Belgium, formally known as the Kingdom of Belgium, is a small country located on the western coast of Europe. Its capital is Brussels, which also serves as the country’s largest city. By population, Belgium is the 79th largest country in the world, as well as being extremely densely populated.
Located on the western coast of Europe, Belgium shares a short coastline with the North Sea. Its geographical neighbors include France to the south, Germany and Luxembourg to the east and northeast, and finally the Netherlands to the north.
Though Belgium is a small country, coming in at about 11,500 square miles, it still has a relatively diverse geography. On the coast, large swaths of beaches can be found. As you move inland, the soft coastal beaches turn into large, flat land. Finally, as the eastern border is met, the countryside begins to become more hilly. This is where the highest point in the country can be found; the Botrange, measured at just shy of 2700 feet. As the geography increases in the amount and height of hills that are present, the flat plains slowly begin to give way into thickly wooded areas.
The climate of Belgium is mild, both in winter and summer months. Summer months are cool and frequently cloudy, and winters are cool to cold, with light rain common. As you move further inland into the more hilly region of the country, winters will begin to become colder. Because of the jet streams, Belgium, for the most part, avoids major weather events.
The population of Belgium is extremely dense, with 996 people per square mile. Its residents overwhelmingly live in urban environments as well, and also have citizenship, both categories boasting higher than 90% of the citizens. The heritage mix of the population, however, is extremely rich and diverse. Major ethnic groups in Belgium include Dutch, French, Italian, Moroccan, Portuguese, and Spanish. The country still holds an eclectic mix of other ethnic groups at much smaller percentage points.
The religious diversity in Belgium, however, is far less diverse. About 60% of citizens identify as Christian, with the next largest group at 32% claiming Atheism as their belief set. Other minority religions include a small percentage claiming Islam, as well as several other small religious groups, including followers of Judaism.
The country of Belgium also has three official languages: Dutch, French, and German.