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Less time in Bruges for more time in Paris?

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Apr 18th, 2013, 08:06 PM
  #1
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Less time in Bruges for more time in Paris?

Hi all -- I have booked my flight and made room reservations in both Bruges and Paris for September. I'm finding that I may need another night in Paris in order to see and experience everything on my list. For those of you who have been to Bruges in recent years, maybe you can weigh in. Is 3 nights too many or about right? It will be my first stop, and I was hoping to relax, get over jet lag, and perhaps even bicycle along a canal a bit.

Due to plans after Paris, I don't have the option of adding a day at the end. Right now I have 4 nights in Paris.
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Apr 18th, 2013, 08:33 PM
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Ummm... yes. I would almost always vote for an extra day in Paris because there's so much to do. But then again, it's all subjective. Do you have a list of things that you want to see in Bruges? If it's just to relax and maybe take a bike ride, then I'd say drop a night. You can relax in Paris, too.
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Apr 18th, 2013, 09:39 PM
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We have visited both over the years and are thinking of a similar itinerary next year. We had 3 full days in Bruges and could have spent one more but compared to Paris there is not as much to see. Bruges would be great for a bike ride along the canals and it is lovely to stroll. If you cut to two nights you'll only have a day or maybe a day and a 1/2 in Bruges. You would have time for that bike ride, some chocolate and a beer!

May I ask where you are staying in both cities?
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Apr 18th, 2013, 09:45 PM
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I will probably visit a museum or two in Bruges, take a boat ride, bicycle (maybe). In Paris, there are 5 art museums on my must-visit list, plus the Polish Library (for Chopin exhibit), Montmartre, Pere Lachase cemetery, and visiting several of Chopin's residences (they're spread out). And I haven't even thought about shopping and enjoying cafes.

The one drawback to changing is the b & b I booked in Bruges has a 3 night minimum and they've received only 5 star reviews on Trip Advisor. But I'm thinking of changing just to give myself more time to get around to all these locations in Paris. It's a tough call.
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Apr 18th, 2013, 09:51 PM
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I've spent a week in Bruges relaxing, biking, beach, etc. but not at the expense of time in Paris. I would easily spend only two nights in Bruges and add one to Paris, That extra day in Paris, I would visit Versailles.

There are lots of places to bike. Bruges doesn't have a monopoly on that. As a matter of fact, I didn't find it much fun there. I'd probably never go back to Bruges, but sure as heck would go back to Paris - over and over.
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Apr 18th, 2013, 10:10 PM
  #6
kja
 
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Do 3 nights in Bruges mean 2 or 3 or 4 days? I think 2 days would be lovely, especially (as you mention) because you'll be recovering from jet lag. If it means 3 days, well... I would probably be antsy to move on to Paris, but I can't speak for you!

One thing to consider is the likelihood of returning. Paris is not only a place to which many travelers return, but also a "gateway" city, in the sense that many flights to other parts of Europe are routed through it, so there's a very good chance that you can easily visit it again on a future trip. Bruges is not a gateway in that sense, and so is less likely to be on a future itinerary. If you think it has enough to keep you busy until the morning after your 3rd night, it could make sense to stay there.

Both are wonderful - enjoy!
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Apr 18th, 2013, 10:13 PM
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Sassafrass -- Thank you so much! I was just now looking at a different hotel in Bruges that doesn't have a minimum.
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Apr 18th, 2013, 10:16 PM
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Thank you, kja. 3 nights would mean two full days in Bruges. But with 4 nights in Paris, that's leaving me with 3 full days there, with MANY more must-see places on my list.
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Apr 18th, 2013, 10:28 PM
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YES...Bruges is small...a day is more than enough unless you wish to visit every church and building in it.
Paris is a great city with so much more to see and experience.
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Apr 18th, 2013, 10:46 PM
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Thank you, Danon. I'm realizing the wisdom in giving myself more time there.
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Apr 19th, 2013, 04:34 AM
  #11
 
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I too would opt for more time in Paris. So many unique things to see and do. One day in Bruges was enough for me- had seen enough old towns/churches/squares at that point in my 3 week bike trip. Your travel "likes" may be different from mine.
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Apr 19th, 2013, 07:21 AM
  #12
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Thank you, Snowgirls. It dawned on me from prior experience with towns the size of Bruges, two nights is typically enough. It looks lovely, and if I had the time I would relax there for 3 nights. My b & b just wrote saying they usually ask for 3, but if I want to cancel one night, it is fine. Perfect.
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Apr 19th, 2013, 08:30 AM
  #13
 
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That's a tough question. We have been to Paris many times and to Bruges once. Two years ago we spent three nights in Bruges, seven nights in Paris and then three nights in Brussels. Three nights in Bruges was the perfect amount of time. One of our favorite B&Bs in the world is Cote Canal in Bruges. However, if you have never been to Paris, I would stay all seven nights in Paris. If this is not your first trip to Paris, I would recommend three nights in Bruges and four in Paris.
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Apr 19th, 2013, 08:40 AM
  #14
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bumper - I stayed 3 nights in Paris in '05. I've been to Orsay, Rodin, Louvre, St. Chapelle and did the boat cruise. This trip I am planning to visit Marmottan, l"Orangerie, Rodin, Orsay, Cluny, Polish Lib, Ile St. Louis, Montmartre, Pere Lachase, Chopin apartments in New Athens area, Place Vendome, Eiffel area and Hemingway Walk in the Latin Quarter. I could possibly squeeze all this into 3 full days there, with very little "relaxing at a cafe" time or shopping time (which may be a good thing). I appreciate your assessment, and will consider your recommendation.
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Apr 19th, 2013, 03:14 PM
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bumper -- I should add that I saw Cote Canal on Trip Advisor. I booked Huis Kroning, which is rated #1 on TA, and is also somewhat less expensive than CC (thought it looks fabulous).
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Apr 19th, 2013, 05:24 PM
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bookmarking, as we're looking into planning a similar itinerary this summer-thanks!
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Apr 20th, 2013, 12:26 PM
  #17
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I have added a night to Paris. Now, since Bumper mentioned Cote Canal Bed & Breakfast, I've taken a closer look at it. I think the location is better and the canal location looks lovely. Huis Koning also looks quite nice though.
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