Located on the western coast of Europe, the Kingdom of Belgium borders France and Germany as well as the smaller countries of the Netherlands and Luxembourg. Located on the western coast of Europe, Belgium was a founding member of the European Union and is the host country for important international organizations including NATO. With 11 million inhabitants and a land area under 12,000 square miles, Belgium is one of Europe's smaller nations.
Together with the Netherlands and Luxembourg, Belgian is one of the nations historically referred to as the "Low Countries. Today, Belgium is a diverse nation with three official languages: Dutch, French, and German. A number of minority languages are also spoken.
Compared to other European countries, Belgium has a large number of public celebrations taking the form of cavalcades, parades, processions, and local festivals. Tourists who book into vacation rentals in Belgium stand a high chance of seeing at least one of these, particularly if they plan for it in advance. Most public celebrations are based on either religious doctrine or folklore and mythology. Some examples of prominent festivals are the Procession of the Holy Blood, which takes place each year in Bruges, and the Walloon festival in Namur.
A favorite with tourists is the Procession of Giants and Dragons in the town of Ath. This takes place on the fourth weekend in August each year and features huge figures of David and Goliath. Re-enactments at the event include Goliath's wedding as well as his celebrated battle with David.