Filled with fascinating historical features and plenty of things to eat, drink, see and do, Brussels is a brilliant place to study. Located right in the centre of Belgium, and composed of 19 municipalities, Brussels is home to around 1.2 million people. There are around 86, 000 students enrolled in universities in Brussels, and together they make up no less than a quarter of the total student population in Belgium. The number of students coming to Brussels for higher education has increased steadily over the last decade, so there is no denying that the Belgian capital is a very popular city to study in.
Brussels is a metropole with rich cultural offerings, with plenty to delight art lovers, foodies and friends of good literature alike. From the magnificent architecture of the Grand Palace and the Manneken Pis to the classic delicacies such as waffles and chips with mayonnaise, and from the Grand Market to the Belgian Royal Museum of Fine Arts, Brussels has so much to offer. You will be hard pressed to see all of the amazing sights of this world famous city, even if you are planning to visit for a three or four year long university course.
There are over a dozen universities in Brussels, including the Université Libre de Bruxelles (which is a predominantly French speaking university), the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (predominantly Dutch speaking), Le Cambre and Saint Louis University.
The ULB and the VUB often rank very high in international university rankings. Both of these universities’ names mean the same thing: “the free university of Brussels”; they were originally a single entity, but split up in the 1960’s. Both universities, in addition to study programmes in either Dutch or French, also offer a wide range of graduate level courses in English.
Brussels is one of the most liveable cities in the world (ranked in the top 30 by Mercer), and one of the best student cities. Although living in Brussels can be costly, if you can manage to find student accommodation or a room in a shared house, you can make your stay abroad very affordable. There is a lot to see and do in Brussels, with all it has to offer its international community, you are sure to feel right at home.