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Belgium

Mechelen Coronavirus Covid-19 Update – Cases Quarantine Deaths Stats

Mechelen is a historically important city located on the river Dyle in the center of Flanders, one of the three regions in Belgium. It lies about halfway between Antwerp and Brussels and has approximately 80,000 inhabitants.

Belgian Covid-19 Situation Report
114,179
Confirmed
1,376
Confirmed (24h)
9,996
Deaths
0
Deaths (24h)
8.8%
Deaths (%)
19,275
Recovered
29
Recovered (24h)
84,908
Active

Due to its proximity to the Belgian Capital Brussels, Mechelen is often overlooked by tourists. This is really a pity, because Mechelen has much to offer and it is not quite as expensive a city as Brussels. It also has a very rich history: perhaps richer than its big sister, Brussels. You don’t, for instance, have to dig very deep into history to discover that, at one point, Mechelen was actually the capital of Netherlands!

In the recent years though, we have tended to see situations where folks view Mechelen as a place they just pass through (on trains, cars or buses), as they move from the airport in Brussels to their real destinations. That notwithstanding though, it is worth noting that Mechelen is a vibrant city, which has found a way of synchronizing its history with its present. It is, in other words, one of the historical cities that have resisted the temptation to be held hostage by their rich historical heritages. It is a living, historic city.

Understand

Though now in the shadow of Brussels, Mechelen is a historically important city in its own right. From 1506 to 1530 it was the former capital of the Netherlands under Margaret of Austria. In 1559 it became an archbishopric, a sign of great importance. It was famous for its wood carvings, some of which can still be seen in the churches of the city, and for lace and tapestry manufacture.

Today it is a vibrant town, mixing trendy and traditional. Its carillon school is world-renowned, training students from all over the world in the art of playing carillons, sets of 24 or more bells hung in church towers. Shops downtown are often housed in buildings with the old-style Flemish architecture, but offer edgy fashions sure to appeal to the younger generation.

Mechelen is developing into the center of non-profit or non-governmental organizations for Flanders. Some famous examples are Natuurpunt, AFS, and the Red Cross. This is mainly because it’s very easily reachable (by train or by highway) but not as expensive as Brussels.

Inhabitants are called “Maneblussers” (moon-extinguishers). The story goes that one day long time ago the moonlight was shining on the unfinished St.-Romboutstoren and that some people thought it was burning. The whole city was mobilized to extinguish the fire but there was no fire to extinguish.

Mechelen has his own local encyclopedia, called Mechelen Mapt, written in Dutch with short translations in English.

Get in

Cheap Flights to Brussels

OriginDeparture dateReturn dateFind Ticket

Budapest

04.10.2020

11.10.2020

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Vienna

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Bucharest

06.11.2020

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Sofia

18.10.2020

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Barcelona

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London

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Lviv

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By train

Mechelen is easily reached by train. From Brussels and Antwerp it takes about 25 minutes.

By bus

You can also reach by taking a bus from Antwerp. Just outside the main train station you’ll find a bus station with connections to many places in the vicinity.

By car

Mechelen lies at the E19-highway.

Getting around Mechelen

Public transport within Mechelen is mostly by bus. The buses ply routes originating from the city center to the slightly outlying parts. There are, however, just a few of these: thanks to the fact that Mechelen is what can be best described as small, neatly packaged city.

There is a train station in Mechelen (from where you can get a connection to Brussels and other places). You will notice, however, that the train station is not exactly in the city center. It is a few kilometers a way, but still within a distance you can comfortably walk.

Like most smallish cities, Mechelen offers the option of being explored on foot. This is indeed the option to take, if you want to fully and genuinely tour Mechelen: where the past and the present (in terms of history) seem to co-exist without major conflicts.

Things to see and do in Mechelen

You can start your Mechelen tour with a brief visit to the information center (which is conveniently located in the main square). This will add value to your visit, as you will have a chance to obtain comprehensive information on the city’s attractions. Moreover, there are folks from the tourist information center giving guided tours.

