Facts About Mini-Europe, Brussels : a Miniature Representation of the Highlights of Europe
Mini-Europe is located in Bruparck at the foot of the Atomium in Brussels and shows visitors the most beautiful buildings and attractions in Europe. It has been built as a miniature town according to the Model of Madurodam in the Netherlands. The miniature buildings are constructed at a scale of 1:25 and visitors can discover the beauty of Europe during a walk of 2 hours in this beautiful park.
Mini- Europe opened his doors in 1989 and was established by the Wallibi group of Eddy Meeus. The creation of Mini-Europe was a challenge because it is different than their amusement park Wallibi where the same visitors visit frequently amusement parks. It is different for Mini-Europe; it is an attraction which you don’t visit every year.
The creation of Mini-Europe in Brussels was a project in 5 phases:
1.The selection of the scale models
Since 1987, art historians selected a few hundred buildings of the European Union based on their art historical value, symbol of a typical European characteristic , the beauty of the building and the possibility to realize at a scale of 1:25.
2. Searching to plans and pictures
Detailed plans and thousands of pictures were necessary to create the scale-models of the buildings. For some important buildings didn’t exist plans anymore, for example some buildings in Florence, the Capitol in Rome, the Sacre Coeur of Paris etc. The expenses for this phase was already 200.000 Euro.
3. The realization of the scale models
More than 50 ateliers of 9 member states of the Europe Union were contacted to realize the scale models. These were created with a new technique which guaranteed a superb quality. The different parts or units were cut from different materials ( for example wood, cartoon etc.) and merged on a Master plate. It was a process with high precision and required much time to realize such superb quality. Twenty four thousand hours were necessary to realize of the scale model of the Santiago de Compostela.
4.The painting of the scale models
The scale models were painted in the ateliers of Mini-Europe to guarantee consistency of style. The original color is as good as possible approached without taking into account the pollution which causes a change in color of the original buildings.
The animations are designed especially for Mini-Europe. These work approximately 2.900 hours in one year and in all weather circumstances (rain, wind, snow etc.). Every animation is considered as an industrial prototype.
Nowadays, Mini-Europe has more than 350 scale models of monuments from more than 80 European cities. Regularly, there are new scale models added. Mini-Europe in the Bruparck of Brussels can be considered as a top attraction in Brussels and attracts approximately 300.000 visitors each year from all continents of the world.
*List of Scale models
- Melk Abbey
- Grand Place / City Hall, Brussels
-The Belfry, Bruges
-Town Hall, Leuven
-Castle of Vêves, Celles
- Citadel and Notre-Dame Church, Dinant
- Berlaymont building, Brussels
-Graslei street and the Rabot, Ghent
-Alden Biesen Castle, Rijkhoven
-Main square of Antwerp (City Hall, Brabo statue, guild houses)
- Curtius House, Liège
-Rila Monastery, Rila Mountain, part of UNESCO World Heritage
-Ancient Greek theatre, Kourion
-Viking ring fort
-Nyhavn waterfront, Copenhagen
-Børsen (old stock exchange), Copenhagen
-Great Coastal Gate and Fat Margaret's Tower, Tallinn
-St. Olaf's Castle, Savonlinna
-Eiffel Tower, Paris
-Arc de Triomphe, Paris
-Basilica of the Sacré Cœur, Paris
-Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris
-Notre Dame du Haut, Ronchamp
-Clos Vougeot, near Dijon
-Château de Chenonceau, Loire Valley
-Royal Saltworks, Arc-et-Senans
-Holstentor, Burgtor and Salzspeicher, Lübeck
-Brandenburg Gate and Berlin Wall, Berlin
-Bonngasse (street) with Beethoven's birth house, Bonn
-Wies Pilgrimage Church
-Porta Nigra, Trier
-Traditional village, Santorini
-Glendalough monastery, County Wicklow
-Rock of Cashel, County Tipperary
-Gallarus Oratory, County Kerry
-Piazza dei Miracoli (Leaning Tower, Duomo, Baptistry), Pisa
-Doge's Palace and St Mark's Campanile, Venice
-Palazzo Pubblico, Siena
-Villa Capra (La Rotonda), Vicenza
-Trulli of Alberobello
-Freedom Monument, Riga
-Vilnius University campus, Vilnius
-Adolphe Bridge, Luxembourg City
-Mint Tower and Montelbaan Tower, Amsterdam
-Town Hall, Maastricht
-Hoensbroek Castle, Hoensbroek
-Church and houses, Ootmarsum
-Abbey and Kloveniersdoelen, Middelburg
-Museum village of Orvelte
-Weigh House and Tax Tower, Alkmaar
-Hoofdtoren and Oude Doelenkade street, Hoorn
-Town Hall, Veere
-Artus Court, Gda?sk
-Monument to Fallen Shipyard Workers, Gda?sk
-Belém Tower, Lisbon
-Castle of Guimarães
-Traditional village of the Algarve
-Mogo?oaia Palace, near Bucharest
-The Blue Church in Bratislava
-Prešeren Square with Tromostovje in Ljubljana
-Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela
-Plaza de Toros, Seville
-Christopher Columbus monument, Barcelona
-Landscape with windmills, La Mancha
-City Hall, Stockholm
-Houses of Parliament / Big Ben, London
-Stratford-upon-Avon (Shakespeare's birth house, Anne Hathaway's cottage, etc.)
-Longleat House, Wiltshire
-Royal Crescent and Circus, Bath
-Arlington Row, Bibury
-Pride of Dover ferry
-A Ferris wheel
-A North Sea oil platform
-Calypso (Jacques Cousteau's ship)
A visit to Mini-Europe may help travelers to choose a vacation destination in Europe. A walk of 2 hours in this beautiful park is perfect to discover the beauties of Europe and the guide you get when you buy your ticket informs you the necessary information of the different buildings and attractions which you meet during your walk.
This video will guide you in this beautiful park and shows the top attractions. You may never forget to visit masterpieces as the Big Ben of London, the leaning tower of Pisa, the Mount Vesuvius, the TGV of Paris, the cathedral of Santiago della Compostella, the Trulli of Alberobello, the Eiffel Tower and Arc de Triomphe in Paris etc.
A visit to Mini-Europe can best be combined with a visit to the Atomium. If you go to the top of this beautiful building of Brussels, you can see a panoramic view of Mini Europe. If the weather is good; it is even possible to see the cathedral of Antwerp and many other important buildings of Belgium which are located more than hundred kilometers from the Atomium.
Mini-Europe in Brussels is the perfect place to discover all the beautiful buildings of Europe and may give you inspiration for traveling in this beautiful continent.