Friday, 14 July 2017

Exploring Brussels In A Day

brussels day trip travelling in europe

City breaks have never been as popular as they are now. Our world is so well connected these days that it is easy to get on a train after work on a Friday and just leave for the weekend. Come back on a Sunday relaxed and with a bag full of lasting memories. The little escape usually takes no more than three days and is a welcome break from the mundane routine of a 9-5pm workweek. 

Having been on a city break to Amsterdam and Paris this year already, I was keen to explore another European capital and tick off my travel list. I always wanted to go to Brussels as I've never really visited Belgium properly. 

One of my colleagues visited the city not so long ago and said that you could easily view the sights within a day. Perfect, as there was no need in booking accommodation for the trip: wake up in the morning in my bed in London, spend the day in another country and fall back asleep at home in the UK - simple!

Said and done - I booked myself a ticket mid-week and ventured on a day trip to Brussels.  

Eurostar London To Brussels: When Is It The Best Time To Book Tickets?

Luckily the fastest way to get to Brussels is by the Eurostar high-speed train which takes you over to Europe in no time. I already enjoyed their comfortable way of travelling earlier this year and going to Brussels seemed the ideal occasion for my city adventure. 

I have to warn you, the Eurostar is pricey and not for the spontaneous who like to travel on short notice. Deals are rare, sometimes at the most random times and my colleague told me, she got a £40 return ticket in the first quarter of the year. The best opportunity is, therefore, to book far in advance.  

For Brussels, I selected the time frame of three months in advance. Thanks to the neat and organised website which provided me with a weekly overview of options and prices available, I was able to check and compare different times and days. 

I then opted for the cheapest fare available which fell on a Tuesday in July. In total, I paid £60 return which was the lowest fare for the month of July. Weekdays are generally cheaper than Friday's after work. The weekends are ridiculous, no matter how far you check in advance and don't get me started on the prices in December for a Bruges trip!

Enough moaning, I decided for a Tuesday mid-week, booked off the day and couldn't have been more excited. The Monday of said week went quickly and it was an early bedtime for me as I got up at 4:40 am the next day to catch the train at ridiculous o'clock (8 am) from St Pancras International. 

The Eurostar has different fleets and this one came with a modern and clean design. The seats were spacious and super comfortable with generous legroom and a plug to charge my phone. The high-speed train can reach up to 330km per hour and it ran so smoothly that I fell asleep on the spot and woke up 2h later in Brussels. 
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