Community and events
450,000 registered motorcycles
As the intersection of France, Germany and the Netherlands, Belgium is a melting-pot of European cultures where bikers are well-represented. There is a number of regular motorcycling events, including:
NOC Begonia Rally – The Brit-based Norton Owners Club runs this annual rally from the village of Staden, around 60 miles from Calais.
Classic Bikes Chimay – Take in some classic bike racing at the Circuit de Chimay, and afterwards sample the local Trappist beer!
Charléville-Mèzieres to Dinant
This route is a favourite, but go anywhere in the Ardennes and you won’t be disappointed. Gorgeous forest countryside, historic locations and a pleasant climate make the region a playground for anyone on two wheels. Great food and drink is plentiful too, so take your time and enjoy those rest stops.
Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps
This legendary circuit, which serves as the venue for the Belgian Formula One Grand Prix, is well worth the visit for racing fans. There are regular Biker’s Day events at the circuit, which offer instructors and safety professionals to give keen amateurs the chance experience the thrill of the race.
Safety and the law
7.2 annual road fatalities per 100,000 people (2012)
PTWs account for 17% of fatalities (2011)
Belgium has a relatively good safety record for motorcyclists, although care should be taken around the Brussels area, which is notorious for potholes. As in France, motorcycles need to use dipped headlights at all times, including in daylight.
King Philippe of Belgium is well-known for his love of motorcycles, and in 2011 issued a Royal decree allowing motorcyclists to park on the pavements of Brussels as long as they do not obstruct pedestrians. Bikers can also use bus lanes and filter in the two leftmost lanes of motorways if they do not exceed 50kph (31mph).
59% of population speak English
Belgium is a multilingual country, with Dutch in the north, French in the south and German in a tiny corner to the east making up the three official languages. English is widely spoken (moreso in the Dutch parts), with many Belgians using it as a second language.