Belfries are medieval alarm bell towers, often in town centers. In the 13th century they were wooden constructions. From the 14th till the 17th century they were built in stone. The nowadays remaining examples date from that period in history.
In 1999 the Unesco inscribed 32 Belgian towers onto the World Heritage List. In 2005 the belfry of Gembloux, as well as 23 belfries in the northern French regions of Nord-Pas-de-Calais and Picardi were added to the final list "Belfries of Belgium and France". From our list only the City Hall Belfry in Brussels is not on the list, as it already is part of the Grand Place World Heritage Site (Brussels City Square).
In Flanders a "Belfry" is called a "Belfort" (plural: Belforten). In Wallonia and France they are called "Beffroi" (plural: Beffrois).
History has decided to establish a border between the Belgian and French Belfries. Fortunately the Unesco has considered them as a whole. As so often the map shows clearly why this is correct.
The GPS-Coordinates for the French Belfries are correct also. We present both the Belgian and the French Belfries as a whole, as they are presented as one group to the Unesco World Heritage List.
|Belgian and French Belfries||WGS 84|
|1||Antwerp, City Hall with Belfry||597716||5675376||31||51.221399||4.399268|
|2||Antwerp, Cathedral of Our Lady||597765||5675272||31||51.220455||4.399941|
|3||Bruges, Tower of the Halls with Belfry||515693||5673031||31||51.208462||3.224652|
|4||Herentals, Former Town Hall and Cloth Halls||628318||5671104||31||51.176946||4.835742|
|5||Eeklo, Town Hall with Belfry||539615||5670466||31||51.184239||3.566810|
|6||Lier, Town Hall with Belfry||609839||5665569||31||51.131041||4.569803|
|7||Nieuwpoort, Town Hall with Belfry||482634||5664252||31||51.129471||2.751822|
|8||Veurne, Country House with Belfry||476369||5657939||31||51.072479||2.662704|
|9||Ghent, Cloth Hall with Belfry||550822||5656036||31||51.053604||3.725114|
|10||Dunkerque, City Hall with Belfry||456394||5654303||31||51.038614||2.378044|
|11||Mechelen, St. Rumbolds cathedral||603636||5654094||31||51.029044||4.477893|
|12||Mechelen, Town Hall with Belfry||603851||5653984||31||51.028017||4.480926|
|13||Dunkerque, St. Eloi Church||456256||5653964||31||51.035556||2.376117|
|14||Dendermonde, Town Hall with Belfry||577024||5653838||31||51.030926||4.098428|
|15||Diksmuide, Town Hall with Belfry||490502||5653579||31||51.033680||2.864544|
|16||Tielt, Cloth Hall with Belfry||522955||5649924||31||51.000433||3.327139|
|18||Lo-Reninge, Former Town Hall with Belfry||482392||5647705||31||50.980668||2.749169|
|20||Calais, Town Hall with Belfry||419503||5645209||31||50.952869||1.853967|
|21||Aalst, Aldermen's House with Belfry||572954||5643506||31||50.938561||4.038322|
|22||Roeselare, Town Hall with Belfry||508747||5643458||31||50.942679||3.124502|
|23||Leuven, St. Peter's Church with Belfry||619671||5637814||31||50.879595||4.701106|
|24||Brussels, City Hall with Belfry||595139||5633615||31||50.846406||4.351412|
|25||Zoutleeuw, St. Leonard's Church||648105||5633394||31||50.833287||5.103239|
|26||Ypres, Cloth Hall with Belfry||491942||5633268||31||50.851054||2.885530|
|27||Oudenaarde, Town Hall with Belfry||542497||5632622||31||50.843740||3.603610|
|28||St. Truiden, Town Hall with Belfry||653973||5631588||31||50.815526||5.185749|
|29||Kortrijk, Hall Tower with Belfry||518699||5630702||31||50.827733||3.265501|
|30||Tienen, St. Germanus Church||636538||5630250||31||50.807874||4.937910|
|31||Tongeren, Basilica of Our Lady||673733||5628358||31||50.780917||5.464466|
|32||Menen, Town Hall with Belfry||508451||5627170||31||50.796211||3.119912|
|33||Comines, Town Hall with Belfry||500466||5623726||31||50.765301||3.006608|
