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Best Places to Live in Belgium | 10 Captivating Cities

Belgium, located in northwestern Europe, is famous for its waffles, various types of chocolates, music festivals, and beer. This stunning country has many of the best cities to live in Europe to discover and explore.

As Belgium is the official headquarters of the European Union, it’s not hard to see why there is a growing trend of individuals looking to move to this idyllic country.

Unsure how to fish for the perfect catch in a sea full of an endless array of cities in Belgium?.

It does not need to break your brain, as our guide to the best places to live in Belgium will make your choice a no-brainer.

Tip: Check out our guide to applying for a Schengen Visa requirements if you’re planning to visit Belgium anytime soon.

Best Places to Live in Belgium for:

  1. Expats – Brussels
  2. English Speakers – Brussels
  3. Digital Nomads – Bruges
  4. Solo Travelers – Rixensart
  5. Groups – Liege
  6. Couples – Tervuren

Top 10 Places to Live in Belgium

1. Brussels

Best Place to Live for Expats & English Speakers

brussels-belgium

Cost of Living: $$

Brussels is nestled in between several European countries and the European Union (EU), which makes it the perfect epicenter for travelers at heart. It is a modern, multicultural city that combines everything Belgium is famous for, making it an expat’s dream location.

Tip: The ‘European District,’ which hosts the European Parliament, is home to many expat communes.

Who Would Like to Live There: Expats, English Speakers & Digital Nomads

Pros:

  • Great healthcare services.
  • Extremely family-friendly.
  • Great food and restaurants to try.

Cons:

  • Constant traffic within popular areas.
  • Accommodation can be expensive.
  • High tax rates.

2. Bruges

Best Place to Live for Digital Nomads

bruges-belgium

Cost of Living: $$$

The tech-centered city of Bruges has captured the eyes of digital nomads for years. Bruges is sprinkled with beautiful medieval architecture, mesmerizing canals, and cobbled alleyways that lead into stunning town squares.

Tip: As Bruges has become a meeting point for people worldwide, having the best banking service available for travelers is essential in this city. 

Who Would Like to Live There: Digital Nomads & Expats

Pros:

  • Effective public transportation.
  • Beautiful scenery and great tertiary institutions
  • Loads of exciting festivals throughout the year.

Cons:

  • Expensive accommodation.
  • High tax rates.
  • It can get overcrowded during peak season.

3. Antwerp

Best Place to Live for Modern Urbanites

antwerp-street-belgium

Cost of Living: $$

Known as the world’s diamond capital, Antwerp has become a city synonymous with urban luxury. Each year, the city attracts thousands of visitors due to Antwerp’s culture, shopping, fashion scene, and architectural gems. Antwerp is quickly becoming a prime example of any urban traveler’s paradise.

Tip: When living in Antwerp, it’s good to learn some Flemish as a large part of the locals only speak this language.

Who Would Like to Live There: Solo Travelers & Digital Nomads

Pros:

  • General lower living costs.
  • Family-friendly establishments.
  • For potential employment, Antwerp is a great business hub.

Cons:

  • Traffic congestion is possible in the city center.
  • There might be some language barriers to navigate.
  • Constant construction zones.

4. Ghent

Best Place to Live for Lovers of Aesthetics

ghent-belgium

Cost of Living: $

The city of Ghent is located at the meeting point of two rivers, the Scheldt and Lys, and is a bustling home to many expats. Both expats and solo travelers will find its pedestrian-friendly city plan and skyline a beautiful mix of the old and new.

Tip: Invest in a bicycle to easily navigate the city and get to know Ghent like a true local.

Who Would Like to Live There: Expats & Couples

Pros:

  • The locals are very welcoming and friendly.
  • Ample supply of educational institutions for traveling students.
  • Beautiful architecture.

Cons:

  • The weather in Ghent can be unpredictable.
  • Accommodation can be expensive.

5. Liege

Best Place to Live for Groups

liege-belgium

Cost of Living: $

As one of Belgium’s largest cities, Liege is known one of the country’s economic hubs. The city is home to many tourist attractions, such as the stunning church of Saint Paul. Larger groups of travelers will find its nightlife to truly living up to its nickname, ‘the glowing city.’

Tip: Splitting accommodation costs between groups is an easy way to live and save money.

Who Would Like to Live There: Groups & Urbanites

Pros:

  • Top-quality education institutions.
  • Exciting nightlife.
  • The locals are very welcoming to foreigners.

