Brussels

Jan 5th, 2013, 02:38 PM
  #1  
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Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 42
Brussels

Need advice on how many nights to spend in Brussels where we are staying and should we do trips to Ghent, Bruges and should we do a eurrail pass or rent a car? We are also travelling to Paris and Vienna, Thank you,appreciate any information.
marronn is offline  
Jan 5th, 2013, 02:50 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
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For travel in Belgium, I would stick to rail travel. It's easy and trains are frequent. Many people are not overwhelmed by Brussels, and a stay in a town with more complete historic center might be in order. We stayed in Ghent, within walking distance of all the major sights. You might want to take a look at my trip report, even if a little old; click on my name to find it.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/mksfca/...60216715/show/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/mksfca/...60079007/show/
Michael is offline  
Jan 5th, 2013, 02:54 PM
  #3  
 
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I like Brussels...two days would cover the attraction and museums.
Bruges is only an hour by train, Ghent even less.
Many posters prefer staying in Bruges...small, charming, very Flemish, often very crowded.
danon is offline  
Jan 5th, 2013, 03:05 PM
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You don't really need a car as the Belgian rail network is excellent for the locations you mention. I would probably get point-to-point tickets myself if you have a firm plan before you go, and because the distances are not huge the tickets will be cheap, but since I don't know the details of your journeys, here is the Belgian rail website so you can check for the tickets or passes that may best suit your situation: http://www.belgianrail.be/en/travel-...s/tickets.aspx . Ghent, Bruges, Antwerp and Brussels are the best locations to visit although if you want to range wider, Ieper (Ypres) in Flanders and Dinant in Wallonia are also interesting and picturesque. It depends on your interests as to how you divide your time amongst the cities, but most people allot a shorter amount of time to Brussels and a longer amount to the other three. I know Brussels quite well and can probably give you some tips for that city. How do you like to sightsee? What are your interests? How long is your whole trip and how much time are you devoting to the other destinations? and what is set in stone already?

Lavandula
lavandula is offline  
Jan 5th, 2013, 03:18 PM
  #5  
 
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You've given such scant information it's hard to help. How long is this trip in total? How many days in Belgium/Paris/Vienna? Any stops along the way, other than the ones you're contemplating in Belgium? What time of year is the trip?

Unlike many folks, I like Brussels a lot, and would probably spend at least 3 days there. Bruges is delightful, but has become such a crowded tourist destination I have no desire to go back. Ghent and Antwerp are great. Paris deserves a week IMO. And I don't like Vienna at all. Everyone has different tastes and interests, and you haven't given us any info on yours.

Renting a car in Country A and dropping it off in Country B or C incurs a whopping extra fee. Trains, assuming you are just heading to cities and not intending to meander around countryside areas, are the way to go. It's very unlikely a rail pass will be of much use or any savings, especially if you take advantage of online ticket purchases in advance.
StCirq is offline  
Jan 5th, 2013, 09:30 PM
  #6  
 
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I very much preferred Bruges and Ghent to Brussels. Ghent would make a good base to visit the other two. I did 3 nights each in Bruges and Brussels, and 2 nights each in Ghent and Antwerp.
joannyc is offline  
Jan 6th, 2013, 12:32 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
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I'm in agreement with other posters. Brussels other than the Grend Place

and a few museums holds little interest for me.2 days at the most on the other hand Antwerp can take a week . We have made several trips to Iepe and surrounding area but we are interested in WWI. though the little town is more than that . Brugges is okay for a day or 2 but you will be fighting crowds most of the tiem

me.We have always driven but that is a personal preference . The rain system is excellent,
Avalon2 is offline  
Jan 6th, 2013, 09:50 AM
  #8  
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Thank you for all the helpful info. Right now we have 3-4 nights Brussels and 4 nights Amsterdam after the Paris marathon.We have a choice to do this or Vienna and Budapest instead but it looks costly to get from Paris to Vienna and Budapest and back to Paris for flight home any imput or thoughts, Thank you.I have been before to all of them except Budapest so have an idea but been a long time!
marronn is offline  
Jan 6th, 2013, 01:24 PM
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3-4 nights Brussels is quite good - you can see a lot in Brussels or take daytrips out from there very easily. Make sure you see the Horta Museum and the Museum of Musical Instruments, because they are both in the Art Nouveau style - an important architectural style in Brussels.

Lavandula
lavandula is offline  
Jan 6th, 2013, 01:58 PM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
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Stayed 3 night in Brussels and did day trip to Brugge by train.Same train stopped at Ghent which is closer to Brussels. Staying in one place saved us packing up and checking in multiple times.Brugge was "okay" for me- guess by then I had seen other medievil towns across Europe so maybe I was jaded and not enjoying the crowds which are bused and trained in.
snowgirls is offline  
Jan 7th, 2013, 07:43 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
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If it were me, I would be staying in Ghent and take day trips into Brussels and Brugge.
Brussels can be a bit agressive, and unless there's particular things you want to do at night, Ghent could be a better choice .. lots of terrific restos and bars, also clubs... plus it's really safe and not overrun with tourists.
If you're interested in this sort of thing, Brussels has a large flea market every day 8-1pm every day at the Jeu de Balle Square, it;s walking distance from the Midi/Zuid train station.
Ghent has a wonderful Farmers market on Fridays at the Vrijdag Square, and also just around the corner is a Flea at St Jacobs
on Fri sat & Sun!
Also the train system is fantastic and the fares are discounted on the weekends! Very easy to get around. Brugge is only 25-30 minutes from Ghent- lots of tourists!
Let me know if you need more info!
beergirl is offline  
Jan 7th, 2013, 07:59 AM
  #12  
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THESE ARE REALLY HELPFUL AND FULL OF GREAT TIOPS, THANK YOU!
marronn is offline  

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