Brusels - In what it described as a world first, the city of Brussels has launched a hi-tech system that enables tourists or anyone else with a smartphone to scan tags for information at 600 sites.

Developed by a Belgian firm, the system called “TagTagCity” enables visitors to scan a code on a tag. These tags appear on the walls and windows of museums, monuments, restaurants and shops.

For those without smartphones, small devices can be purchased that enable a user to gather information and download this on to a computer.

“Discovering Brussels is acquiring a whole new dimension,” said Christos Doulkeridis, the tourism minister of the city that hosts the European Union and Nato and sees itself as the heart of Europe.

Brussels last year saw 3.1 million visitors, an 8 percent increase on 2010, according to tourist office VisitBrussels. – Sapa-AFP