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Blossoming season, Alken, Flemish Brabant, Belgium
Blossoming season, Alken, Flemish Brabant, Belgium.
Image: Niele Geypens
Flag of Belgium
Flag of Belgium
Location map of Belgium. Where in Europe is Belgium?
Location map of Belgium
Destination Belgium, the low-lying country in Western Europe bordering the North Sea between France and the Netherlands, it borders Luxembourg and Germany in east and it shares maritime borders with the United Kingdom.

The country occupies an area of 30,528 km², it is about three-fourths the size of neighboring Netherlands, or about the size of the U.S. state of Maryland.

Belgium is a federal state divided into three regions: Dutch-speaking Flanders in the north, francophone Wallonia in the south and Brussels, the bilingual capital, where French and Dutch share official status. There is also a small German-speaking minority in the eastern part of the country.

The country has a population of 11,2 million people (in 2016), capital and largest city is Brussels.

Belgium | Belgique | België | Belgien

Country Profile

Belgium became independent from the Netherlands after a nationalist revolt in 1830. Occupied and devastated during both world wars, Belgium formed the Benelux Customs Union with the Netherlands and Luxembourg in 1948 and became a founding member of the EEC.

Tensions between the Dutch-speaking Flemings of the north and the French-speaking Walloons of the south have led in recent years to constitutional amendments granting these regions formal recognition and autonomy.

Read more about Belgium's History.


Official Name:
Royaume de Belgique - Koninkrijk Belgie
local short form: Belgique - België
int'l long form: Kingdom of Belgium
int'l short form: Belgium

ISO Country Code: be, bel
Time Zone: CET -- Central European Time
Actual Time: Sun-Apr-21  12:05
Local Time = UTC +1h
Daylight Saving Time (DST) March - October (UTC +2)

Country Calling Code: +32

Capital: Bruxelles (Brussels - pop. 954 460)

Other Cities:
Antwerp (pop. 445,570)
Brugge (pop. 116,559)
Charleroi (pop. 202,233)
Gent (pop. 224,685)
Liège (pop. 184,550)
Namur (pop. 105,248)
Verviers, Waterloo

Federal parliamentary democracy under a constitutional monarch
Independence: 1830 (from the Netherlands)

Location: Western Europe
Area: 30,528 km² (11,786 sq. mi.)
Highest elevation: Signal de Botrange (694 m)

Climate: Temperate; mild winters, cool summers; rainy, humid, cloudy

Nationality: noun: Belgian(s)
adjective: Belgian
Population: 11.2 million (2016)
GNI per capita PPP: $ 31 549 (year)
Religions: Predominantly Roman Catholic (although less than 20% practicing); Protestant, Jewish, Islamic, Anglican, Greek and Russian Orthodox recognized.
Languages: Dutch, French, German
Linguistic regions: Dutch-speaking 58%; French-speaking 32%; legally bilingual (Brussels) 9.3%; German-speaking 0.7%
Literacy: 98%.

Natural resources: Coal, natural gas, construction materials, silica sand, carbonates.

Agriculture products: Sugar beets, fresh vegetables, fruits, grain, tobacco; beef, veal, pork, milk.

Industries: Engineering and metal products, motor vehicle assembly, processed food and beverages, chemicals, basic metals, textiles, glass, petroleum.

Exports - commodities: machinery and equipment, chemicals, finished diamonds, metals and metal products, foodstuffs

Exports partners: Germany 16.9%, France 15.5%, Netherlands 11.4%, UK 8.8%, USA 6%, Italy 5% (2015)

Imports - commodities: raw materials, machinery and equipment, chemicals, raw diamonds, pharmaceuticals, foodstuffs, transportation equipment, oil products

Imports partners: Netherlands 16.7%, Germany 12.7%, France 9.6%, USA 8.7%, UK 5.1%, Ireland 4.7%, China 4.3% (2015)

Currency: Euro (EUR)

Political system
Belgium is a federally organized constitutional hereditary monarchy with a bicameral parliament. Head of state is the King. He appoints ministers, including a Prime Minister with parliament approval. Head of government is the Prime Minister.

The federal legislative power is exercised by the King and the Chamber of Representatives. The two Houses of Parliament are the Chamber of Representatives with 150 and the Senate with 60 members. In Belgium voting is compulsory.

Note: External links will open in a new browser window.

Official Sites of Belgium

royal The Belgian Monarchy
Official website of the Belgian King and the members of the Royal Family.

Prime Minister of Belgium
Belgian Prime Minister’s website.

Het federale Parlement van België - Le parlement fédéral de la Belgique
The Federal Parliament of Belgium. The bicameral federal parliament is composed of the Senate (or upper house) and the Chamber of Representatives.

Belgian Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Federal Public Service Foreign Affairs, Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation Belgium.

Official portal of Belgium.

Diplomatic Missions
Permanent Mission of Belgium to the United Nations
The Belgian UN Mission.
Embassy of Belgium
Washington D.C.
Belgian Embassies Abroad
Addresses of Belgian Embassies Abroad.
Foreign Embassies in Belgium
Addresses of Foreign Embassies in Belgium.
Visa for Belgium
Visa information for Belgium.

