On July 21st, Belgium celebrates every year its National Day,which is one of twelve public holidays in Belgium. The festival’s formal establishment dates to a law of 27 May 1890 and commemorates an event on 21 July 1831 in which Leopold of Saxe-Cobourg swore allegiance to the new Belgian constitution, thus becoming the first King of the Belgians. The king’s vow marked the start of the independent state of Belgium under a constitutional monarchy and parliament.
The day typically starts with a Catholic “Te Deum” service in the Cathedral of Brussels attended by dignitaries. In the afternoon, the Belgian Army and police are reviewed by the King, and the parade pasts the Royal Palace and around the Parc de Bruxelles. There is a flypast by the airforce. The military, civil defense and emergency services and other government departments typically have stalls in the nearby Place Poelart, Rue de la Régence, Place Royale and surroundings which explain their roles to the public.
Many notable buildings in Brussels that are usually closed are also open to the public on National Day. A variety of entertainment is presented in several venues around the city, particularly in the city center. In the evening, a large fireworks display occurs in the Parc de Bruxelles.
Also, smaller events occur in towns and cities across Belgium and in Belgian expats communities abroad