There can be few places left where you can totally switch off for a few days from the pressures of modern day living so completely as Bruges. Its beauty and tranquillity are outstanding, as befits the most perfectly preserved medieval town in Europe. Its atmosphere is totally unique, whether it’s a stroll by one of the canals, indeed Bruges is also known as ‘Venice of the North’, sipping a coffee in the Old Market Square with the 13th Century Flemish chimes ringing out from the belfry, or perhaps a gentle trip around the town by horse and carriage. Its serenity will captivate you and it has something for all tastes.
- Three nights in medieval Bruges
- Return flights
- Return coach transfer to your hotel
- Choice of excellent quality three and four-star hotels, superbly located in the heart of the old preserved town
- Guided walk of historic Bruges, arguably the most perfectly preserved medieval town in Europe
- Visit to a traditional Chocolate Maker
- Visit to Ypres and the First World War battlefields
- Escorted by our experienced tour manager
You should arrive at the airport to take your flight to Brussels. On arrival a coach will then take you to your hotel in the heart of Bruges old town.
After breakfast you have a guided walk of this beautiful town which really does show off its charm perfectly. The whole atmosphere of Bruges is pure romance and really reflects the true spirit of medieval Flanders. Its streets are crammed with fascination and yet it is so compact that the walking tour emphasises the main sights and attractions perfectly. Bruges has so much to offer and is centred around the main square, dominated by the Belfry and when the unique old Flemish chimes are heard, the atmosphere is perfect. You can climb this tower, if you can face the 366 steps: the view is breathtaking. You will also see the City Hall, the old Law Courts and the ‘Basilica of the Holy Blood’ in which is housed some of Jesus’ blood. Another must is the Notre Dame Church which houses Michelangelo’s beautiful Madonna and Child, carved in pure white marble. Belgium, and Flanders in particular, is very famous for brewing beer, indeed there are over 500 varieties throughout the country. One of the features of brewing in Belgium is the great variety of types of beer and ingredients used, even things as diverse as cherries and oats! So a tour to Bruges would not be complete without a visit to a brewery! Some of you may choose to take the short walk to the “Halve Maan” brewery museum to learn the ins and outs of brewing in this quaint and very traditional establishment and then unwind with a tasting.
After breakfast we will arrange an optional tour by boat of some of Bruges’ canals, which gives an interesting view of the town (subject to seasonal operation). Late morning, for those who are interested, the coach will leave Bruges for a tour of some of the places made famous during the First World War. However, the excursion is not compulsory so should you choose to have free time in Bruges, perhaps ride in a horse drawn carriage, or visit one of the many other attractions, this afternoon is the ideal opportunity to do so. Your main visit is to Ypres, the centre of British activity in Belgium and although the town was flattened, it has been restored to its original appearance. Ypres is the home of the Menin Gate, the memorial to the missing where the last post is played every evening at 8 o’clock. You also visit Hill 62, more commonly known as Sanctuary Wood to see some preserved trenches. Perhaps the most moving part of the afternoon is the visit to Tyne Cot cemetery at Passchendaele, which is the largest in the British sector. You will return to your hotel in Bruges late afternoon.
Bruges chocolates are known throughout the world and so this morning you visit one of the few establishments which still makes chocolates by traditional methods. They are only made from the finest ingredients and during the demonstration you learn all about this delicious craft. A coach will later return you to the airport for your flight home.