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Belgium home base suggestions for 6 nights / 5 days

Re: Belgium/Brussels/Bruge/Ghent/Antwerp

We will be in this area for 6 nights/5 full days in early August coming from Amsterdam by train and then heading to Switzerland when we're done. . Looking for suggestions for home base to avoid moving hotels. I know we need to reservations made soon. My reading suggests to base in Ghent and day travel to Bruge and Brussels and Antwerp - what do you suggest? We're not into the party life but looking to soak in culture, food, history etc. Any recommendations for accomodations...don't need fancy just super clean? Thanks so much!

Posted by
6387 posts

I stayed in Bruge one night before in May. Not as many tourists. It was quite photogenic.
But somehow it did not live up to the hype.
I've stayed in Ghent and Antwerp and Brussels.
Ghent was the most memorable of all. But I caught it when some kind of street festival was going on.
Stay in Ghent and do daytrips that should work.

Posted by
329 posts

We based ourselves in Ghent and took the train to Brugge and Antwerp for day trips. We thought it was a good way of doing it for us. I loved Antwerp. The train station is one of the most beautiful stations i’ve seen.

Posted by
1005 posts

Ghent is a great choice since it's centrally located and you'll be able to do efficient day trips to the other destinations. However, you might get tired of the city if you're staying there for six nights, even with day trips elsewhere. If you want a more urban vibe with lots of local sights and restaurants, I'd choose Antwerp instead.

Posted by
4669 posts

I agree with T. from Rick Steves office. There's not that much of a time penalty for being in Antwerp and going to Bruges for the day. Antwerp has so much more to do. You are missing some great art museums in Brussels, but it's otherwise missable. (I've been to Brussels for the day from Antwerp at least four times. So my OPINION has some data behind it. I also like art.

I hope you're flying to Switzerland. Do you have to get to BRU? Or are you making a tedious train trip.

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