Even if you don’t have a chance to see anything else in Mechelen, you should, at the very least, see St. Rumbold’s Cathedral, dating as far back as the year 1200. It is an amazing edifice, even by today’s standards – especially given its natural looking beauty.

There is also the Refuge of the Abbey of Tongerlo, whose construction seems to have taken extreme ingenuity.

In the old city of Mechelen, you will encounter several cute buildings from as far back as the 1500s, and the fact that they have managed to remain in solid form to this day will surely awe you. Their beauty is in another class altogether (and you will be amazed at the lengths people in generations before ours were willing to go to manually decorate their dwellings).

The Palace (which was at one time where the Queen of Austria ruled the Netherlands) will also surely take your breath away, especially when you get to see its amazing gardens.

While in Mechelen, you may also consider paying a visit to the Museum of Toys (yes, there is such an entity) and the clocks and watches museum.

Mechelen is a city blessed with extensive waterways, and if you can spare a small amount of time and money, you can get a chance to cruise in the said waterways, and in the process get to savor more and more of Mechelen’s sights.

Buy

  • The main shopping streets are Bruul and IJzerenleen, both radiating out from the Market Square.
  • There are several chocolate shops near the Grote Markt, but try the local one, Gauthier, on the IJzerenleen; it’s very good and not as pricey as Neuhaus. They also have some spice cakes and cookies.
  • If you’re around on a Saturday morning there’s an open market in the Grote Markt and the Botermarkt. There are a lot of food stands (cheese, meat, seafood, produce, some prepared food) but also some others (basic clothing, shoes, linens).
  • There’s a Match supermarket on Haverwerf, if you need supplies for self-catering. The Smatch on the Blauwhondstraat (between IJzerenleen and Bruul, near the Grote Markt) is smaller but is open Sunday mornings.

Brewery Het Anker

Features locally brewed Mechelse Bruynen and Gouden Carolus. Don’t miss the opportunity to try some of their own jenever called Ouwe Klare or the beer chocolates. They also have a small shop where they sell their products. They have tours some weekends. It is wise to call ahead and ask specifically what will be available during your trip.

Where to stay in Mechelen

Stay safe in Mechelen

While Mechelen used to have one of the highest crime rates in Flanders, it is safe to walk through Mechelen now. The city has improved much over the last years, especially in the tourist areas. You may want to keep out of the outskirts at night, though, but there is not much to do there anyway.

Telecommunications in Mechelen

The city phone code for Mechelen is 015.

Go next

  • Antwerp — Major port town north of Mechelen, with a large shopping, diamond and fashion scene.
  • Brussels — The lively and diverse national capital is only a short train ride away.
  • Leuven — Nearly as lively as Antwerp or Brussels is this college town, home to one of the world’s oldest universities is here. Many hotels also cater to businessmen who wish not to stay in Brussels.
  • Lier — Nearby small town with some medieval sights.

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Reporting mainly on the Asia Pacific region and the global Coronavirus crises in countries such as the United States, Mainland China, Brazil, Mexico, Italy and Germany. Love to Travel and report daily on destinations reopening with a focus on Domestic travel within Europe, North America and the Caribbean. Fan of the English Premier League , the German Bundesliga,, the Spanish La Liga.

Alpes-de-Haute-Provence

European Union Borders / Schengen to Shut due to Coronavirus Covid-19

The European Union’s external borders will be closed to non-essential travel  for 30 days as of Tuesday to fight the spread of the coronavirus, while France is following Italy and Spain in imposing a nationwide lockdown for at least 15 days.

In an address to the nation Monday night, President Emmanuel Macron announced France was at war against COVID-19. He announced new measures both within France and across the EU to contain its spread.

Macron said as of midday Tuesday, the EU and Europe’s visa-free Schengen zone borders would be shut for 30 days for all but essential travel. Earlier in the day, European Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen said she had made the recommendation to the 27-member bloc.

