Thinking about moving to Brussels? Below we highlight some of the pros and cons of living in Brussels.
Brussels, the capital city of Belgium, is a vibrant and cosmopolitan city that is known for its rich history, diverse culture, and high standard of living. It is a city that is as famous for its delicious chocolates and beers as it is for being the administrative capital of the European Union. However, like any city, living in Brussels has its pros and cons. This article will delve into the advantages and disadvantages of living in this fascinating city.
Pros of Living in Brussels
One of the biggest advantages of living in Brussels is its central location in Europe. This makes it an ideal base for exploring other European cities. Paris, London, Amsterdam, and Berlin are all just a short train ride away. This makes weekend getaways to these cities not only possible but also very convenient.
Brussels is also a city that is rich in culture and history. The city is home to numerous museums, art galleries, and historical sites. The Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium, for instance, houses an impressive collection of art from the 15th to the 21st centuries. The Atomium, a landmark building in Brussels, offers panoramic views of the city and is a must-visit for anyone living in or visiting the city.
Another advantage of living in Brussels is the high standard of living. The city offers excellent healthcare and education facilities. The healthcare system in Belgium is one of the best in the world, and the education system is highly regarded internationally. There are also numerous international schools in Brussels, making it an ideal city for expats with children.
Brussels is also a city that is known for its food and drink. Belgian chocolates and beers are famous worldwide, and living in Brussels gives you the opportunity to enjoy these treats on a regular basis. The city is also home to a wide variety of restaurants offering cuisines from around the world, reflecting the city’s multicultural population.
Finally, Brussels is a city that is known for its vibrant nightlife. The city has a wide range of bars, clubs, and live music venues. The Delirium Café, for instance, holds the Guinness World Record for the most varieties of beer available in one place. The city also hosts numerous festivals and events throughout the year, such as the Brussels Summer Festival, which features live music, street performances, and food stalls.
Cons of Living in Brussels, Belgium
Despite the many advantages, living in Brussels also has its disadvantages. One of the biggest challenges of living in Brussels is dealing with the city’s notorious traffic. Brussels is often ranked as one of the most congested cities in Europe. The city’s narrow streets and high population density can make driving in the city a stressful experience.
Another disadvantage of living in Brussels is the high cost of living. While salaries in Brussels are generally high, so are the costs of housing, food, and other essentials. This can make living in the city quite expensive, especially for those on a tight budget.
The weather in Brussels can also be a downside for some people. The city has a maritime temperate climate, which means it has mild summers and cool winters. However, the city is also known for its frequent rain and grey skies, which can be a bit depressing for those used to sunnier climates.
While Brussels is a multicultural city, this can also lead to a sense of fragmentation. The city is officially bilingual, with French and Dutch being the official languages. However, there are also large communities of expats and immigrants who speak other languages. This can sometimes lead to a lack of cohesion and a sense of community.
Finally, while Brussels is generally a safe city, like any large city, it does have its share of crime. Certain areas of the city are known to be less safe than others, especially at night. However, by taking the usual precautions, such as avoiding certain areas at night and being aware of your surroundings, you can minimize the risk.