Belgium is a small federal republic in Western Europe. Belgium is bordered by Luxembourg, Germany, the Netherlands, and France. Belgium is home to over 11 million Belgians and occupies an area of about 11,787 sq miles. The country has two linguistic groups: the French-speaking community composed of the Walloons who make up 40% of the Belgians while the Dutch-speaking Flemish people are 59% of the population. The remaining 1% is the German-speaking Belgians. The biggest and largest city in the country is Brussels. Other main metropolitan includes Liege, Charleroi, Ghent, and Antwerp.
Belgium is split into three self-governing areas: the German-speaking Belgians are in the eastern side of the country, the French-speaking Walloons are in the southern regions while the Dutch-speaking people are in the northern parts of Belgium. Even though Brussels is a bilingual place within the northern area, the dominant dialect in the city is French. Belgium is among the founding states of the EU (European Union), and the NATO, WTO (World Trade Organization). The official seats of the European Parliament, European Commission, and the European Council are all in Brussels.
Countries Bordering Belgium
France is an independent country whose territory includes Mainland France as well as numerous overseas territories and regions. Mainland France stretches from the Atlantic Ocean to the Rhine and from the North Sea and the English Channel to the Mediterranean Sea. The entire French Republic has an area of about 248,573 sq miles with over 67million residents. France’s capital, commercial and cultural center is Paris. Other vital cities include Strasbourg, Toulouse, Nice, Lille, Lyon, and Marseille.
The French-Belgian border is about 385 miles long. River Leie defines a portion of the boundary. The border stretches from the west to the east with the easternmost point being at the Luxembourg-France-Belgium tripoint near Mont St Martin. The westernmost point is near Bray-Dunes and De Panne at the North Sea. The straight stretch between on the border is about 180 miles long. France and Belgium joined the Schengen Area in 1995, and since then there have been no permanent boundary controls on their border.
Some of the French Departments on the boundary include Meuse-et-Moselle, Ardennes, Meuse, Aisne, and Nord. The Belgium provinces on the border include Luxembourg, Namur, Hainaut and the West Flanders. Some of the boundary crossing points can be found in Goegnies-Chaussee, Aubange, Grand-Reng, Wervicq-Sud, Vieux-Reng, and Torgny.
The Netherlands, also known as Holland together with Saba, Sint Eustatius and Bonaire form a constituent nation of the Netherlands Kingdom. The Netherlands shares a maritime boundary with Germany, the United Kingdom, and the United States. The European part of the Holland has twelve provinces and is bounded to the northwest by the North Sea, to the south by Belgium and Germany to the eastern side. Holland occupies an area of about 16,040 sq miles with a population of over 17,215,830 residents. Some of the major cities in Holland include Eindhoven, Utrecht, The Hague, Rotterdam, and Amsterdam.
The Holland-Belgium boundary is about 280 miles long. The borders of the two countries are within the Schengen Area; therefore they do not have permanent boundary controls. Some of the Belgian provinces that share the Holland-Belgium boundary include Limburg, Antwerp, East Flanders and West Flander provinces (Flemish provinces) in Belgium. A small part of Liege is also on the border. The Holland provinces on the border include Limburg, North Brabant, and Zeeland. River Meuse forms a more significant part of the boundary. The easternmost part of the boundary is at Vaalserberg.
Germany is a federal nation with sixteen constituent states which cover an area of about 137,988 sq miles. Germany has a population of around 83 million, which makes it the most populated country in Europe. The country’s key centers are in Essen and Dortmund, with their biggest conurbation in Ruhr. Berlin is the central metropolis and capital of Germany. Other important cities include Nuremberg, Dresden, Leipzig, Stuttgart, Cologne, Hamburg and Munich among others. Germany was formed in 1871 when a majority of the German states plus Austria and Switzerland unified to create the German Empire. The country split after the end of the Second World War, into the Eastern Germany and Western Germany which merged together on October 3, 1990.
The Germany-Belgium border is about 83 miles long, and it separates the province of Liege (Belgium) and Rhineland-Palatinate and North Rhine-Westphalia in Germany. It begins at the Belgium, Germany and Holland tripoint at Vaalserberg and stretches to the Belgium-Luxembourg-Germany tripoint. The current Belgium-Germany border was established in 1956 after Belgium returned some of the German territories which it was entrusted to administer after the end of World War 2. The region includes Losheimergraben, Losheim am See and Aachen-Bildchen. Some of the crossing points on the Germany-Belgium border are in Vaalserberg, Hauset, Eynatten, and Aachen.
Luxembourg is the small European state which occupies an area of about 998 sq miles with approximately 602,005 residents. Even though it is one of the least populous countries in Europe, Luxembourg has the highest growth rate in Europe of about 2.05%. The landlocked state is bounded to the south by France, Germany to the eastern side and Belgium to the north and west. Strasbourg, Brussels and Luxembourg City are EU’s capital cities. Luxembourg City (its capital) hosts the European Union’s Court of Justice which was formed in 1952. The country’s culture and language is profoundly influenced by its neighbors, which means that Luxembourg’s culture is a perfect blend of the German and French cultures. The country has three official languages including Luxembourgish (the national language), German and French.
The Luxembourg-Belgium boundary is 81 miles long, and the Treaty of London created it in 1839. The treaty established Luxembourg’s German-speaking region while guaranteeing the independence of Belgium. The River Sauer (the left branch of river Moselle) forms a part of the Luxembourg-Belgium border for about 8 miles on the northern sides of Martelange. One of the border crossings is in Leithum, Luxembourg. Leithum is the populous part of Diekirch, and it was established in 1839. The border crossing connects Luxembourg with Belgium by roads to Stubach and Oberhausen in Belgium. Another crossing point is found in Martelange.