Romania: Facts and Information

Here are some facts about Romania.

  • Romania is a country in Eastern Europe, bordered by Hungary, Bulgaria, Ukraine, Serbia and Moldova. It is the 7th most populous country in the European Union with a population of 20 million.
  • The capital and largest city is Bucharest, which became the country’s capital in 1862. It was known as Little Paris between the world wars, because of its elegant buildings.

  • Romania became a Communist country after World War II.
  • A violent revolution in 1989 was one of the few in Europe which successfully resulted in the end of Communist rule.
  • The Romanian city of Timisoara was the first in Europe to have electric street lighting, in 1889. It was also the first European city to have horse drawn trams.

Flag of Romania

  • Brasov’s Black Church has one of Europe’s largest organs, with 4,000 pipes.
  • The country is also home to one of the tallest wooden churches, the 93 metre tall Sapanta Peri monastery.
  • Bucharest’s Parliament building is one of the largest buildings in the world, covering 330,000 square metres.
  • The city also has the fourth largest mass transit network in Europe, carrying over 600,000 people each day.
  • The famous novel Dracula was inspired by the real life Romanian ruler Vlad Tepes. Bran Castle is often called Dracula’s castle and has become one of the country’s most popular attractions.
  • Romania has one of the largest populations of gypsies in Europe.
  • The Carpathian Mountains are one of the largest unspoiled regions in Europe. About 60 percent of Europe’s black bears live there, as well as 400 other species of mammal.
  • The popular toy the Rubik’s Cube was invented by a Romanian (Erno Rubik). A Romanian scientist (Nicolas C. Paulescu) was the first person to discover insulin.

Belgium: Facts and Information

Belgium Fact File

Location: Belgium is a country in Western Europe. It has borders with France, Germany, Luxembourg and the Netherlands.

Capital: Brussels (also the largest city)

Population: Approximately 11 million

Area: 30528 sq km

Currency: Euro

Official Languages: Dutch, French and German.


The Flag of Belgium

The colours of the flag (black, yellow and red) were probably taken from the colours of the Duchy of Brabant (an old state in the Netherlands which was established in the 12th century and came to an end in the 15th century). The three vertical colour bands were probably influenced by the French flag.

Flag of Belgium

Other Facts About Belgium

  • The two largest regions of Belgium are Wallonia (French speaking) and Flanders (Dutch speaking).
  • Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg are together known as the Benelux countries.
  • Belgium gained its independence (from the Netherlands) in 1831, following the Belgian Revolution.
  • Germany invaded Belgium in both World War 1 and World War 2.
  • Belgium is one of the founding members of the European Union.
  • It is a highly industrialised country and it exports machinery, chemicals, finished diamonds and metal products.
  • The famous 16th century map-maker (cartographer), who produced a world map in 1569, was born the region that is now Belgium.
  • Most of Belgium’s population live in towns and cities. Some of the largest ones are: Brussels (also the capital of Belgium), Antwerp, Bruges, Liege and Namur.
  • Belgium is famous for several different types of food and drink, including: beer, waffles, chocolate and french fries  – which many people think originated in Belgium and not France. Belgians love to eat fries with mayonnaise.
  • Several sport stars were born in Belgium, including the tennis players Kim Clijsters and Justine Henin, the cyclist Eddy Merckx, and the soccer goalkeeper Jean-Marie Pfaff.
  • The 1920 Olympic Games was held in Antwerp in Belgium.
  • The actress Audrey Hepburn was born in Belgium, as was Jean-Claude Van Damme.