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Belgium - Planning your trip

Belgium is of the smallest countries in Europe bordered by France, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, and Germany. Being in strategic location, the country is often called the Essence of Europe. Brussels is one of the world’s great cosmopolitan capitals, home to both the European Union and NATO. In the north, you be enchanted by medieval art cities of Antwerp, Bruges and Ghent in the region known as Flanders. Going to the south, the hills of the Ardennes, with countless castles, and the cities of Liege, Namur, and Tournai in the region of Wallonia will let you fascinated. In addition, Brussels, the capital, is considered a center of the world economy and diplomacy. Whether you’re looking for a weekend break or a longer trip, this dynamic country has a lot to offer.

Beer in Belgium

What you need to know before you go

Transport - As you may guess, when any visitor is planning a trip to Belgium, the capital Brussels and the canals of Bruges are the major tourist magnets. Getting to both these cities is easy, affordable, and quick.

Trains are operated by SNCB/NMBS and tickets can be purchased over the counter at stations and at vending machines. Note that prices are fixed, so it doesn’t matter when you buy your ticket, however, tickets are half price on weekends. For those who prefer to drive, all major agencies (Sixt, Hertz, Europcar, etc) have offices all over Belgium. If you want to save, bus is a great alternative, we found the best prices using Flix Bus.

Taxis in Brussels are among the most expensive in Europe. For cheap, low-carbon transport, consider renting a bike through one of the many local bike-sharing platforms, such as Villo! and Billy Bike.

Accommodation - In Belgium hotel prices fluctuate wildly with demand and not necessarily with the season. Whether you’re looking for a luxury hotel or a more affordable option, there is no shortage of accommodation options in the country. Whether you’re traveling on a tight budget, a luxurious villa near the beach, a great hotel or vacation homes, Belgium offer something for everyone.

Best time to visit Belgium - If you are a beer fan, Belgium can be enjoyed in any season. If you don't like beer, Belgium's best bits can be enjoyed in any season too, but don't forget to bring an umbrella. Spring and fall are the perfect times for nature lovers, while July–August, which is the high season is the best time for music festivals and beach parties. the shoulder season is considered April–June & September–October, when crowds and prices plummet. The low season is November–March, which is the time for Christmas lights. The food is great the year long, so foodies are welcome at any season.

Tradicional food in Belgium - Belgium is famous for waffles, fries, chocolates, mussels and beer. Belgium has more than 1000 brands of beer, do we need to say anything else? The world-renowned beer, made Belgium the only country whose beer culture is inscribed on UNESCO’s Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. If you are a beer lover, this country is a paradise on Earth!

Places you must visit when in Belgium

There’s so much to see in Belgium and it’s easy to travel from one place to the next by car, train and even by bus. Most cities are within a few hours of one another, making it easy to cover a lot of the country in a short period of time. To take the most of your trip consider split your time between your favorite destinations. The 4 most popular places to visit in Belgium are:

  • Bruges and the stunning canals are the best for romantic couples
  • Fashionists will fall in love by the boutiques from Antwerp
  • Adventurous cannot miss the Hoge Kempen National Park – the country’s only national park
  • If history is more your vibe, you cannot miss the UNESCO World Heritage-listed in Brussels
TIps for first visit

1. Plan in advance – Did you know Brussels has more than one hundred museums and is considered one of the greenest cities in Europe? The Belgium capital itself has more cultural events per capita than New York and half of the city is made up of parks. With so many options to see and so, make sure you plan your itinerary in advance.

2. Drinking beer in Belgium is like a real lifestyle! – Locals used to say they stop counting how many great and local breweries you are able to find in Belgium. No matter how many beer places you plan to go during your trip, Delirium Café is a must! This place has the largest selection of beers in the world. Cheers!

3. Visit the Smurfs – Perhaps big part of your childhood came from Belgium! The French-Belgians are prolific comic creators. If you read or watched animated or film adaptations of the Smurfs, Tintin among several other be sure to visit them when in Belgium. You can visit the Official Smurf Store and or join a group on a 9 km tour to discover magnificent murals that honor Belgium’s comics arts.

4. Check out the Manneken Pis, the most famous statue in the country.  Located in Brussels,  The statue of “Manneken Pis” is not only a unique architectural monument but also a peculiar symbol of Belgium.

5. Don’t Leave your shopping for Sunday. As most Belgians are Roman Catholic, many shops are closed on Sundays, including major grocery stores and banks. If you need to buy anything, don’t plan on doing it on a Sunday.

Brugues Canals

Essential Information

Passport and Visa – Belgium is a party to the Schengen Agreement. This means that most people may enter in the country for up to 90 days for tourist or business purposes without a visa.

Currency – Euro. Belgium is a founding member of the European Union and one of the first countries to adopt the euro on 1 January 1999.

Language – Belgium has three official languages: Dutch (Flemish), French, and German. Dutch is the most spoken primary language of Belgium and the official language of the Flemish Community, a historical region in northern Belgium. French is an official language of the Brussels-Capital Region. Even though English isn’t an official language of Belgium, it is still spoken by 55% of its population.

Tax Free – If you have permanent residence in a non-EU country, you are eligible for tax free shopping. More info here.

Tipping – Tipping in Belgium isn’t a standard practice as most service staff are paid a fair living wage. Furthermore, a 10–15% tip is automatically included in the bill at most restaurants.

Population – The current population of Belgium is 11.6M.

Economy – The country has a free-enterprise economy, with the majority of the gross domestic product (GDP) generated by the service sector.


Brussels is considered the capital of Europe. Walking around the city you can observe a mix of 183 nationalities living together and speaking around 104 languages. In addition of being the headquarters of the European Union, the capital is also the most cosmopolitan city on the European continent.

Useful Links

Visit Brussels

Wallonia Belgium Tourism

Visit Flanders

Belgium Oficial Information Center

Flix Bus – to travel to near cities and countries around Belgium

Trains run frequently and are operated by SNCB/NMBS

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