411 Kms from Bellicourt
The best way to get around England would be to book your stay in its magnificent capital city, London. Of course, your stay here might be slightly more expensive than in other places, which aren’t so main stream. But you will certainly appreciate the ease with which you will find frequent transportation to all other parts of the country. Read More
The best way to get around England would be to book your stay in its magnificent capital city, London. Of course, your stay here might be slightly more expensive than in other places, which aren’t so main stream. But you will certainly appreciate the ease with which you will find frequent transportation to all other parts of the country.
Download a London underground map from the internet and carry a print out with you for your comfort. We reach the station and at the station ask for the Oyster card, it's basically a prepaid card which is used for travelling in London underground trains. Just fill the card with a certain amount of money and flash it at the entry/exit in all stations. The money will get deducted from your card depending on the distance travelled by you.You can also use this card to travel in buses in and within London. We filled the card for 20 pounds each. This saves you the time and also money of buying tickets, every time you travel in train or bus. Do not take the taxis, unless you have lot of money to spend, as taxi travel is quiet expensive especially when you are holidaying on a shoe string budget.
London: Highly commercial but very safe and comfortable for solo travelers, London has attractions of all kinds – Wimbledon, Lords, Wembley stadium for sports aficionados, British Library and Shakespeare Globe Centre for literature fanatics, London Eye, Buckingham Place, Big Ben, London Bridge and many other buildings for heritage admirers, Southall for authentic Indian food lovers, Harrods and Oxford Street for fashionistas, Design Museum and art galleries for art devotees among others. You name it and London has it. Also known as the birthplace of the Metro or London Tube as they call it, Public transport here is impeccable. Climate is slightly grey and cold but the warmth of people will melt your heart. Huge Indian diaspora presence makes you feel at home. Global cuisine restaurants and cafes are everywhere. Only thing that makes it slightly unattractive is the cost on your wallet.
I was going for a packaged tour to Europe, covering 9 cities in a short span of 15 days. But luckily, my family decided to leave for UK 3 days earlier than the trip started and we stayed at a friend of my dad's. And that's what I'm going to talk about in my little article here. London, not through a bus the tour took me in, but through my own eyes, the way I liked it and the way I believe it should be traveled.The journey began when we reached UK around noon. We reached home, had lunch and spent some time resting to give the jet lag a break. Evening crept and we left with my uncle. We walked towards harrow street. It was a beautiful way surrounded by greenery and the prettiest houses ever. Not even half an hour around that area and I was already telling my mom that I wanted to settle back here someday when I grow old. That's the magic of that place. British houses can make you fall in love instantly. You can walk for hours and not get tired, that's how beautiful and soothing the weather is. It doesn't get dark till 8pm or 9pm there. It even goes onto 10pm at times.
Ok so basically this was a long vacation for me after a long, long, long long time.(yes, that long). To be honest, I didnt even remember since how long I hadnt had a break for 15 days at a stretch. Yes sir!!A travel freak who hadnt ever been on a vacation for 15 days. Lotsa reasons for that but right now is not the time for sad stories. So yea, London!!!There's something about that city.
Almost five years have gone by since, and I can still vividly remember how fascinated I was, not just with the idea, but actually being there and taking it all in. From attending a workshop on Conflict Resolution at Belfast University in Northern Ireland to round table conferences in London, from sightseeing to shopping, from trying out Irish stew to crossing the carrick-a-rede bridge, from attending a session in the Houses of Parliament to taking a trip on the London Eye...I came back home with that sense of wonder still inside of me. And I tell you, that feeling is one of the most beautiful things you can ever experience.Calcutta, Darjeeling (October 2012)
Following trip was to London. The journey was bad. I used Megabusgold (sleeper). Which sucks. Seriously guys. I do not recommend this claustrophobic bus to anyone in their sanest of minds. London's awe inspiring historical structures, museums, Lords stadium, Wimbledon(during the event) were experiences which cannot be forgotten!
I loved reading books when I was younger and from as long as I can remember, I have always been fascinated about the United Kingdom. My brother went to study in the City of Bath for his PhD and hence I got my chance to visit the UK during my summer holidays. UK for me was not about being all tourist-y and availing the Hop-on Hop-off Bus services in London. UK for me was about the countryside, the romance in the air and the beauty of the greens. I have always been a person who loves exploring new and unusual things. I do not like the quintessential way of doing things and hence I wanted to explore the "roads less travelled''. I had gone with my parents and we availed of a private cab service to drive us around the countryside.
