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where to base in belgium--belgium experts please

where to base in belgium--belgium experts please

Old Jan 2nd, 2007, 07:30 PM
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where to base in belgium--belgium experts please

We will be visiting belgium for 4.5 days (5 nights).
We will spend the last day or so in Brussels before heading back to London for flight out. For the other 3.5 days, would it be best to base in Bruges,and day trip to Antwerp? Or do 2 nights in each Antwerp and Bruges(or would that be too much traveling around?) Husband and I are both 27, first time to Belgium for both of us.
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Old Jan 2nd, 2007, 08:49 PM
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I am not an expert, but ten years ago we visited Belgium and Holland. We stayed at Brussels and made day trips to Antwerp, Bruges, Gent and Waterloo. The distances are not long, so I do not recommend to stay in more than one hotel.
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Old Jan 2nd, 2007, 11:19 PM
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I'm no expert but have been to Belgium several times. I would recommend staying one day in Antwerp to experience the nightlife. The hotel to stay in Antwerp is the Hilton, but there are plenty of good hotels in downtown Antwerp. If you want to minimize the one night stays, you can stay 2 days in Bruges and 2 days in Brussels. I would include a day stop in Ghent on your way to Brussels. We've been to Ghent three times and really enjoyed it. I wasn't impressed by Waterloo at all but then again I went there as a teenager some 25 years ago.
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Old Jan 3rd, 2007, 08:21 PM
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Thanks very much. Does anyone have any recommendations as far as budget hotels in bruges or antwetp?
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Old Jan 3rd, 2007, 10:20 PM
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We have used Hotel Malleburg on several occassions. Lovely little hotel. You should be able to Google it.
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Old Jan 3rd, 2007, 10:21 PM
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Oh , thats in Bruges by the way.
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Old Jan 4th, 2007, 06:54 AM
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Antwerp: Hotel Florida, just across the street from the railway station. Has its own parking building, if you are driving. Excellent included breakfast, free internet connections.
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Old Jan 4th, 2007, 07:14 AM
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Antwerp: I wouldn't stay in the Central Station area. The historical centre is far prettier and there's a lot more to do at night.
If you're on a budget, try Hotel Postiljon. It's on top location, around the corner from Grote Markt (Market Square). Website: http://www.hotelpostiljon.be/
There are several nice B&B's too. For instance Le Patio http://www.lepatio.be , De Granaetappel http://www.degranaetappel.be or Aan de Keizer http://www.aandekeizer.be
All three are on top location, very near to Grote Markt.
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Old Jan 4th, 2007, 11:33 PM
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Myriam, that sounds like great suggestions. Since you're our one & only Fodorite living in Antwerp, could you indulge us with a list of great restaurants in Antwerp or great places to go for nightlife Myriam? Antwerp is on our radar for a revisit next year.
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Old Jan 5th, 2007, 01:55 AM
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Two days in Bruges and two in Antwerp would give you an idea.There's isa regular train connection between all the major belgian cities.Greetings from Antwerp.Paul
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Old Jan 5th, 2007, 08:16 AM
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Dax, here you go!
Restaurants:
Dock's Café Belgian/French + seafood bar
De Kleine Zavel French, well known amongst Antwerpians
Het Fornuis - French (expensive)
Le Zoute Zoen - Belgian/French - owner was Lady Chef of the Year 2006
La Tavola Italiana genuine Italian (owner is Neapolitan)
Brasserie Appelmans - Belgian - young trendy atmosphere ; with in house Absinth Bar
Gin Fish - first class fish & seafood rest. (expensive - 1 Michelin *)
Het Gebaar Lunch Lounge international/fusion, nice location in the Botanical Garden
Ilha Formosa oriental/vegetarian
Varelli Greek mezze
All the above are in the historical centre.

Bizzie Lizzie Belgian/French
La Piazza - Italian
Both in the trendy south quarter (Het Zuid) 15/20 min. walk from Market Square. This is also where most of the nightlife takes place.

Het Pomphuis Pacific Rim cooking
La Riva Belgian/French
Both are located in magnificent buildings in the trendy north quarter (Het Eilandje) by taxi.

Nightlife: I'm sorry but it's been at least 20 years that I last went out in Antwerp. I'm afraid a lot has changed in the meantime.
Café d'Anvers, Bar Tabac, Stereo Sushi, Café Local are some well-known clubs.
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Old Jan 5th, 2007, 12:43 PM
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Myriam's list is great. Just to add Lux, close to la Riva; beautiful building. The bar seems to be popular too. And Pazzo, Oude Leeuwenrui; wonderful truffle dishes, great winelist.
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Old Jan 5th, 2007, 03:24 PM
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Thanks Myriam & Tulips! I also like Le Patio you recommended.
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Old Jan 30th, 2007, 08:07 PM
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I liked le patio but it was a big expensive. We are going to try Bed bath and brood/bread which might bit a little bit off the beaten path, but hopefully still close enough to walk to the sights. thanks!
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Old Jan 31st, 2007, 08:00 AM
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It's not too far off the beaten path at all. Several nice streets nearby, lots of restaurants, on Mechelsesteenweg for example (Le Pain Quotidien, Greens) and Kasteelpleinstraat, on the other side of the Britse Lei, is nice too. There's a vegetarian restaurant called De Broers van Julienne (www.debroersvanjulienne.be) that looks great, but I havent been yet.
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Old Jan 31st, 2007, 03:23 PM
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I would divide the stay between Brugges and Brussells. I would recommend the Hotel Ibis chain hotels in both cities - very reasonably priced, good locations etc. Most important - PARKING! Ghent is worth the day trip and Antwerp is on my next trip as is Ypres (near French border)for the WW1 trenches and poppy fields that have been preserved. Motorways connect all major towns. Unsure about railways. Recommend plenty of Belgian Beer - try kriek and cherry beer...
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Old Jan 31st, 2007, 05:26 PM
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We stayed at this very nice B&B just outside of Brugge this past spring. Cost at the time was 60 euros. Our hosts spoke excellent English. Although we had a car, the B&B was a couple of blocks from the train.

http://www.huttenest.be/en/index.html
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Old Feb 3rd, 2007, 06:56 AM
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try Hotel Cammerpoorte in Antwerp www.hotelcammerpoorte.be, centrally located in the historic city centre and really good prices. I have stayed there many times, it was always good !

I think Antwerp is nicer than Brussels, stay 2 nights in Bruges and 2 nights in Antwerp and Brussels just for a daytrip ! ( Also visit Gent please .

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Old Feb 3rd, 2007, 07:39 AM
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Friends of ours living in Brussels recommended that we stay either in Antwerp or Ghent over Bruges. We chose Ghent which is worth visiting. Rather than staying at a hotel, we stayed in a B&B right in the middle of the old town. More information is available in my trip report:

http://www.fodors.com/forums/pgMessa...2&tid=34444403
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Old Nov 22nd, 2007, 03:43 AM
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bkmg... thanks everyone...
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