Belgium Holidays

Belgium is a wonderful country situated on Europe’s mainland though it is often overshadowed by other more powerful neighboring countries including the Netherlands, Germany and France. The name of the country originates from the Celtic tribe name of Belgae, and this wonderful country forms a crossroads for much of Europe with particular relevance to mainland Europe and the United Kingdom. This country has seen it become heavily influenced by such powers as England, France and the Netherlands right through its history and there are still remnants of Romans, Celtics, Germans, French and Spanish influences to be found in modern day Belgium.

Belgium has been ruled by various European empires and it has thus had many famous commercial trading posts spring up in the form of Bruges, Antwerp and of course, its capital city Brussels. Belgium is not only famous for diamond trading, but it also has produced some very spectacular artists of whom Eyck and Rubens are perhaps the best known.

Brussels, Belgium

Modern day Belgium can be broken down into three separate states that each has significant amount of autonomy and there are Flemish, Walloon and also a tiny Germanic areas. The Flemish language spoken can be attributed to the Dutch influence, while the Walloon is more closely related to the French influences that have affected the country for many centuries. Each of these states is clearly divided and they all enjoy a great degree of autonomy and one may even consider them as being tiny countries in themselves.

Belgium is a Kingdom whose official name is the Kingdom of Belgium and it is a Western European country having about thirteen thousand square miles of territory with Brussels being its capital and which has just fewer than a million inhabitants with Antwerp, its second largest city with roughly half a million inhabitants.

The inhabitants of Belgium are called Belgians and there are about ten million people that all grow at a miserly level each year, which is believed to be about half a percent each year. As you enter the different states in Belgium, the main language changes with French being spoken in the Wallonia, Dutch in the Flanders and Germans are being most spoken in the Brussels area. The majority of Belgians are Roman Catholics though there are also Protestants, Jews, Muslims and also Anglican communities. The country is almost totally literate with as many as ninety-five percent literacy rate.

The country is really a mishmash of many influences and it enjoys a good reputation as being a progressive and friendly country with Brussels forming a major financial capital of Europe. The terrain in the country is generally flat though it can become hilly as well as forested as one enters the southeast of the country near Ardennes, and the climate in Belgium is generally cool and temperate with a lot of rains and summer temperatures hover in the seventies while in the winter it stays around the forty-five degree Fahrenheit. All in all, Belgium has a well developed market economy and boasts of having among the highest per capita GDP in the world.

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