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Brussels to Luxembourg City to Bastogne

Hello,

We are a group of 4 arriving in Brussels in mid April. We are interested in a day trip from Brussels to Luxembourg City and Bastogne and back to Brussels. We have considered renting a car and driving ourselves, but are unsure about crossing the border, delays etc. Wondering if anyone knows a guide that would pick us up and drive us to above cities and return to Brussels? Is this itinerary even doable in one day? Thanks for any help.

Teresa Payne

Posted by
2127 posts

Just rent a car and drive. The border crossing is a non event, as within the Schengen area there are no border formalities. In fact, between Luxembourg and Belgium the border has been open for over half a century.

When I was a kid we would often drive through there on our way to our holiday in Southern France. There is a village on the border called Martelange where one side of the main street is in Luxembourg, and the other side in Belgium. It is on the old route to Luxembourg which we always took before the motorway opened. And because gas was always cheaper in Luxembourg that side of the street is one gas station after another. Everyone would fill up there on the way south...

Posted by
33329 posts

Crossing the border formalities are much like crossing the border between Kansas and Colorado on I-70 except the truck weigh station is bigger and instead of a Welcome to Kansas sign or Welcome to Colorado sign there is a sign saying Luxembourg (or Belgique) and showing the National speed limits you are entering.

Just short of the border on the Belgian side is a McDonalds across the road from an Ikea. At the first exit on the Luxembourg side it is a rest stop and fuel. Like the previous reply, fuel is always much cheaper in Luxembourg and all stations in Luxembourg, no matter if on the motorway or in a town, have the same price per litre. The biggest difference I ever saw was 1.5 Euro cents, almost always they are within one or two tenths of a Euro cent per litre. The only time I saw that 1.5 Euro cent difference was in Wasserbillig and never since.

I had a significant delay once a year or two ago between Namur and Luxembourg where the whole motorway was stopped due to an accident but Waze routed me around and I only lost about 20 minutes - and it was scenic.

Posted by
33329 posts

parking is rarely free in lots or on the road in Luxembourg city. But all the trains and trams and buses in the entire country are free to ride.

Posted by
33329 posts

One other thing I just remembered, about driving in Brussels - well a couple - first and most important and I acknowledge the broadness of my brush, Belgians drive like idiots. They don't signal, they cut across lanes, they stop for no reason, their lane control is sometimes best described as vague, yet the place is crawling with speed cameras waiting to send you a fine.

Second - the kerbs (curbs) in Brussels specifically are higher than I have seen anywhere and they are sharp. When you open your door you may well scrape the bottom of the door or dent the bottom of the door and that will result in a charge at the rental place. Take lots of photos.

Third - the road surfaces range from OK if they have just been redone to downright awful. I often avoid the free highways in Belgium to spend tolls and time going around through France. You can't do that on your route. Make sure your fillings aren't loose. The worst is Brussels to Liege.

Fourth - Luxembourg drivers are like a cross between Belgian and German drivers - and geographically that's true - who drive like lunatics but much faster, regardless of speed limits. My guess is that some must be EU diplomates commuting between Strasbourg, Luxembourg and Brussels - the three centres of EU government- so therefore don't worry about being seen by the cameras. I just let them pass...

Posted by
2127 posts

When you enter Luxemburg from Belgium on the motorway there are two service areas (on on each side) just beyond the border. These petrol stations have the highest turnover in Europe...

Posted by
33329 posts

(...Belgian drivers ...) ( present company excluded, I hope)

Posted by
171 posts

I must say that my personal experience is that Belgian drivers are more courteous to pedestrians than the French.

Posted by
2127 posts

The generation of Belgians that did not have to pass a driving test to get a licence is nowadays only a minority, so I expect that the average competence is increasing. Also, like in many other countries car drivers are always liable for the medical costs of a pedestrian they hit, irrespective of the circumstances. So they will indeed try not to hit someone...

Posted by
128 posts

It will be a long day if you rent a car. The museum in Bastogne is fabulous and you may want to spend three or four hours in there. I'd consider staying in Bastogne overnight if you have the time for it. I recommend Hotel Wagon Leo if you decide to stay in Bastogne. They will give you a deal on their prix fixe meals if you are a hotel guest. BTW, my dad was in the Battle of the Bulge, but not in the siege of Bastogne. He was stationed at an airfield between Bastogne and Brussels. Touring this part of Belgium was extremely memorable for me--and the Belgians were so welcoming when they found out my dad had been there during WWII. I hope it's as memorable for you.

Posted by
157 posts

Jumping on to everyone else…..rent a car and drive. Belgian A routes are great to travel on. Besides that if you want a driver to do all that it will cost a bundle. Belgium and Luxembourg are in the EU and there are no border formalities. Rural Belgium is worth the journey. I’ve been to Bastogne and other battlegrounds around there and love roaming back country roads.

Hope that helps.