Macron also announced a minimum 15-day lockdown across France and its territories. People must drastically limit their movement outside their homes to essential work, errands and health services also as of Tuesday midday. Getting together with friends and non-household family members is forbidden, and violators risk punishment.

The new restrictions come amid surging numbers of coronavirus cases here — and as some hospitals increasingly struggle to cope with an overload of sick patients, especially in the eastern part of the country.

Macron also said the second round of local elections would be postponed, along with a series of unpopular reforms his government has pushed through in recent months. He announced measures to support businesses hard hit by the coronavirus, including more than $335 billion in tax and other relief.

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Belgium

Belgium Significantly Tightened Corona Measures

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Infection numbers in Belgium are increasing strongly again and the government has announced stricter contact restrictions to prevent another lockdown.

As of Wednesday, the Belgians may only meet a maximum of five people privately with whom they do not live together, Prime Minister Sophie Wilmès said yesterday. Until now, private meetings with up to 15 people were allowed.

In addition, a night curfew was imposed in Antwerp and residents may no longer leave their houses and apartments between 23:30 and 06:00. All bars and restaurants in the port city have to close at 11 p.m. Contact sports are prohibited and all team sports for adults. Home office for companies in Antwerp is mandatory if the employer allows it.

In the rest of the country, public events in closed rooms are limited to 100 people and if you want to go shopping, you have to do it alone and only within a 30 minutes time-frame.

Wilmès was “very concerned” about the recent increase in infection rates. According to their information, the new rules will initially apply for four weeks and aim to prevent national curfews within Belgium.

According to the authorities, an average of 279 Belgians were infected per day last week, compared to 163 per day the previous week. As of Monday, more than 66,000 corona cases and 9,821 deaths were recorded in Belgium.

Belgium Coronavirus Report
114,179
Confirmed
1,376
Confirmed (24h)
9,996
Deaths
0
Deaths (24h)
8.8%
Deaths (%)
19,275
Recovered
29
Recovered (24h)
16.9%
Recovered (%)
84,908
Active
74.4%
Active (%)

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Belgium

Mons Coronavirus Covid-19 Update – Cases Quarantine Deaths Stats

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Mons in Belgium is probably one of the first places in Europe that were inhabited by human beings: with archeological evidence suggesting that there were people here as early as in the Neolithic period.

Belgian Covid-19 Situation Report
114,179
Confirmed
1,376
Confirmed (24h)
9,996
Deaths
0
Deaths (24h)
8.8%
Deaths (%)
19,275
Recovered
29
Recovered (24h)
84,908
Active

Mons (Dutch: Bergen, not to be confused with the namesake city in Norway) is the capital of the Belgian province of Hainaut, in the region of Wallonia. The town is a worthy place to base yourself for a multi-day exploration of the Hainaut region.

It is home to some of the most amazing historic buildings from the middle ages that you can find anywhere in the world. It is a place where you can see how human development has been over the years: with ancient buildings standing side by side with modern buildings. With a population of just under 100,000 people, Mons is big enough to be lively, yet at the same time, small enough to be termed as ‘cute’ in the realest sense of the word.

Understand

Mons was the European Capital of Culture in 2015, together with Plzeň in the Czech Republic.

Get in

Airports

  • Brussels Airport
  • Brussels South Charleroi Airport

Cheap Flights to Brussels

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Athens

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Kharkiv

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Porto

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Prague

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Lviv

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By train

The train station is walking distance west of the historic centre. There are regular train links with Brussels, Charleroi, Tournai, all nodes in the Belgian train network. The national railway company of Belgium is called SNCB in French.

By car

Take the Mons exit from the E19/E42

Getting around Mons

Mons is one of the few places where you can find absolutely free (zero-fare) urban buses. Yes, you heard it right: in Mons, you just have to jump onto any bus and you won’t have to pay a cent, for a trip within the city center. Take note though, that it is only the short distance buses, doing the ‘town service’ within the city center (the ones that are painted white) that are for free. The yellow ones, doing longer distances, demand fares.