Describing the experience that is travelling through London is difficult. The city has too many facets, too many elements, to wrap up neatly in words and present it as a package. You could spend pages describing the architecture- the Victorian, the modern, the post-modern.
326 Kms from Bellicourt
Amsterdam is on almost everyone's travel list, be it for a perfect bachelorette trip or a vacation with friends. And I am lucky enough to call it "home". Although known for Weed & Prostitution it has a lot more to offer than that, Trust me I have been living here for 1.5 years now and if I am being brutally honest, I am still discovering something new everyday.So here I am writing this blog to share the top 5 "To do things in Amsterdam".The first thing I did after coming out of the Airport is - Got clicked at the IAMSTERDAM letters !!! ????
Last summer, I was interning in Dortmund, a city in Germany known for its football and more so for the club's loud fans. I hadn't been in Germany for more than 2 weeks, but the prospect of travelling to Amsterdam , the city most famous for its red light district and it's progressive tolerant policy to soft drugs was quite an idea I had been harbouring in my mind for a long time. Booked my tickets via Eurolines, a meagre 9€ for a 6hr ride. That's pretty cheap compared to European standards, and don't ever make the mistake of taking Eurorail unless you have too much money to throw away ! But Amsterdam turned out to be much more than just a land of legalized prostitution and weed. Also called the 'Venice of North' , a lot many canals criss-cross the city. This city has more bicycles than their population, a plausible explanation to the fact as to why Europeans stay so healthy and fit compared to their counterparts on the other side of the Pacific. The place is beautiful, the people helpful and sweet. Travelling unlike tourism doesn't have a pre-planned trip itinerary customised for you by a tour company, it's about making spontaneous decisions. So unlike other tourists, I decided to take the free shuttle ferry 'Buiksloterweg' across the IJ harbour to visit the Eye Film Museum, which most people skip on their trip to Amsterdam. The museum collection was comprised of movie posters dating back to origin of cinema itself, a chronology of film equipments from the time it all started to all the modern technology in use today. Enamoured by the collection , coupled with a discount on movie tickets for students , I ended up watching a critically acclaimed short movie. Another advantage of this place is that you can get clicked at the iconic 'I amsterdam' letters which is quite crowd-free at this location unlike the other one where a lot of people throng by. After a couple of pictures later ,I returned to the mainland by the next ferry which runs every 3 min, picked up a map of the city from the city help desk, and was off to the city centre more popularly known as the Dam Square. The neoclassical Royal Palace, the Madame Tussauds wax museum, the National Monument ( a stone pillar to commemorate World War 2 victims) and a fancy department store make the 4 sides of the square. The atmosphere here was electric, the crowd crazy. Took me a few moments to take it all in , Europeans surely know how to have fun. By the time I realized I should move on, it was dusk. The next destination was clear in my head : De Wallen or Amsterdam's Red Light District ! The whole street was bathed in neon lights , a large number of bikini clad heads were propping up from the windows in all directions ,women of various ethnicities, built and age groups. Call the Europeans crazy or educationally oriented, they have as many museums as any popular junk food chain counter. I decided to check out the Prostitution Museum, and it turned out to be quite a learning experience, a typical insight into a prostitutes' life. Well atleast they have got one thing right, they treat prostitution as a regular respectable job.The right light district did get me taking a round of the whole street, doubling back and running up the whole street again till I could take in all the color and the glamour. Next I decided to try the Leidsplein pub crawl and it turned out to be much fun. A little bit of boozing and hell lot of partying, it was already 3am when the music stopped. It was quite late and I didn't have a hostel booked so I decided to spend the night at the Central Railway Station. Bad idea. I would advise anyone against doing that, the weather was super cold and windy, and I barely slept the night, desperately waiting for the sun to rise.
You do know why Amsterdam is on this list, right? If not, you can go watch the cult Kangana Ranaut-starrer Queen once again and you would know. Along with that, there's so much more that you and your guy gang can do in Amsterdam, and if all of you have a thing for art then it'll be a paradise for you. You can boat around aimlessly in Amstel river till the night dawns and then go out partying again.Must do while here: Admire art at the Van Gogh Museum. Drink and watch movies in the open-air theatre at Vondelpark.Average cost per day per head (excluding flights): Rs. 3,500Best Hotels.Read more about Amsterdam.
Next morning as the ship harboured at Amsterdam, the coach was ready at the Port to take all tourists for next part of the journey. The day was spent in visiting Historic Wind Mills of Holland, Cheese and Shoe Factory, Madurodam. Post Lunch the next city which is 1hour drive from Amsterdam was Brussels in Belgium. Overnight stay at Belgium. A city famous for rich chocolates and fine glass.