Statistics Belgium
Directorate-general Statistics and Economic information, the National Institute of Statistics.

Koninklijk Meteorologisch Instituut
The Royal Meteorological Institute of Belgium.


 Map of Belgium
Political Map of Belgium.
Google Earth Google Earth Belgium (Belgie, Belgique)
Searchable map and satellite view of Belgium.
Google Earth Google Earth Brussels
Searchable map and satellite view of Belgium's capital.

Map of Europe
Political Map of Europe.

Grand Place Brussels, Brussels Town Hall and Maison du Roi
A floral carpet on the Grand Place in Brussels, the building on the left is Brussels Town Hall, the opposite building is known as the Breadhouse or Maison du Roi.
Image: Wouter Hagens


News in Dutch language:
De Standaard
Daily news.
De Morgen
Daily news.
Gazet van Antwerpen
Daily newspaper.
Het Laatste Nieuws
Belgium daily.
Het Nieuwsblad
Belgium daily.

News in French:
La Libre Belgique
Belgium and international news.
Le Soir
National and international news.

Belgium News in German:


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The Grand Place in Brussels
Grand' Place Brussels

Arts & Culture

Official Atomium's website of Belgium's most famous landmark.

great site Principia Cybernetica
Principia Cybernetica tries to tackle age-old philosophical questions with the help of the most recent cybernetic theories and technologies.

Artsite Belgium
Gallery List.
Belgian Art Research Institute
We plan to publish definitive catalogues raisonnés for several major Belgian artists.

Famous Belgians
Hergé Foundation
Tintins Homepage.
Jacques Brel
Belgiums uber-most famous poet and singer. (site is not working)
Magritte Museum displays works of the surrealist artist and great Belgian painter René Magritte.
Paul Delvaux
Foundation Paul Delvaux and museum dedicated to the Belgian painter, associated with Surrealism.
Rubenshuis Antwerpen
Peter Paul Rubens home.

Antwerp Royal Academy of Fine Arts Belgium - Fashion Department
Think of unconventional fashion and you think of Antwerp.

De Munt/La Monnaie
La Monnaie Opera House.

Musée de Louvain-la-Neuve
University museum open to the public in 1979, part of the Department of Archeology and the History of Art, Louvain-la-Neuve.
Musées royaux des Beaux-Arts- Koninklijke Musea voor Schone Kunsten
Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium, Brussels.
Design Museum Gent
Museum of Decorative Arts and Design, Ghent. The accent in the collections and exhibitions lies on 20th century and actual design.
Palais des Beaux-Arts de Charleroi
Fine Arts at Charleroi.
Royal Museums of Art and History
One of the biggest museum institutions in Belgium.
Royal Museum for Central Africa
Part of the Belgian history.

Business & Economy

Belgium's modern, open, and private-enterprise-based economy has capitalized on its central geographic location, highly developed transport network, and diversified industrial and commercial base.

Industry is concentrated mainly in the more heavily-populated region of Flanders in the north. With few natural resources, Belgium imports substantial quantities of raw materials and exports a large volume of manufactures, making its economy vulnerable to volatility in world markets.

Belgian banks were severely affected by the international financial crisis in 2008 with three major banks receiving capital injections from the government, and the nationalization of the Belgian retail arm of a Franco-Belgian bank.

Nationale Bank van België - Banque Nationale de Belgique
The Central Bank of Belgium.

Belgian Foreign Trade Agency
Belgian Trade Promotion Organization.

Brussels Stock Exchange (BSE)
Brussels Stock Exchange merged with Paris Bourse, Lisbon Stock Exchange and the stock exchanges of Amsterdam, to form Euronext

Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Belgium
The official site of the Belgian Chambers of Commerce and Industry.
Information about investing in Belgium, part of Belgium's Information campaign about investing in Belgium.

Golden Pages online
Belgian's yellow pages.

__Belgian Products
The Atomium - Brusseles
Since its creation in 1958, the Atomium has become a symbol of the 20th Century.

Beer Paradise
Belgian Breweries.

Belgian Lace
Belgian Lace Manufactory.

Chocolate since 1857.
Belgian Chocolate.
Godiva Chocolate
Godiva Chocolatier was founded in 1926 in Brussels.

Diamond High Council - HRD
More than half of the world's consumption of rough as well as polished and industrial diamonds is traded in Antwerp.


Brussels Airlines
Belgian airline, covering 43 European & 13 African destinations, corporate profile, timetables, etc.
VLM Airlines
The former regional business airline is now CityJet, CityJet bought Belgian airline VLM in 2007.

Brussels (Zaventem) International Airport
Belgium's largest airport (IATA: BRU).
Brussels South Charleroi Airport
Second busiest airport Belgium's (IATA: CRL).

High-speed passenger train linking London, Paris and Brussels.
The Belgian Railways.

