Who can visit?
For groups of at least 20 people, our visits service organises visits in any of the 24 official languages of the EU. The visits are suitable for:
- school groups over the age of 15
We cannot arrange visits for individuals or groups fewer than 20 people. However, we open our doors to the public each year in May during the Open Day of the European institutions.
What does the visit consist of?
Information sessions can be organised on most working days, between 9 and 11 am or between 1.30 and 4 pm. There are no information sessions during the month of August.
We only offer one type of visit - information sessions. They usually last between 1 and 2 hours and consist of:
- a talk given by an official from the General Secretariat of the Council or the European External Action Service
- a question and answer session
The talk may be either a general introduction to the European Council and the Council or a presentation on a more specific topic. Seminars can also be held on request.
How to book a visit
Information sessions should be reserved at least 3 months in advance. Once we receive your request, we will contact you to confirm your visit.
The request should be made by:
- the group leader
- a representative of the education establishment or student body who must also accompany the group during the visit
School groups must be accompanied by at least one adult for every 10 pupils.
Please note that the visits service reserves the right to put two compatible groups together for organisational purposes or to cancel a scheduled visit that does not meet the procedural requirements.
In exceptional circumstances, resulting from political developments or last-minute Council meetings, the visits service may cancel visits that have already been arranged, even at short notice.
The Council buildings are accessible to people with reduced mobility.
Tel: +32 22812140
Where do the visits take place?
Justus Lipsius building
Rue de la Loi/Wetstraat 175
Rue de la Loi/Wetstraat 145
Info Point Europa
Rue Archimède/Archimedesstraat 1
Information sessions take place in one of the Council buildings in Brussels:
- the Justus Lipsius building
- the Lex building
- Info Point Europa
Please note that it is not possible to tour the Europa building during the visits.
Coaches carrying visitors can stop in front of the main entrance of the Justus Lipsius building to drop them off and pick them up. There are train and metro stations and a bus stop in the immediate vicinity.
Info Point Europa
The Council and the European Commission have a joint information and documentation centre which has an information desk and offers free publications. The centre Info Point Europa is near the Council's headquarters and is open Monday to Friday from 9 am to 5 pm.
We strive to offer highest standards of service.
In case you consider that in your contacts/correspondence with GSC services you have been subject to maladministration, you are advised that you have the right to introduce a complaint to the European Ombudsman. However, before the Ombudsman can accept a complaint from you, it is necessary that you first raise your concerns with a service of the Council of the European Union that dealt with your initial request.
We will endeavour to remedy the cause of your dissatisfaction, to the degree this is possible and as appropriate.
How to visit the other EU institutions?
The European Commission visitors' centre welcomes visitor groups (minimum 15) for presentations and discussion about its role as the political executive of the European Union. Visits should be booked at least 10 weeks in advance and can be tailored to suit the knowledge and the interests of groups.
The European Parliament is the heart of democracy in the European Union. Visit for free and find out about how the European Parliament works, how it impacts you and how we came to the Europe of today. See the European Parliament visiting website for information.
European Committee of the Regions
The European Committee of the Regions offers engaging presentations to visitor groups (minimum 15 persons, older than 14 years) on the role of Europe's regions and cities in shaping European Union legislation. Visits should be booked at least 8 weeks in advance.
European Economic and Social Committee
Visit the house of organised civil society for an interactive talk. Discover its three groups - employers, workers and various interests (such as professional, community and youth organisations, women's groups, consumers, environmental campaigners) - and how their rights are heard in the European Union.