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Brief Data
  • Name:
  • Area:
  • Capital:
  • Currency:
  • Population:
  • National Day:
  • Koninkrijk België
  • 30,528 km2
  • Brussels
  • Euro
  • 10,403,951
  • 21 July

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Other Facts:
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  • Lowest Pt.:
  • Highest Pt.:
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  • and
  • 50 50 N, 4 00 E
  • North Sea 0 m
  • Botrange 694 m
  • 41.4 years
  • Fleming 58%
  • Walloon 31%

Belgium's two largest regions are the Dutch-speaking region of Flanders in the north, with 58% of the population, and the French-speaking southern region of Wallonia, inhabited by 32%. The Brussels-Capital Region, although officially bilingual, is a mostly French-speaking enclave within the Flemish Region and near the Walloon Region, and has 10% of the population. A small German-speaking Community exists in eastern Wallonia. Belgium's linguistic diversity and related political and cultural conflicts are reflected in the political history and a complex system of government.


Brussels has grown from a 10th-century fortress town founded by Charlemagne's grandson into a metropolis of more than one million inhabitants. After the end of World War II, Brussels has been an important centre of international politics. It is often considered the de facto capital of the European Union, as it hosts the main EU institutions. Brussels is the EU's third-richest city in terms of per capita income.


Bruges has most of its medieval architecture intact. The historic centre of Bruges is a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2000.

Bruges is also famous for its 13th-century Belfry, housing a municipal Carillon comprising 47 bells. The city still employs a full-time bell ringer, Aimé Lombaért, who puts on regular free concerts.


The city is well-known for its very crowded folk festivals. The 15th of August festival is maybe the best known. The population gathers in a quarter named Outre-Meuse with plenty of tiny pedestrian streets and old yards.

Many people come to see the procession but also to drink alcohol and beer, eat cabbage, sausages or pancakes or simply enjoy the atmosphere until early.


Antwerp is a rising fashion city, and has produced designers such as the Antwerp Six. The city has a cult status in the fashion world, due to the Royal Academy of Fine Arts, one of the most important fashion academies in Europe.

We transited Antwerp by TGV on our way to Brussels, and stopped for a while in the train station. Haven't gotten to see much of it, but plan to return soon here.


Much of the city's medieval architecture remains intact and is remarkably well preserved and restored. Its center is the largest carfree area in Belgium.

Ghent established a nice blend between comfort of living and history – it is not a city-museum. The city Ghent houses also three béguinages and numerous churches. The beguinages, as well as the belfry and adjacent cloth hall, were recognized by UNESCO as World Heritage Sites in 1998 and 1999.

We transited Ghent by train on our way to Bruges, stopping in the Gent-Sint-Pieters Station. Even from there, it looked like a gorgeous city, with all the belfry spires piercing the skies.

Would definitely return to this city and visit it properly.