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driving tips from The Hague to Paris!! pls!

driving tips from The Hague to Paris!! pls!

Mar 2nd, 2011, 03:13 AM
  #1  
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driving tips from The Hague to Paris!! pls!

Hi we are driving from Den Haag, Netherlands to Paris this weekend. We are leaving friday morning driving south thru Belgium and want to stop somewhere for the afternoon and arrive in Paris in the evening. We are then spending the weekend in Paris, staying in the Latin Quarter, we have all been to Paris before, but we didn't really get a great taste of this area. We will visit the Eiffel tower (again) because our son loves it, but then we just want to visit cafes, and we really want to see some live music! I really wanted to go to Moulin Rouge, but I hear it's pretty awful, also I am a dancer so I may be even more critical. Any amazing dance/performance shows and/or music would be greatly appreciated!
Gent and Antwerp are exactly on our route, but since we have never been to Belgium before, we thought to go to Brussels or Brugge. Both Brussels and Brugge are a little off our direct path, but we thought we should stop in each town, one on the way to Paris and one on the way home. Any thoughts of which towns to stop in Belgium, we need to pick two, one for friday afternoon and one for monday afternoon. We will likely stop for lunch and beer tasting, and walk around to get a little taste of the town.
We are two couples, one in early 20s, one in early 30s and an 11 yr old.
Thanks so much!!
Any advice is greatly appreciated!
Tamarajuel is offline  
Mar 2nd, 2011, 03:32 AM
  #2  
 
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If your choice is Brugge and Brussels then I would do Brugge on Friday and Brussels on Monday - Friday evening rush hour for Brussels could be a nightmare.
Maybe instead of Brussels you would enjoy Antwerp, although that is perhaps too close to Den Haag.
Or what about Lille, just over the French border?

Go easy on the beer tasting - at least for the driver - Belgian beer is strong and it doesn't take much to be over the limit!
hetismij is offline  
Mar 2nd, 2011, 04:23 AM
  #3  
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Yes, just one beer tasting for the driver! I have read that Gent is similar to Brugge, but less touristy? Any thoughts?
I have not heard anything about Lille? I will look it up!

Thanks so much!
Tamarajuel is offline  
Mar 2nd, 2011, 07:15 AM
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Lille sounds like a charming little town, (I've been researching France.) I loved Brussels. If you're not into museums it won't matter if you do Brussels on Monday but you'll miss the museums and imo, that would be a shame.
LSky is offline  
Mar 2nd, 2011, 07:45 AM
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"Lille sounds like a charming little town, "

What on earth gave you that impression?

Lille, in the centre, in a good, dry, light might pass for almost pleasant. It does have a reasonable slug of museums and pleasantish places to sit on the one day a year it's not raining (OK: that bit's unfair. But Lille's squarely in the drizzle belt). And it's an object lesson to parts of Northern Britain and the US in how to handle de-industrialisation

But it's neither charming nor little, except by the standards of Greater Moscow. The Lille-Roubaix-Tourcoing conurbation is less of a horrid wen than it was when its mining industries worked and its inhabitants had jobs. But it's no Bruges.

In fact, it's not even a Glasgow, IMHO. It's also an absolute bitch to navigate yourself to almost anywhere (Mrs F and I have twice come close to divorce trying this) in the conurbation from its motorway system.

To make things trickier still, the Belgians helpfully insist on calling Lille Rijssel on many of their motorway signs. Some signs accept this can confuse the unwary, so provide both names.Some don't
flanneruk is offline  
Mar 3rd, 2011, 02:47 AM
  #6  
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okay thanks all! i think we are going to stop in Gent on the way to Paris on friday, then Brugge on Monday! Does Gent seem like a place where you could spend a few hours? I am assuming yes! We want to miss rush hour traffic in Paris and arrive around 7 pm friday night.
Any tips on good cafes, venues for music in the latin quarter?

thanks again for the tips!
Tamarajuel is offline  
Mar 3rd, 2011, 03:51 AM
  #7  
 
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Beware that in Belgium the school holidays start this weekend, and there will be a mass exodus in the direction of the Alps. The southern part of The Netherlands also start their holiday.
If you leave Den Haag on Friday morning, Gent would be a good place to stop for lunch. But honestly, I would continue on to Paris. From 4 or 5 pm the roads are going to be clogged with traffic. I would want to be in Paris before 5 pm, or otherwise late in the evening.
Tulips is offline  
Mar 3rd, 2011, 07:09 AM
  #8  
 
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Oh, and there's a national strike in Belgium on Friday, but I don't know how that will affect traffic; if bus and train join the strike, it might be even more busy on the roads.
Tulips is offline  
Mar 3rd, 2011, 09:39 AM
  #9  
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wow, thanks for the info on the traffic!

We will head out early, stop in Gent and be on our way to Paris!
Tamarajuel is offline  
Mar 3rd, 2011, 10:13 AM
  #10  
 
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Have a good trip! I just heard that in Belgium the busses will be on strike, but probably not the trains.
Tulips is offline  
Mar 3rd, 2011, 10:30 PM
  #11  
 
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flanneruk, I had no idea that Belgium had a Lille also. Have you been to the one in France?
LSky is offline  

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