I need some suggestions for train travel options.
My wife and I will be taking a short trip to Belgium and Paris in mid July. We are flying into Brussels and taking a train to Brugges, where we will spend 3 nights in the North part of the city. We are then taking a train to Paris for two nights, and a train back to Brussels where we will spend one night before returning home.
I need some hints on the train travel: How easy is it to take luggage on the train? How far in advance should I book the Paris/Brussels train? Do I need to book the Belgium trains in advance?
Also, while in Brugges I would like to take two trips. What would you recommend: Ghent, Antwerp, Ostende, Brussels, or some other location.
Thanks in advance for your help.
Book you Paris-Brussels as much you can in advance...price will be way lower, even in 1st class.
You cannot book train rides in Belgium, so that make it easy.
For luggage, you'll never have big problems, these are pretty easy.
For the side trips...
Ghent, amazing city, a lot of great sites, but quite spread around.
Antwerp...one of the fashion capital of Europe, great zoo...and a lot of history...
Ostend, you can get there in less than 30 minutes by train from Brugges, you arrive right in the middle of it...in July it can be fun just for a walk along the beach in a short half day.
Brussels...one of the capital of Europe, but Brugges attract more tourists than Brussels...there is the Atonium, funny thing to see...a wonderul museum on cartoons...well....Tintin is belgian! And all the area around the Grad-Place, which is quite stuning.
Hope this help,
Ostende sounds like a great place to walk around and have some seafood, but probably just a late afternoon early evening trip from Brugges. Other than that, I think I'm going to do a day in Gent and a day in Brussels.
By the way, is the PA in PA Leslie short for Pennsylvania. My wife and I live in New Jersey and we both grew up in Philadelphia.
Thank you so much.
Great idea for Ostende, you are very right. And only worth it if the weather is nice.
PA stand for Pierre-Alexandre, my first name. Leslie is the name of my son.
PA....and they call me Peter in english...
I wouldn't recommend Ostende for anything else then a good meal.
Ghent is great, the 18th of July the "Gentse feesten" starting (http://www.gentsefeesten.be/), it's a big street festival that goes on for 10 days. It's great if you like to party, but it's not a good time to go there if you want to go sightseeing in a clean town.