Immerse yourself in historic Bruges, the medieval port town that has retained much of its striking architecture. Enjoy fine Belgian chocolate and step back in time to when the area was dominated by the First World War.
Meet in Rail Discoveries' dedicated Departure Office at London St Pancras International before travelling by Eurostar to Lille followed by an onward coach journey to Bruges, a charming city with a picture postcard centre. On arrival, check in to your hotel, the Ibis Brugge Centrum, where you will spend the next three nights.
Set off on a guided tour of Bruges which has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2000, and as you walk through the winding cobbled alleys and alongside romantic canals, it is easy to see why. Your tour begins at a famous artisan chocolate maker's in the heart of the city, where you have a chance to observe how the delicious confectionery is made. You will then go on explore many reminders of its prosperous past, as much of its medieval architecture has been preserved, as you explore with your guide. Continue wandering its secret nooks and crannies during some free time this afternoon.
Today's excursion begins in the tiny western Belgian village of Passchendaele, site of one of the most controversial battles of World War One - the Third Battle of Ypres. Here you make a moving visit to the museum, erected to commemorate the 500,000 fallen allied soldiers. Continue to Tyne Cot Cemetery, the largest Commonwealth war memorial and cemetery in the world as well as Hill 60, where it's still possible to see a preserved section of the German front line trenches. This evening transfer to the Menin Gate in nearby Ypres to witness the tradition of the Last Post ceremony, played every day at 8pm by the volunteer fire brigade.
Depart Bruges by coach and travel across the French border to Lille, where you will join the Eurostar service back to London.
Whether you are planning a holiday in the UK, mainland Europe or further afield, a Rail Discoveries tour offers you a superb way to experience some of the world's most beautiful destinations. You can watch the wonderful and ever-changing scenery glide past; after all, rail journeys often go where no other form of transport can.
Rail Discoveries believe that experience counts – and as part of the Great Rail Journeys group, they have over 45 years of it. They create interesting and exciting holidays, combining the best or most scenic rail journeys with conveniently located hotels and inclusive excursions so that you enjoy the journey out and back as much as your time exploring each new destination.
One of the most important features of a Rail Discoveries holiday is the added value that the friendly, helpful and knowledgeable Tour Managers bring to every tour, allowing you to sit back, relax and enjoy your holiday with the knowledge that everything is in capable hands.
You have the peace of mind of 100% financial protection when you book with Rail Discoveries. Their price promise provides transparency and ensures once your booking is confirmed, they won’t increase the price of your holiday, even if their costs go up. They are members of the Association of Independent Tour Operators and flight-inclusive holidays are ATOL or ABTOT protected, while non-flight-inclusive holidays are protected by ABTOT.
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