Charleroi is a city located in the Hainaut province in the French speaking part of Belgium, on the river Sambre. It is the fifth largest city in the country and, in recent years, has gained something of a reputation as being economically deprived following the decline of the mining industry. This is an image which Charleroi is determined to fight back against, however, by establishing itself as a transport and cultural hub. The former is based upon the presence of Brussels South Charleroi Airport which handles many low cost carriers from around Europe. Although the airport is often used as a base from which to explore wider Belgium, Brussels and France, the city of Charleroi has much to offer the casual visitor, whilst avoiding the crowds and steep prices associated with more celebrated tourist spots.