|Travel by Coach||0 Days|
Join us for a magical Christmas break in Ostend, known for its wonderful atmosphere and excellent location. We’ll spend time celebrating this amazing time of year at the Royal Astrid Hotel, as well as visiting nearby destinations with our excursions, including Brussels, Bruges and Sluis.
Our first excursion will take us to bustling Brussels, which will be decked with festive decorations. Admire the beautiful architecture here, as well as visiting the famous Grand Place with its medieval guildhalls.
On Christmas Eve, we’ll make our way to Bruges, the ‘Venice of the North’. This charming city is so-called for its intricate network of canals, which lend the city a beautiful backdrop. Discover Bruges’ many historical sights during our time here, such as the medieval belfry, the beautiful Church of Our Lady and the Provinciaal Hof.
We’ll celebrate at our hotel with like-minded holidaymakers on Christmas Day, with excellent entertainment and delicious festive meals. On Boxing Day, we’ll enjoy a morning’s scenic drive to Sluis, located in Zeelandic Flanders. This lovely town boasts a wonderfully Flemish atmosphere, and also has many sights to take in.It will then be time for our Christmas break to come to an end, as we make our way home after a great time away.
Day One - UK to Ostend
We’ll make our way from the UK to Ostend, via Calais, where we’ll stay at the Royal Astrid Hotel for the next five nights. (D)
Day Two to Five - Ostend
We spend the next four days in Ostend, with three included excursions taking us to some of the best towns and cities that Belgium has to offer.
We visit the city of Bruges, one of the most picturesque cities in Europe, known for its incredibly well preserved city centre. While here you'll have free time to explore the city at leisure or you can choose to join an optional guided tour of the city with us.
We also visit the town of Brussels, one of the highlights of the city is the Grand Place, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and known as one of the most beautiful central squares in the world. You will have plenty of time to explore the Grand Place and Brussels other sights at leisure, or join an optional excursion to explore the city on a guided tour.
We also take an excursion along the coast to the town of Sluis, just over the border in the Netherlands, on the drive along the coast we will enjoy great views as we go.
There is also the opportunity to join us on an optional excursion to the town of Ypres, while here you can learn the history of the town's involvement in World War I and see its magnificent cathedral and vast 13th century cloth hall. (B,D)
Day Six - Ostend to UK
Time to say goodbye today; we depart Ostend and travel back to the UK via Calais. (B)
Enjoy a wonderful festive package at your hotel, including a traditional Christmas dinner and a festive entertainment programme.
Royal Astrid Hotel
The Royal Astrid Hotel in Ostend provides comfortable accommodation within easy reach of the shops, bars, harbour and parks. The cosy bar with fireplace is the perfect place to unwind with a drink in the evening.
Full Day: Bruges
Enjoy the exquisitely preserved medieval city of Bruges during this excursion. Charming Bruges is known for its winding cobbled streets, pretty gabled houses and attractive tree-lined canals, each crossed by a humpback bridge.
Full Day: Brussels
Explore Belgium’s beautiful capital city Brussels, where one of the must-see sights is the stunning Grand Place, considered to be one of the most beautiful squares in Europe. This central square in Brussels is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is absolutely stunning - the architecture is some of the best in the whole of the city.
There are a number of notable buildings surrounding the Grand Place, including the Town Hall, Guildhalls and the Museum of the City of Brussels. Of course, there are many other worthy attractions in Brussels, including the Cinquantenaire triumphal arch, the Basilica of the Sacred Heart and the Palace of Justice. We’ll get to see some of these attractions while touring the city at leisure.
Half Day: Sluis and Coastal Drive
Well take a scenic coastal drive crossing just over the border into The Netherlands, visiting the small town of Sluis. Despite being a small town there is a wealth of history here, with the place itself being more than 700 years old. The town was one of the first to be captured by the Spanish, being held by them for almost 20 years before gaining freedom in the Eighty Years War, which ultimately led to the Netherlands regaining its independence. There is a pretty canal here which is a great place to relax and enjoy a drink from a local cafe.
Bruges Guided Walking Tour
Bruges is a fascinating city, and we’ll be able to enjoy a guided walking tour of the city while we’re there. This will provide us with more information about the city, as well as showing us some of the most famous attractions and landmarks.
Brussels Guided City Tour
As the capital of Belgium, Brussels is understandably large and this guided city tour will help us to explore some of the city’s best sights. We’ll be able to explore the city and learn more about its history and various sights.
Half Day: Ypres
We'll take a trip to Ypres today to explore this incredibly historical town in Belgium. Ypres is home to a great many fascinating sights, such as the 13th century Cloth Hall and Saint Martin’s Cathedral, which features remarkable Gothic architecture.
During our time in Ypres, we’ll be able to tour these attractions at leisure, as well as enjoying walks through the town to see the local sights.