Belgium Travel Guide

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Belgium Information

Population: 10.3million

Time Zone: GMT + 1

Driving side: Drivers drive on the right hand side of the road.

Languages: French, Dutch, German

Religion: 75% Roman Catholic

Emergency #: Pan Europe 112
Police 101
Fire & Ambulance 100

Belgium Popular Destinations

Brussels –home to the European Community Headquarters and NATO, Brussels is more than a bureaucrat's city. Hidden at the centre of the old town you will find the magnificent central square, the Grand Place. This has fine baroque guildhalls, pavement cafes, restaurants and an amazing atmosphere. Brussels has lovely architecture, good museums and of the course the famous Manneken Pis sculpture.

Bruges - has a reputation as one of the most perfectly preserved medieval cities in Europe that is totally justified. The city is famous for its lace and its museums, which hold some of Belgium's finest collection of Flemish Art.

Ghent - is the third largest city in Belgium. In the medieval era Ghent was the main centre of the European cloth industry. It has a history of workers fighting for their human rights and celebrates their struggles with a number of festivals. If you admire interesting architecture then you will love the city centre with its mix of Gothic, Medieval and Renaissance buildings.

Moving Around Belgium

Rail - The country's rail network is very fast and efficient.

Buses - There is an extensive bus network which runs on routes not covered by the rail network.

Cars - hiring a car is an easy but not particularly cheap option.

Trams and small metro systems - These transport systems operate in Brussels and Antwerp and are very good and relatively cheap.

Cycling - is popular in the flat north of the country and many roads have designated lanes for bikes. Bikes can be hired at most Railway stations.

Canal boats - Hiring a boat and cruising along the many canals and rivers is a popular pastime.

National festival and holidays

The Ommegang pageant - Brussels, On the first Thursday in July a large procession of nobles kitted out in historic costumes parade through the streets.

Brussels Jazz Marathon - This musical spring happening attracts over 250.000 jazz-fans to Brussels. Over 400 musicians display their talents on podiums in cafes, bars, hotel lounges and the most prestigious public places. The entrance ticket to the Brussels Jazz Marathon offers more than 120 concerts and free entrance to the "Jazz Marathon". Special buses and public transport join the main "hot" locations across the city.

Flower Carpet On Grand 'Place' Every two years in August an enormous flower carpet (300 m2) cover's Brussels' Grand'Place with over 600,000 fresh begonias.

The Holy Blood Procession - Bruges attracts thousands of visitors to one of the most important religious processions in Europe, the Holy Blood Procession. For eight centuries the relic has been honoured by a mile-long procession of 1,500 citizens of Bruges, many wearing medieval garb of the Crusaders.

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