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Weekend in Brussels -- Suggestions wanted

Weekend in Brussels -- Suggestions wanted

Aug 31st, 1999, 12:54 PM
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Weekend in Brussels -- Suggestions wanted

Reposting a prior question in hopes it will attact a few answers. Thanks --

We are thinking about a November weekend in Brussels. Sabena has a Eurostay plan which includes airfare and hotel for two nights at the Brussels Hilton.
Has anyone had any experiences with this package? this hotel?

What day tour trips would be possible from Brussels?

Aug 31st, 1999, 01:49 PM
wes fowler
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By all means visit Brugges, less than an hour from Brussels by train. It's an extraordinary small city that's easily walkable and has changed little since the 16th century. You can see most of the major sights in Brugges within a day's time and enjoy superb meals in any of a number of its fine restaurants. Do, by all means, see Michelangelo's charming Madonna and Child in the Church of Our Lady (Onze-Lieve-Vrouwekerk). If the weather permits, visit the Beguinage, one of the most peaceful, restful spots in Europe. See handmade lace being made at the Lace Centre, visit the Folklore Museum and sample a beeer at the Zwarte Kat, an old inn in the interconnected houses that make up the museum.

Email me if you'd like suggestions for dining either in Brugges or Brussels.
Aug 31st, 1999, 01:52 PM
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My husband and I spent a long weekend in Brussells in January of 1998--flew out on a Friday evening and I returned on Wednesday morning. We stayed at the Radisson which was lovely and close to the Gran Place (actually about four blocks). Saturday we took a bus tour of the city arranged by the concierge of our hotel -- that gave us a good overview of the city and helped us out with our directions. Brussells is easy to get around in -- and, yes, you can take a day trip to Brugges which is what we did by train on Sunday. There are two train stations which are both accessible from the center of town which is where most of the hotels are. Plan to pub hop, eat frittes -- the beer is just fantastic. We treated ourselves to two elegant meals -- one at the Sea Grill which is located in the Radisson and known as the top seafood restaurant in the city. The food was absolutely outstanding! The other was Cynet (The Swan) on Gran Place. Have a wonderful trip.

Below is an interesting site with trip reports to Belgium:
Sep 2nd, 1999, 05:03 AM
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Good suggestions but you might also want to try Leuven, an old university town about 20 minutes from Brussels by train. A very relaxed atmosphere and beautiful architecture. You don't need to go to swanky restaurants in Brussels to get superb meals - try the ordinary restaurants off the tourist trail - especially for steak frites! A secret tip - try the area around Place Jourdan for eating, drinking and hanging out! Local prices, great selection of restaurants and bars and a friendly atmosphere with a mixture of local and English speaking expats.

Another idea is just to walk around some of the inner suburbs like Etterbeek or Ixelles looking at the houses. Some of the architecture and features you can see on the old buildings are fascinating - and there is a bar on every corner where you can get a good Belgian coffee - in my view, the best in the world!

I've lived in Brussels for about 20 years so if I can be of any further help...
Sep 2nd, 1999, 03:42 PM
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I too stayed at the Radisson SAS hotel in Brussels. It was a very nice hotel and part of the original wall of Brussels is incorporated in it's atrium. Unfortunately, I didn't have dinner there like the previous post did. I enjoyed picking out a restaurant in the Ilot Sacre though and had a great meal at Aux Armes de Bruxelles. I enjoyed meandering through Brussels. Of course visit the Grand Place, Mannekin Pis, Parc du Cinquantennaire, and a chocolatier (buy some pralines). I liked Brussels very much! Have a great time!
Sep 2nd, 1999, 10:42 PM
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I stayed in the Brussels Hilton this past year and found it to be quite nice. I wonder if they're including their wonderful buffet breakfast in your package. When I first checked in there, I discovered that the front desk person spoke perfect English--and zero French or Dutch! Bringing the Cadogan Guide to Brussels made all the difference to me. The book also has plenty of information about Ghent, Antwerp and Brugges. All of these cities are worth seeing. Have fun...and for a cheap treat go to the waffle stand right next to the McDonald's near the Hilton!
Sep 5th, 1999, 05:58 AM
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Ditto on Brugge, one of the best preserved and most charming towns in all of Europe. Also, when in Brussels, ask to see some of the great art nouveau buildings. The area has some of the finest examples, anywhere.
Sep 5th, 1999, 05:08 PM
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After spending two weeks in Belgium last September with my partner and my dad, my dad went back Valentine's Day weekend, 1999 on one of those Sabena weekend trips. He liked the hotel very much. His only complaint *and he is in his early 60's* was that it was VERY whirlwind. I find the first day in Europe is usually a washout for me, catching up on my sleep. You don't have that luxury with one of those Sabena trips.

I would get out of Brussels and visit Bruges. It was one of my most favorite places in Belgium. Gent is along the way and you may consider wandering around there. The concierge at the hotel can recommend some tours if you want someone else to show you around. Otherwise, get on the website for the railroad *www.b-rail.be* and check the times.

Have fun!!!

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