International Studies Abroad ®est. 1987


Culture Corner

Getting Around Brussels

Within the city center, walking is the preferred method of transportation. It's the best way to learn street names, experience the personality of each neighborhood, and soak up the local culture. Be sure to bring comfortable shoes and be prepared to walk much more than you might be used to at home!

Besides walking, most Belgians travel by public transportation, either the metro, tram or by bus. Students can expect to use public transport, especially the métro, on a daily basis, and sometimes, several times a day. For more information on public transportation students should visit the STIB (Brussels public transportation site): STIB
Commutes to the city center can often be around 25-30 minutes, which is a normal commute for Belgians. Students can often expect a ride of 45 minutes or more to Vesalius as it is located southeast of the city center.

To learn more about the different ways to navigate Brussels, please read the descriptions below.

Types of Transportation

The metro runs underground and travels throughout the city as well as to other outlying neighborhoods, called communes. There are 6 metro lines running the length of the city and are convenient for travelling longer lengths. The metro stop closest to Vesalius is Petillon.

The tram runs through the city and is the most convenient way to get around downtown. It's both above ground and underground at different places in the city. The closest tram stop to Vesalius is called Arsenal/Arsenaal.

Students can take the bus throughout Brussels and many buses visit the surrounding communes to a much greater extent than the metro or tram routes.

There are public transportation stops at the three main train stations that givesthe student access to travel by train both domestically and internationally.

Transportation Passes

Monthly Pass
The best value for those who are in the city for several months is a month pass. This pass will allow you to travel the public transportation of Brussels and surrounding communes via metro, bus or tram.

Single Fare, 5-Journey, 10-Journey, 1-Day or 3-Day Passes
These passes are available to visitors to the city depending on how often they may or may not use public transportation.

Brussels Card
This card can be purchased for either 24, 48 or 72 hours and allows for entrance to over 30 museums in Brussels, as well as providing discounts to shops, attractions, and guided tours. Students can also purchase combined formulae Brussels Card AND Hop on Hop off buses, giving them a 50% discount on these buses.

The MOBIB card is the same as a monthly transportation pass but it's a new way of documenting travel as of the summer of 2010. The card provides the advantage of being able to refill the card online or in public transport stations. Students can begin their month of travel on any day they please as well.

For more information on fares and restrictions, please visit the STIB website.