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Itinerary for Belgium

Hi. My husband and I have never been to Belgium, except in the airport in Brussels. We have traveled extensively though and are used to dealing with logistics.

We have a week to visit Belgium I April.

Does this itinerary work?
April 22: Land in Brussels and get on train to Antwerp
April 23: Day trip to Antwerp
April 24: Antwerp to Ghent
April 25 Ghent to Bruges, spend two nights
April 27 Leave Bruges to Brussels, spend two nights
April 29 Fly Home

Thanks for any comments.

Posted by
7556 posts

Desire to wake up in Bruges is a common theme of trips to Belgium. But it is not really necessary to change hotels at all for this daytripping area.

What does Daytrip to Antwerp mean if you are already there? What are your objectives in Brussels? What time is your flight home?

https://community.ricksteves.com/travel-forum/belgium/day-trips-from-brussels-768c7c85-75b9-4374-ad13-ae36967bc521

https://community.ricksteves.com/travel-forum/belgium/day-trips-from-brussels-besides-bruges-and-ghent

Posted by
7711 posts

Quick, but hits the highlights. What is there that you want to see in Brussels? Just a personal preference, but I would do 2 nights in Ghent, then get to Brussels early on the 28th, you would have plenty of time to see Grand Place and central Brussels. If you have more plans in Brussels than that, then your fine.

Posted by
100 posts

We definitely want to see the Grand Palace. We love museums and just love walking around, seeing people, stopping for coffee, when we are in cities.

Posted by
100 posts

And if we can minimize the number of hotels, it works for me. I hadn't thought of Antwerp until a friend said we would enjoy it. I definitely want to see Flanders field, and I have always been fascinated with Ghent since it was where the end of the War of 1812 in the States was negotiated.

Posted by
7711 posts

Ghent is a charming town, nice older core, if I were to compare to Bruges, Bruges focuses on tourism, Ghent is just a living city. You could easily spend more nights in Ghent, and daytrip to Antwerp. Ghent is centrally located, being about 40 to 45 minutes to either Brussels or Bruges, an hour to Antwerp. Bruges is worth the two nights, while touristy, it is nice, better in the evening when daytrippers leave.

Posted by
1909 posts

Looks pretty good to me. It's an itty bitty country, you could pretty well just staying in Antwerpen Ghent and see all the places you want to see. I'd probably do two hotel stays for a trip your length, not burn too much time moving around.

Posted by
7556 posts

I think you mean "Grand Place", the historic square in Brussels. There is also the Coudenbourg Palace (cellars), the only remains of that old palace, which I kind of like, but it's not like visiting a Palace!

Both Brussels and Antwerp have a very large number of museums. You may wish to research them, for closing-day-of-the-week, and which ones you want to see the most. Antwerp is my favorite place in the area, which conflicts with the many posters here who love Bruges. Of course they're especially good on a rainy day.