Did you know that most Belgian cities have two names?

Our capital is not called ‘Brussels’, but ‘Bruxelles’ or ‘Brussel’. Yes, this might be confusing when you’re trying to get around. Allow us to explain. 

Belgium is officially a trilingual country. Dutch, French and German are our national languages. In Flanders, we speak Dutch, the Walloons speak French, in Brussels, we speak both, and in the German-speaking east they speak, well, German. Why that is, you can read here.

Of course cities have an official name in the language of the region where they are situated. But they also have a name in the other main language. This can be confusing when you’re on the train and you don’t recognize the name of your destination. Or when you’re driving on the motorway and have no idea where to go. Before panic sets in, let us help you out with this list.


Written By

Journalist, traveller, book wurm. A night owl with a sweet tooth and a love for languages.