The most popular sport in Belgium is association football (soccer in 9 countries) and both the Belgian domestic league and the national team are followed by many fans.
Cycling is extremely popular as well but these races can’t take place in a stadium.
While some of the stadiums in Belgium are nice, many of them are outdated compared to stadiums in other parts of Europe.
The main problem is acquiring building permits, a process that can take a very long time because of regulations and the fact that Belgium is heavily urbanized.
Club Bruges is planning to build a new stadium and Royal Antwerp is in the process of transforming its stadium into a top-notch venue.
In this article, you’ll discover a list of the biggest Belgian stadiums.
1. King Baudouin Stadium
- Location: Brussels
- Capacity: 50,093
The King Baudouin Stadium is the name of the national stadium of Belgium. It’s located in the Heyzel district in the northwestern part of the Belgian capital of Brussels. The Heysel stadium was also the former name of this huge stadium which features an athletics track around the playing field.
The stadium was one of the main attractions of the 1935 International Exposition, an event that took place on the Heysel Plateau. The Heysel Stadium Disaster took place here in May 1985, a devastating event that resulted in more strict security measures in stadiums all across Europe. The stadium got its current look in preparation for the UEFA Euro 2000 tournament.
2. Jan Breydel Stadium
- Location: Bruges
- Capacity: 29,062
The Jan Breydel Stadium is the home ground of one of the most successful football clubs in Belgium, Club Bruges. It’s also used by the city’s smaller brother Cercle Bruges. It’s located in Sint-Andries, a suburb of the capital city of the West Flanders province of Belgium.
The stadium was named after a Flemish hero who instigated the Bruges Matins, an important event in Flemish history in the early 14th century that led to the Battle of the Golden Spurs. The stadium is also commonly referred to as the “Olympiastadion” or simply “Olympia.”
3. Stade Maurice Dufrasne (Sclessin)
- Location: Liège
- Capacity: 27,670
The Stade Maurice Dufrasne is commonly referred to as “Scelssin,” a reference to the suburb of Liège where it’s located. It’s the home of another popular football club in the Walloon part of Belgium called Standard Liège.
Standard is known for its passionate fans and this stadium in Belgium has extremely steep stands, something that enhances the atmosphere in this arena. Even the upper tiers of this stadium are very close to the playing field. It’s definitely one of the most exciting venues to watch a football game in Belgium.
4. Cegeka Arena
- Location: Genk
- Capacity: 23,718
The Cegeka Arena is the current name of the home stadium of the Belgian football club Racing Genk. It went by a couple of different names in the past, including the Fenix Stadium, the Cristal Arena, and the Luminus Arena.
Today, it’s named in reference to the IT company that bought the naming rights on a 10-year deal. The stadium features 2 tiers and is quite enjoyable to watch games. The capacity during international games is slightly less than for domestic games at 21,500 spectators.
5. Lotto Park
- Location: Anderlecht
- Capacity: 21,500
Lotto Park is the current name of the stadium that went by the name of “Constant Vanden Stock Stadium” for a long period of time. It’s the home of the most successful Belgian football club in history, R.S.C. Anderlecht from Brussels.
The stadium was established in 1917 and only featured one wooden stand at the time. It was located on the edge of a city park known as Astrid Park today. The stadium underwent a complete transformation between 1983 and 1991 and apart from some new seats, it pretty much looks the same as it did back then.
6. Ghelamco Arena
- Location: Ghent
- Capacity: 20,000
The Ghelamco Arena is one of the few relatively new stadiums that have been constructed in Belgium in the past decades. Listen to this, It was officially opened on July 17, 2013, and it marked the first newly-built stadium in Belgium since 1974. That’s why most stadiums in Belgium aren’t up-to-date.
It’s the home stadium of the Belgian football club K.A.A. Gent and it replaced the club’s former home called the Jules Ottnestadion. It was the first time they moved out of their former ground since 1920. As expected, this is a great modern football arena in Belgium.
7. AFAS Stadium (Achter de Kazerne)
- Location: Mechelen
- Capacity: 16,672
The AFAS Stadium is the official name of a football stadium in Mechelen. It’s commonly referred to as “Achter de Kazerne” which translates to “Behind the Army Barracks.” It’s the home of KV Mechelen, another popular club in Belgium with a very loyal following.
The stadium was completely outdated in the second decade of the 21st century and a major renovation project was conducted between 2015 and 2020. Some of the stands feature a remarkably curving roof which gives the stadium a peculiar, yet interesting appearance.
- Location: Antwerp
- Capacity: 16,144
The Bosuilstadion is yet another historic stadium that has received a facelift in recent years. It’s the home of the oldest club in Belgium, Royal Antwerp, a football club founded by English students in 1880 that is commonly referred to as “The Great Old.”
Like most stadiums in Belgium, the modern stands of this stadium in Deurne, Antwerp, are in sheer contrast with the old stands of former times. Many important games have been played here, including the 1964 European Cup Winners’ Cup Final replay and the UEFA Euro 1972 semifinal between Belgium and West Germany (which Belgium lost).
9. Stade du Pays de Charleroi
- Location: Charleroi
- Capacity: 15,000
Stade du Pays de Charleroi is another major stadium in the Walloon region in Belgium and the home venue of the football club Sporting Charleroi. It’s perhaps one of the most remarkable stadiums on this list because it had a capacity of 30,000 when it was renovated for the UEFA Euro 2000 tournament.
The two stands behind the goal originally featured 2 tiers and the one opposite the main stand even had 3 tiers. The upper tiers were removed and today, the stadium only features half the seats it had 2 decades ago. Originally known as “Mambourg,” this stadium has a history that goes back to the year 1939.
- Location: Sint-Truiden
- Capacity: 14,600
Stayen is the name of the home ground of STVV, a Belgian football club from Sint-Truiden. The stadium’s name is a reference to the local word of the “Staden” district in the western part of the city. Between 1950 and 2009, the stadium’s name was written as “Staaien.”
The stadium originally opened in 1927 and 3 of the 4 stands were completely rebuilt in the 21st century. This stadium features a large commercial project that is part of the overall complex. The Hotel Stayen, the red block in the image below, features 20 rooms that overlook the stadium.