Let’s be honest: visiting Belgium isn’t high on most people’s bucketlist. Yet we believe once you know Belgium, you will fall in love with it just like we did. And while you stand at the airport gate, tears rolling down your cheeks after a crazy semester in Belgium, you’ll wonder how you ever underestimated this adorable complex little country!
Facts and figures
- 3 national languages: French, Dutch and German
- 11 million inhabitants
- 3rd most globalised country according to the KOF index hosting the headquarters of the main EU institutions as well as numerous international organisations
- By train: 1 hour and a half from Paris, 2 hours from London, 2 hours from Amsterdam
- The Brussel’s International Airport is the World’s biggest chocolate selling point
- Belgium makes over 800 different beers
- Belgians pay some of the highest tax rates in the world, around 40% of their gross earnings.
As a student at CEMS Louvain-la-neuve, this is where you will spend the most of your time. Louvain-la-neuve is situated in the french-speaking part of Belgium, 30 km southeast of Brussels. The city was built following the linguistic quarrels that took place in Belgium during the 1960s , dividing the Catholic University of Leuven into the Dutch speaking Katholieke Universiteit Leuven and the Université Catholique de Louvain. So when catching the train for the first time, make sure you take the train to Louvain La Neuve!
LLN is a very young city: there are over 23.000 students. It’s entirely pedestrian which makes it really convenient for students to walk to and from classes, restaurants, libraries, sports centre, cinema and commercial centre. There are many events organized in LLN, including the famous annual “24 heures vélo” in October. Basically, it’s a 24-hour bicycle relay race through the city, supported by a enormous crowd (about 50.000 students attend from all over the country) during various music concerts and parties.