There is also the option of using the train. The train will, however, only get you to Mons and around a few places in Mons.

Further on is the option of hiring a car, and using it to get around Mons. This is not a very clever move, because for one, Mons is a smallish city: the sort of city that doesn’t quite justify being explored on a car. More importantly though, you will come to realize that there are places where cars are discouraged from going in Mons, and most of those are actually the sorts of places that would be of most interest to you as a person looking to savor the awesome sights Mons has to offer.

Being a small city, Mons can be quite extensively explored by foot, and this is indeed a worthwhile adventure. The cobbled streets you will be doing most of the walking on are just amazing.

If you are a keen observer, you will notice, as you try to get around Mons, that many of the streets that encompass the city are actually built where the fortifying walls of the city once stood. The experience of being there is just surreal, as are the sights you come across.

Things to do and see in Mons

In order to take in as much of what Mons has to offer as possible, it makes sense to start your exploration of the city at the main square – located in the old city. While in the square, you will probably feel as if you have been taken back to another age: thanks to the nature of the buildings you will be see, the cobbled streets and so much more. This is also a place where you can do a bit of dining (as there are many fine restaurants) and a bit of shopping.

The Mons city hall is definitely a sight to behold, and a historical monument in its own right.

The Mayor’s Garden (Le Jardin du Maieur) is another interesting sight, with its remarkable fountain.

Towering at more than 80 meters, the Mons Belfry (built using the Baroque style) is a feature that will leave you awed.

You will also want to make a stopover at the Guardhouse Monkey, and perhaps even have a chance to make a wish upon it (it being, supposedly, a feature that was installed, hundreds of years ago, to bring good luck to the residents of Mons).

While in Mons, you may also consider visiting the Spanish House, the Royal Conservatory and St Waltrude Collegiate Church. All of these are amazing from an architectural and historical point of view.

Events

  • The Ducasse de Mons of Doudou is the name of a week-long series of festivities or Ducasse, which originates from the 14th century and takes place every year on Trinity Sunday. Highlights include:
    • The entrusting of the reliquary of Saint Waltrude to the mayor of the city on the eve of the procession.
    • The placement of the reliquary on the Car d’Or (golden carriage), before it is carried in the city streets in a colourful procession that counts more than a thousand costumed participants.
    • The lifting of the Car d’Or on a paved area near the church of Saint Waltrude; tradition holds that this operation must be successful for the city to prosper.
    • The Lumeçon fight, where Saint George confronts the dragon. The fight lasts for about half an hour, accompanied by the rhythmic “Doudou” music. The tradition of the processional dragon is listed among the Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity.

Where to stay in Mons

Go next

  • The historic town of Nimy is a few kilometers to the north up the N6.
  • The Grand-Large Marina is close to the IMAGIPARK amusement park, and is a good place to start a canal tour of the local waterways.
  • The MAC’s in Grand-Hornu (via TEC Bus lines 7 and 9) is a beautiful museum in a superb historic industrial coal site. Visit also the places near Grand-Hornu where Vincent Van Gogh lived.
  • Cambron-Casteau — home to Pairi Daiza, a popular animal park north of Mons on the way to Ath.

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Covid-19 Belgium

Covid-19 Belgium
114,179
Confirmed
1,376
Confirmed (24h)
0
Deaths (24h)
29
Recovered (24h)
According to the Government in Belgium, Belgium has confirmed 1,376 new Covid-19 infections within Belgium in the last 24 hours and furthermore 0 deaths have been reported throughout Belgium. With the new deaths of 0, Belgium now has a total of 114,179 Coronavirus/Covid-19 infections and the official death rate reported by the government of Belgium is 8.8%. 9,996 died in Belgium.

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