Belgium’s libraries and bookstores are not just for hunting our foreign-language books – they also offer a range of services and events to meet new people.
Belgium’s libraries typically offer a range of services and activities for all ages, alongside a selection of books and DVDs, sometimes in English and other foreign languages. You can also find a range of bookstores in Belgium that stock English books and a range of material in other languages.
Typically Belgian libraries have small foreign language sections, but may stock a larger selection of English language books and newspapers.
Typically, you can also find free internet access for registered users, large print books for the visually impaired and DVDs in original languages. Most libraries usually close Sundays.
Libraries and bookstores in Brussels
Brussels can point to a large number of libraries that offer a range of public services.
The Royal Library of Belgium houses the famous Fetis archives and, remarkably, every single book published in the country or written by a Belgian citizen. It holds concerts, as well as storytelling for children during school holidays, and runs guided tours.
The Children’s Library contains a large selection of books and comics in English for children and teenagers, with titles that are constantly being renewed. Also of interest for children is the Centre Crousse, which offers a toy library.
Away from libraries, a range of English and international books can be found at the following bookstores, to name a few:
Pêle Mêle is a store selling second-hand English books, video games, CDs and DVDs.
Libraries in Antwerp
In Antwerp the Permeke library runs a book club where readers are invited to poetry readings twice a month. In fact, using the libraries in Antwerp can benefit you further as you can collect points on your ‘A Card’, a loyalty card for use at leisure and cultural facilities in the city. The Permeke library also has a reading session for children every Sunday.
Libraries in Ghent
Libraries in Liège
Liège’s central library may have fewer modern English language books but an excellent choice of CDs and DVDs.