|34||Bailleul, Town Hall with Belfry||481262||5620916||31||50.739729||2.734444|
|35||Boulogne, Town Hall with Belfry||402127||5620225||31||50.725571||1.613331|
|36||Armentières, Town Hall with Belfry||491699||5614959||31||50.686401||2.882491|
|37||Aire-sur-la-Lys, Town Hall with Belfry||457317||5609813||31||50.638619||2.396391|
|38||Lille, City Hall with Belfry||504930||5608746||31||50.630565||3.069706|
|39||Loos, Town Hall with Belfry||501041||5607013||31||50.615000||3.014714|
|45||Charleroi, Town Hall with Belfry||602578||5585437||31||50.412005||4.443717|
|46||Binche, Town Hall with Belfry||582824||5584944||31||50.410690||4.165652|
|47||Hesdin, Town Hall with Belfry||431477||5580556||31||50.373074||2.036385|
|48||Douai, Town Hall with Belfry||505709||5579527||31||50.367784||3.080274|
|50||Arras, Town Hall with Belfry||484153||5571003||31||50.290938||2.777535|
|53||Cambrai, St. Martin Church||516523||5558053||31||50.174452||3.231391|
|54||Doullens, Former Town Hall with Belfry||452932||5556134||31||50.155555||2.341110|
We only present some more info about the Belgian Belfries and leave the Northern part of France to someone who wants to do the same kind of project as we have done for Belgium.
1 Antwerp City Hall with Belfry. Completed in 1564, but totally renovated in 1882 - 1891.
2 Antwerp, Cathedral of Our Lady. The cathedral is the biggest Gothic building of what are now Holland and Belgium. The 123 m high Belfry was completed in 1521. Open on weekdays from 10 AM - 5 PM. Saturdays from 10 AM - 3 PM.
3 Bruges, Tower of the Halls with Belfry. This 83 m high Belfry from 1300 contains 48 big bells. On the second floor is a small museum. Open from Tuesday - Sunday from 9.30 AM - 5 PM.
4 Herentals, Former Town Hall with Belfry. Rebuilt in 1534 this Belfry has 50 bells. Open from Tuesday - Friday from 2 PM - 5 PM. During the weekends and on public holidays from 2 PM - 6 PM.
5 Eeklo, Town Hall with Belfry. The building is from the 17th century. The Belfry was added in 1932. Open on weekdays from 8.30 AM - Noon.
6 Lier, Town Hall with Belfry. Building from the 14th century with Gothic Belfry. Open for groups after arrangement at the Tourist Office. For individuals from April - October, every Sunday afternoon at 2.30 PM.
7 Nieuwpoort, Town Hall with Belfry. Building from 1480. Rebuilt after WW I. The Belfry is 35 m high. The Hall is now exclusively used for exhibitions.
8 Veurne, Country House with Belfry. Country House with Belfry from 1628. The building houses the Tourist Office. The Belfry can not be visited.
9 Ghent, Cloth Hall with Belfry. The 91 m high Belfry, built adjacent to the 15 th century Cloth Hall, has 52 bells. Open from mid March - mid November daily from 10 AM - 12.30 PM and from 2 PM - 6 PM. From May - September and Easter Sunday free guided tour at 2.10 PM, 3.10 PM, and at 4.10 PM. From the Belfry you have a splendid view over the city of Ghent.
11 Mechelen, St. Rumbolds cathedral. The 97 m high Belfry has two carillons, each with 49 bells. The tower can be visited from Easter - the end of September in the weekends and on public holidays at 2.15 PM. From June 1 - mid September also on Mondays at 7 PM. In July and August daily at 2.15 PM.
12 Mechelen, Town Hall with Belfry. Town Hall in two parts. The oldest part from the 14th century was the Cloth Hall. The rest was added in the 16th century. The Town Hall can only be visited with a guide.
14 Dendermonde, Town Hall with Belfry. Town Hall from the 14th century. Rebuilt in the 20th century. Open on weekdays from 9 AM - Noon and from 1.30 PM - 4.30 PM.
15 Diksmuide, Town Hall with Belfry. The Town Hall was rebuilt after WW I. Open on weekdays from 9 AM - Noon and from 2 PM - 5 PM.
