Hi travelers, I have been reading some of the threads about Belgium and which city to make a home base. We are seniors and at this point in our travels, we like to stay in one or a few places (over 2+ weeks) and experience them more intensively than do the whirlwind (see every possible city we can) travel. Here is what we are thinking and would appreciate comments on the itinerary and connections.
We will be flying to Belgium from Chicago in late October. Maybe one night in Brussels (may as well get over the jet lag here) and then to Bruges for 4 or 5 nights. Take a train to Amsterdam for 2 -3 nights (we have been to Amsterdam before and really love the city). The we would take a train from Amsterdam to Berlin for 6-7 nights and fly back to Chicago from Berlin.
From another thread, it appeared that one does not need advance reservations for a train from Belgium to Amsterdam, except for a high speed train. What is the difference in times between a high speed train and a regular train? What city would be best to depart from Belgium to Amsterdam?
Would it be better to fly from Chicago into Amsterdam and then take a train to Belgium and then a train from Belgium (Brussels?) to Berlin?
We are thinking trains rather than flying within Europe just to see the scenery and avoid the wasted time in airports.
We are leaning towards staying in Bruges as a home base to make day trips to Ghent, Antwerp, Brussels or somwehere else we may learn about. That way, I can minimize the number of hotel reservations I need to make and just select the days to begin the journey, the date going to Amsterdam and the date going to Berlin.
For inner belgium train travel, does it make sense to jest get Daily Senior Tickets or get some kind of multi-day train pass?
Any opinions or suggestions will be appreciated.