Cons:

  • It can be overcrowded.
  • Gaining employment can get tricky as there is an influx of expats looking to relocate to Liege annually.
  • Expensive accommodation if you’re living alone.

6. Leuven

Best Place to Live for Social Butterflies

leuven-belgium

Cost of Living: $$

As the crown jewel of the beer brewing industry in Belgium, Leuven is known for frothy pints and the art of brewing. Home to the headquarters of the biggest brewery globally, the city thrives on the feel of social celebrations.

Tip: If you’re looking to get a top-quality tertiary education, Leuven is the best place for it.

Who Would Like to Live There: Expats & Social Urbanites

Pros:

  • The city has numerous places for social gatherings and celebrations to meet new people.
  • Great local pubs with finely-crafted beer and alcoholic beverages.
  • Unique urban housing innovations

Cons:

  • Eating out can be expensive.
  • Local pubs can get a bit overcrowded during peak season.
  • High tax rates.

7. Rixensart

Best Place to Live for Solo Travelers

belgium-countryside

Cost of Living: $

The relatively small municipality of Rixensart is the personification of a perfect Sunday afternoon. With its laidback atmosphere, local attractions, and numerous parks and hidden chill spots, the city is ideal for escaping the big city.

Tip: The city is filled with unique meditation spaces in parks around Rixensart, such as Aventure Parc.

Who Would Like to Live There: Solo Travelers & Digital Nomads

Pros:

  • A relaxed lifestyle with peaceful and quiet surroundings.
  • A wide selection of peaceful parks to explore.
  • Great cuisine and restaurant selections.

Cons:

  • It can be a bit quiet for adventure-seekers.
  • There are not a lot of expats.
  • Potential language barriers for travelers who do not speak German.

8. Tervuren

Best Place to Live for Couples

tervuren-countryside-belgium

Cost of Living: $$$

Tervuren might not be well-known, but this gem has become home to many expat couples looking to settle down in the countryside of Belgium. The towns that form the Tervuren municipality are seemingly sculpted for late-night walks with your loved one and are perfect for raising a family.

Tip: Homeownership in Tervuren is easy for couples as accommodation is affordable when sharing.

Who Would Like to Live There: Couples

Pros:

  • Small and cozy surroundings.
  • Very family-friendly due to the small neighborhoods.
  • Several international schools aimed at a quality education.

Cons:

  • Does not have many attractions or entertainment venues.
  • The language barrier can be problematic.
  • Not ideal for commuters from neighboring cities.

9. Waterloo

Best Place to Live for History-chasers

waterloo-belgium-rainstorm

Cost of Living: $

Known for being the location where Napoleon Bonaparte’s imperial power ended at the Battle of Waterloo, this historic haven is the perfect place for history hunters.  There are landmarks of this monumental event to discover and explore in and around the city. There is no better choice for travelers looking to lose themselves in Europe’s exciting past than this relic-ridden city.

Tip: Waterloo is predominantly Dutch, so brushing up on your Dutch before moving to Waterloo is wise. 

Who Would Like to Live There: Digital Nomads & Expats

Pros:

  • A lot of tourist attractions to explore.
  • Growing expat community.
  • Central location for commuters.

Cons:

  • General living costs can fluctuate frequently.
  • Potentially overcrowded during peak tourist season.
  • Some language barriers to overcome.

10. Mechelen

Best Place to Live for Sport Fanatics

mechelen-belgium

Cost of Living: $$

Mechelen, located between Brussels and Antwerp, is a must for anyone looking to live in a city filled with diverse settings to experience. It’s a massive football hub for footie fanatics from all over Europe. Football fans can enjoy the sports culture while channelling their artistic side with the city’s many museums and landmarks to experience.

Tip: Join a local football club to help you integrate more efficiently into this new city.

Who Would Like to Live There: Groups

Pros:

  • Various social gatherings and settings to experience the local culture
  • A seemingly endless supply of different museums to visit.
  • Great nightlife.

Cons:

  • Traffic issues.
  • Generally expensive cost of living.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Is It Safe in Belgium?

It is very safe. Being the center of European and NATO politics, Belgium is incredibly safe for locals and tourists.

2. What Currency Do They Use in Belgium?

The Euro is the main currency used in Belgium.

3. What Language Do They Speak in Belgium?

The three main languages in Belgium are:

  • Dutch
  • Flemish
  • German

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