16 Tielt, Cloth Hall with Belfry. This 17th century Belfry has a carillon with 36 bells. Open by appointment with the Tourist Office.
18 Lo-Reninge, Former Town Hall with Belfry. Former 16th century Town Hall, now a hotel-restaurant.
21 Aalst, Aldermen's House with Belfry. Gothic Belfry from the 15th century. Restored in the 19th century. Carillon with 52 bells.
22 Roeselare, Town Hall with Belfry. The old part of the Town Hall dates from 1770. In 1924 the new part and a modern Belfry was added to the building. Can only be visited with guide after arrangement.
23 Leuven, St. Peter's Church with Belfry. Early 15th century church in Brabant Gothic style, but never completed. Open from Tuesday - Friday from 10 AM - 5 PM. Saturdays from 10 AM - 4.30 PM and Sundays from 2 PM - 5 PM.
24 Brussels, City Hall with Belfry. Situated at and overlooking one of the most splendid town squares of Europe, Grand'Place, the 15th century City Hall is a Gothic masterpiece itself.
25 Zoutleeuw, St. Leonard's Church. Gothic building from the early 13th century, completed in the 15th century. The interior is a museum with inestimable pieces of art. Open from Easter till end of September from Tuesday - Sunday from 2 PM - 5 PM. In October on Sundays from 2 PM - 5 PM.
26 Ypres, Cloth Hall with Belfry. The Belfry is 70 meters high and has a carillon with 49 bells, but can not be visited.
27 Oudenaarde (Audenarde), Town Hall with Belfry. One of the most beautiful Gothic buildings of the 16th century. It houses the Town museum with a big collection of wall tapestries, as well as a splendid silver collection, all from the 16th - the 18th century. During weekends and on public holidays there is a guided tour for individual visitors at 2 PM and at 4 PM. From April - October also on week days at 11 AM and at 3 PM.
28 St. Truiden, Town Hall with Belfry. The Belfry is from 1366. The Town Hall is built around it and houses the Tourist Office. Can only be visited by groups after arrangement.
29 Kortrijk, Hall Tower with Belfry. The Hall dates from the Middle Ages. In 1520 the upper part was rebuilt. The Belfry has a carillon with 48 bells. Can only be visited by groups by appointment.
30 Tienen, St. Germanus Church. Originally a Roman church from the 12th century, but often rebuilt in history. The 64 meters high Tower has a carillon. Church open every day from 9 AM - 4 PM. The Belfry only by appointment with the Tourist Office.
31 Tongeren, Basilica of Our Lady. Monumental Gothic Basilica from 1240 - 1544. Modified in the 19th century. The Tower is 64 meters high. Open daily from 8 AM - Noon and from 1.30 PM - 5 PM.
32 Menen, Town Hall with Belfry. The 33 meters high Belfry has a carillon with 49 bells. Open: the key can be obtained at the Tourist Office.
40 Tournai, Belfry. The oldest Belfry in Belgium, built in the 12th century. In 1294 the Tower has been heightened to 72 meters. Important restoration in 2000. In the Belfry there are two big municipal clocks from 1392 and a carillon with 44 bells from the 15th - 19th century. Open from Tuesday - Saturday from 10 AM - 1 PM and from 2 PM - 5.30 PM. On Sundays from 2 PM - 5 PM.
41 Gembloux, Belfry. Built in phases from the 12th - the 19th century and rebuilt in 1906 after a fire had destroyed it.
43 Namur, Belfry. Also called the Tower of St. Jacob. Originating from the 14th century and 'only' 20 meters high. Can only be visited by appointment.
44 Mons, Belfry. Tower from the 17th century with a carillon with 49 bells. Closed due to important restoration works.
45 Charleroi, Town Hall with Belfry. The Tower is 70 meters high, built with blue and white stones and bricks. The carillon has 47 bells. Open Mondays - Fridays from 8 AM - Noon and from 1 PM - 4.30 PM.
46 Binche, Town Hall with Belfry. The Town Hall was built in the 14th century. The Belfry was rebuilt end 16th century. Open from Monday - Thursday from 8 AM - Noon and from 1 PM - 6 PM. On Fridays from 8 AM - Noon.
49 Thuin, Belfry. This Belfry dates from 1639. Open from April 1 - October 31 from Tuesday - Sunday from 11 AM - 6 PM.