Atomium in Brussels
The Atomium, the unique iconic landmark in Brussels consists of nine interconnected spheres, it is a model of an elementar arrangement of atoms of an iron crystal, enlarged 165 billion times.
Image: © - SABAM - DJ Sharko

Destination Belgium - Travel and Tour Guides

Discover Belgium: Wallonia, Flanders, Brussels, Antwerp, Charleroi, Ghent, Namur, Waterloo
Accommodation, hotels, attractions, festivals, events, tourist boards, tours and much more.

Office de Promotion du Tourisme Wallonie
Belgian Tourist Office for Brussels and Wallonia.

Toerisme Vlaanderen
Belgian Tourist Office for Brussels and Flanders.

Belgian National Tourist Office
Official Site of the Belgian Tourist Office in The Americas.

Brugge with canal and belfry
Canal in Brugge, view from Huidenvettersplein with the famous 13th-century belfry in the background.
Image: Elke Wetzig
World Heritage Sites in Belgium
World Heritage Site Historic Centre of Brugge
Brugge (Bruges) is the capital and largest city of the province of West Flanders, the Historic Town of Brugge, a medieval historic city is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

World Heritage Site La Grand-Place, Brussels
The central square of Brussel since the Middle Ages, is surrounded by Gothic buildings, guildhalls, Brussels Town Hall, and the Breadhouse building which today houses the Museum of the City of Brussels official website

World Heritage Site Lifts on the old Canal du Centre
The four hydraulic boat-lifts on the historic Canal du Centre, near the town of La Louvière, Wallonia, are industrial monuments built in the late 19th and early 20th century.

World Heritage Site Notre-Dame Cathedral in Tournai
The Cathedral of Notre-Dame in Tournai was built in the first half of the 12th century. The building combines the work of three design periods. It is especially distinguished by a Romanesque nave of extraordinary dimensions and a wealth of sculpture on its capitals.

World Heritage Site Plantin-Moretus House-Workshops-Museum Complex
The Plantin-Moretus Museum is a museum in Antwerp, it was originally a printing plant and publishing house dating from the Renaissance and Baroque periods. The complex is is associated with the history of the invention and spread of printing.

More World Heritage Sites in Belgium official website

historic Canal du Centre, Wallonia
The historic Canal du Centre, Wallonia.
Image: Davidh820
City Guides

Welcome to the official website of the Tourism and convention bureau of Brussels.
Welcome to Brussels
A guide to Brussels.

Other Belgian Cities:
City of Antwerp
Digital Metropolis Antwerp.
Stad Brugge
The City of Bruges.
Ville de Charleroi
The City of Charleroi.
The City of Ghent.
Ville de Liège
The City of Liege.
The City of Namur, the capital of Wallonia.
The Wallonian Capital of Water.
Commune de Waterloo
The City of Waterloo.

Le Métropole
Brussels' legendary hotel.

Travel and Tour Consumer Information



Katholieke Universiteit Leuven
One of the best European universities.
University of Ghent
UGent, is one of the major universities in the Dutch-speaking region, founded in 1817 as a Latin-speaking State University.
Université Libre de Bruxelles
Founded in 1834.
University of Liège
University of Liège was founded in 1817
Vrije Universiteit Brussel
Flemish university with a specific ideological basis, namely Free Inquiry, founded in 1970.

Royal Library Belgium
Koninklijke Bibliotheek België; Bibliothèque royale Belgique (Dutch, French)

Science & Research
Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences
Museum and research institution.
Royal Meteorological Institute of Belgium
Official Belgian waether website.
Royal Observatory of Belgium
Home of the Belgian astronomy.
Scientific and Technical Information Service (STIS)
Information brokerage and document delivery.
Belgian Portal for Research and Innovation in the fields of Science and Technology.

Environment & Nature

Environmental organizations Belgium

Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD)
Belgium portal site to promote technical and scientific cooperation in the field of biodiversity.

Greenpeace Belgium
The Belgian Greenpeace organization (in French nad Dutch).
Les Amis de la Terre-Belgique
Friends of the Earth, Belgium.
VMM - Vlaamse Milieumaatschappij
The Flemish Environment Agency, a public Flemish institution.
World Wildlife Fund (WWF) - Belgium
The Belgian WWF site (in French nad Dutch).


Belgium History and politics
About the different periods of Belgium's history.

Belgium - Short History
Outline of Belgian history.

Genealogy: Belgium - The BELGIUM-ROOTS Project


Sources and additional Information on Belgium

Amnesty International: Belgium

BBC Country profile: Belgium

EU Belgium profile

FAO Country Profiles - Belgium

GlobalEDGE: Belgium

The Heritage Foundation: Belgium

Human Rights Watch: Belgium

OEC: Belgium

Reporters Without Borders: Belgium Belgium

UNDP - Human Development Indicators: Belgium

Wikipedia: Belgium

Worldbank Data: Belgium

The World Factbook -- Belgium
 Support UNICEF

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Major Cities in Western Europe
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