Meaning “King Charles,” Charleroi is the fifth most populous city in Belgium. Remote workers enjoy coliving spaces here with a cozy life and easy access to the rest of the world.
As a populous city, Charleroi has effective ways of getting around via bus, metro, and train. Cycling is also a popular option with an interactive map of bike paths. The commute to Brussels is 50 minutes, with 45 trains per day. The city’s international airport is only ten minutes from downtown. There are also several car rental and car-share services.
Just outside of the city the most stunning site is the Aulne Abbey. Founded in 637, it was originally a Benedictine monastery. When the French burned it at the end of the 18th century, all 40000 books were destroyed. The city’s coliving experience has several museums, but there are plenty of other things to try like indoor skydiving, a flight simulator, or even a boat cruise.
Belgian cuisine isn’t the healthiest but it’s certainly tasty. Try Belgian style pheasant stuffed with chicory. Another must-try that challenges French northern crepes is the Double Binchoise pancake, which is spicy cheese sandwiched between two beer and buckwheat pancakes.
The city has warm summers and cold winters. Winters are cold in the low 40s while summers are nice and never too hot in the low 70s. The nicest months to be there are May through August, with around 200 hours of sunshine each month.
Here are some fun facts about Charleroi:
- The city was built in 1666 by The Spanish and named after that king of Spain King Charles II, who became king at the age of four - aside from being king, he’s not remembered for anything aside from his title
- The townhall has 47 bells, which play the song “Land of Charleroi – It is you I love best” on the hour
- The citizens are called “noose bearers” after citizens lost a revolt to the king and he made them walk around with nooses hanging from their necks
- It has the second biggest airport in Belgium
- The city is governed by the Socialist Party despite several of their recent leaders having been convicted of fraud