Exploring Belgian Culture

Belgium is one of the smallest European countries that’s produced some of the finest artists and thinkers. For a small country, it has a lot of beautiful and historical cities, fine food, and rich culture. Tolerance and diplomacy are keywords for Belgium. According to international polls, Belgium is one of the most satisfied countries in the world! Home to the European Union and NATO, Belgium has been influenced by the French, Dutch, Austrian, and Spanish, making it a unique combination of cutting edge and traditional cultures.

Study abroad in French Belgium Host a Belgian student in the U.S.


Belgian People and Community

Students in Belgium

Belgians tend to be tolerant, flexible, modest, and open-minded. They value privacy, enjoy a safe and comfortable life, work hard, and are self-disciplined. Belgians tend to be very involved in their communities and government. They can be reserved around new people but once they get to know someone, they are warm and friendly.

Family life is very important in Belgian culture. Family members share almost every meal together. Broadly speaking, contact with neighbors is not as close as it might be imagined, even in the smaller villages. The family’s immediate members and relatives will usually be close to each other. Belgian parents generally support their children financially until the children reach adulthood. Although both parents often work, women are still responsible for most household chores and child-rearing.

“A Belgian is born with a brick in his stomach” is a popular expression that reflects the desire among Belgians to build and own a brick home. In fact, more than 70 percent of Belgians live in a house or apartment they own.

Language and Communication Style

People in Belgium

People in this part of Belgium commonly speak French. Many people also speak Flemish or German and are typically quite proficient in English

The Belgian-French Diet

A fresh batch of fries pomme-frîtes or fries

Belgian cuisine is much more than good chocolate and beer. Belgians eat a rich variety of foods, including pork, game birds, fish, sausages, cheeses, fruits, vegetables, breads, and soups. Belgium is where you can enjoy waffles (wafelen), fries (pomme-frîtes), mussels, and carbonade flamande (beef stew) along with potatoes and bread. Belgians claim to have invented French fries and serve them in paper cones with mayonnaise instead of ketchup. Their chocolate is legendary, with brands like Godiva and Leonidas offering delicious pralines. In Belgian culture, most families consider eating together very important, especially at dinner.

Explore the Programs Available in Belgium French