Miniature parks in Brussels

Mini-Europe

8.4/10

Mini-Europe is a park located in Bruparck at the foot of the Atomium in Brussels, Belgium. Mini-Europe has the reproductions of the most attractive monuments in the European Union on show, at a scale of 1:25. Roughly 80 cities and 350 buildings are represented.

The park is renowned for the quality of its models, some of which cost as much as €350,000 to make (the Brussels Grand-Place). The park contains numerous live action models (train, mills, eruption of Mount Vesuvius, Airbus, cable cars, etc. A guide gives the details on all the monuments. At the end of the visit, the “Spirit of Europe” exhibition gives an interactive overview of the European Union in the form of multimedia games. The park is built on an area of 24,000 m2. The initial investment was of €10 million in 1989, on its inauguration by Prince Philip of Belgium.

Building the monuments

The monuments were chosen for the quality of their architecture or their European symbolism. After this initial selection process, plans and photos needed to be found. This stage cost over €200,000 in research. Most of the monuments are made using moulds. The parts are made from various types of material, and then copied using silicone moulding. The final copy used to be cast from epoxy resin, but now polyester is used. Three of the monuments were made out of stone (e.g. the tower of Pisa, in marble). A new computer-assisted milling procedure was used for two of the models. After that comes the painting. Finally, the monument is installed on site, together with decorations and lighting. The Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela required more than 24,000 hours of work. Many of the monuments were financed by European countries or regions.

Simulations

Simulations make this large miniature park livelier – trains, mills, sounds, the eruption of Mount Vesuvius, the fall of the Berlin Wall, gondolas in Venice, cable cars, etc. These live action models are industrial prototypes designed to stand up to the numerous exhibition hours and different seasons (frost, rain, heat).

The gardens

Ground covers, dwarf trees, bonsais and grafted trees are used alongside miniature monuments, and the paths are adorned with classical bushes and flowers.

The Mini-Europe guide

A descriptive booklet gives copious information and anecdotes about the monuments and the European Union.

Spirit of Europe

At the end of the visit, the area dedicated to the European Union gives a brief overview of its history, successes, culture, the working of its institutions, the common market, and the reasons behind its expansion, which are generally presented via games. There is also a wealth of educational projects for schools. Mini-Europe has received the moral support of the European Commission and the European Parliament in all its activities.

Tourism in Brussels

With 300,000 visitors per year and a turnover of 3 million euros, Mini-Europe is one of Brussels’ leading attractions.

List of models

Austria

Belgium

Bulgaria

  • Rila Monastery, Rila Mountain, part of UNESCO World Heritage

Cyprus

  • Ancient Greek theatre, Kourion

Czech Republic

  • Prague Orloj

Denmark

Estonia

  • Great Coastal Gate and Fat Margaret's Tower, Tallinn

Finland

France

Germany

Greece

  • Acropolis, Athens
  • Traditional village, Santorini

Hungary

  • Széchenyi Bath

Ireland

  • Glendalough monastery, County Wicklow
  • Rock of Cashel, County Tipperary
  • Gallarus Oratory, County Kerry

Italy

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Latvia

  • Freedom Monument, Riga

Lithuania

  • Vilnius University campus, Vilnius

Luxembourg

  • Adolphe Bridge, Luxembourg City

Malta

  • Mnajdra temple

Netherlands

Poland

  • Artus Court, Gdańsk
  • Monument to Fallen Shipyard Workers, Gdańsk

Portugal

Romania

Slovakia

Slovenia

  • Prešeren Square with Tromostovje in Ljubljana

Spain

Sweden

United Kingdom

Other

  • Ariane 5
  • Pride of Dover ferry
  • An airport
  • A Ferris wheel
  • A North Sea oil platform
  • TGV train
  • Calypso (Jacques Cousteau's ship)

See also

  • Madurodam — Model village in Netherlands containing miniature famous Dutch landmarks
  • Bekonscot — typical English village in miniature
  • Huis ten Bosch — Japanese theme park modelled on the cities and landscape of the Low Countries
  • Mini-Israel —

External links

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Tips & Hints
Arrange By:
Gabi Bulumac
27 December 2015
Reality it's better ????
Cédric Henneghien
5 September 2015
MINI-EUROPE est le seul parc où, en quelques heures, vous voyagez à travers l'Europe.
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Location
Map
Address

Voetballaan 1, 1020 City of Brussels, Belgium

Get directions
Open hours
Mon-Sun 9:30 AM–6:00 PM
References

Mini-Europe (Mini-Europa) on Foursquare

Mini-Europe on Facebook

Hotels nearby

See all hotels See all
Rocco Forte Hotel Amigo

starting $876

Aris Grand Place Hotel

starting $78

Hotel Mozart

starting $348

Résidence Le Quinze Grand Place Brussels

starting $186

Apartments Residence Grand Place

starting $174

City Center Apartments Brasseurs

starting $291

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