Go Back  Fodor's Forum > Destinations > Europe
Reload this Page > Where to stay near Lille or Brussels before Paris-Roubaix Race?
Notices

Where to stay near Lille or Brussels before Paris-Roubaix Race?

Reply

Jul 7th, 2010, 12:34 PM
  #1
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 5,228
Where to stay near Lille or Brussels before Paris-Roubaix Race?

I'm considering a trip to the epic Paris-Roubaix Bicycle Race next April. Paris-Roubaix is a one day race always held on Easter Sunday I believe but I can't find the schedule for 2011.

DH is not a fan of large cities, art or museums. I do those kind of trips with others. I'm looking for a small, picturesque location to just relax, stroll, maybe rent bikes for 2-3 days prior to heading to the Arenberg Forest cobbles south of Lille to see the race. What are your ideas near either Lille or Brussels?
Ann Marie
amwosu is offline  
Reply With Quote
Jul 7th, 2010, 10:10 PM
  #2
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 1,723
Why not LIlle itself?

Lavandula
lavandula is offline  
Reply With Quote
Jul 8th, 2010, 06:06 AM
  #3
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 3,542
Brugge?
joannyc is offline  
Reply With Quote
Jul 8th, 2010, 08:12 AM
  #4
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 5,228
I had considered Lille but the city has a population of over 200,000 and the entire metropolitan area with suburbs has a population of over a million. DH travels in big cities for work and the last thing he wants to do is go to a large city on vacation.

The whole Nord-Pas de Calais region seems to be formerly industrial and was pretty well bombed during last century's wars. I was hoping to find a little town like Senlis which is just north of Paris. The appeal there is a unified medieval ambience with small museums and shops and plenty of green space.

I had resisited Brugge due to it's size but reading about it, I discovered that it must have escaped devastation during WWI and WWII because it appears there is much medieval architecture still standing.

Thanks to both of you.
amwosu is offline  
Reply With Quote
Jul 8th, 2010, 05:09 PM
  #5
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 1,723
Lille has a pretty centre in a similar architectural style to Flemish and Dutch cities and doesn't have a big city feel. I don't think there is much around Lille that is too picturesque (lots of bare fields, a little monotonous for driving), and southern Belgium isn't much of a tourist destination either, from what I gather has to do with a depressed economy in cities like Charleroi. If you would consider going as far as Brugge, I'd recommend Ieper (Ypres), which is closer. Much of the medieval architecture has been rebuilt and you can use it as a platform from which to explore WWI history. There is also the very impressive Menin Gate, with a list of all the WWI dead from Commonwealth countries, and a daily bugling of the Last Post. Arras also has 2 building which are on the UNESCO Heritage List:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arras

Lavandula
lavandula is offline  
Reply With Quote
Jul 8th, 2010, 05:20 PM
  #6
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 5,228
'I don't think there is much around Lille that is too picturesque'

I got that impression while starting to research where to stay. Thanks for pointing me in the direction of Ieper. I will look into that as a possibility. I appreciate your help.
Ann Marie
amwosu is offline  
Reply With Quote
Jul 8th, 2010, 06:05 PM
  #7
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 1,723
Actually I was just looking at pictures of Kortrijk (Courtrai). I've never been there, but that's pretty close to Lille too, and looks to be quite interesting. Ieper is a must, though.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kortrijk

Lavandula
lavandula is offline  
Reply With Quote
Jul 9th, 2010, 03:56 AM
  #8
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 20,189
Lille is a magnificent city in the central areas, plus it has a metro system that runs all the way to the Belgian border, including La Piscine, the excellent museum of Roubaix which is in a converted municipal bath house.
kerouac is online now  
Reply With Quote
 



Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -8. The time now is 02:14 PM.