One more in Amsterdam. She was my company for the city tour.
Amsterdam, Netherlands. She plays for the Dutch National Basketball team. And yeah, Dutch are the tallest people in the world.
The first step in planning for a trip is deciding the itinerary and the ways to travel. I was travelling in the month of February and the ticket were comparatively cheaper as it was the low season and that really helped. I bought a 15 day EuroLines bus pass. The pass allows you to travel by any EuroLines bus across Europe in that 15 day period without any extra charge. The pass can be bought at the following rates (Youth- 26 years or Less):
Amsterdam is not a city but an experience. From artsy museums and Anne Frank house to the very famous red light district & up beat smoke joints , it is this paradox that defines the unique character of Amsterdam.It is impossible to cover everything in Amsterdam in two-three days, given the sheer number of museums & cafes & activities.Here are some tips that made our backpacking easy on the pockets.1. Staying near the airport: Though 20 kms from the city center, we had no difficulty in commuting due to free airport shuttles and metro. There are many hotels and hostels to choose from and helped us save few bucks.2. Getting a day/2 day pass: When in Europe; Never ever; travel by cabs. The infrastructure is so amazing that you can travel by public transport w/o any hassle. There are many cards that you can purchase depending on the number of days and places you want to visit. More info: http://www.iamsterdam.com/en/visiting/plan-your-trip/getting-around/public-transport3.Falafel, falafel & more falafel: Forget gourmet restaurants & refined cuisines, learn to live on falafel, fries & other street foods. It is okay to visit an Indian restaurant, once in a while, to satiate your tangy taste buds.4.Biking is the way of life: Do not opt for guided closed bus tours (Not sure if they are present in Amsterdam. But thumb rule for all travel. No hop on hop off tours) Instead, rent a bike from any bike rental company. You can ride through main square, Jewish quarter,flea market. Taking a canal ride is also a great option, especially if you love to have the wind in your hair and want to know a little bit about the place.Day 1:We were welcomed by heavy showers. However, the beautiful city doesn't let your spirits dampen. Amsterdam is quintessential European city adorned with long canals and medieval architecture. What sets this city apart is the boundless liberty of indulgence it offers to all who visit. Be it smoking joints or dark alleys of red light district, Amsterdam makes it all classy.As the rain abated, we spent the evening enjoying some delicious fries, walking in dam square,listening to some fabulous street artists, exploring the overcrowded red light district; in short, just taking in the spirit of this amazing city.Day 2:For artsy fellows, there are numerous museums this city has to offer; The most significant of them all being the Van Gogh Museum displaying some of Van Gogh's biggest works. Make sure to book the tickets online to avoid long queues.For lesser mortals like us, we headed to Vondelpark to immerse in the sunny day. After a sumptuous lunch at the Indian restaurant near Central , we headed to Anne Frank's house only to be greeted by long queues. Anne Frank's house is the mecca for avid book readers, for she has left an everlasting impression on the world with her mere words. A little girl who , in her 2 years of forced hiding, penned down a beautiful story of hope, despair , longing and an invincible spirit of human existence. It is amazing to see the well preserved rooms and secret annex, indeed a commendable effort.After a somber mood, we headed to the Heineken experience. It is indeed a beautiful interactive experience for connoisseurs.The advantage of having the 1/2 day pass is you can just hop on a tram and go wide and far in Amsterdam. We did the same and discovered a beautiful lake unknown in some suburb of the city. We spent out evening on the shore of this serene lake with no soul in sight, a welcoming change from the hustle and bustle of Amsterdam.Day 3:
158 Kms from Bellicourt
There is no question of escaping the romance of Paris . Be it the love locks or cruising the seine, every lover on earth longs to lock lips under the Parisian charm.My tour guide gave a special tip to the pretty women in the group -” Never trust a guy who gets a combination lock”. So, the favorite past time of eligible bachelors in Paris is to date foreign girls!. Who wouldn’t wanna miss the thrill of falling in love in Parees. And every single girl wishes for the same …A lock , a love-lock on the bridge. Apparently Parisian men hate it !!! They hate it cos its soo cliched. Not every one is lucky with love, so they engrave “I love Pizza” or “I love macarons at Laduree. How sweet is that!Read More
There is no question of escaping the romance of Paris . Be it the love locks or cruising the seine, every lover on earth longs to lock lips under the Parisian charm.My tour guide gave a special tip to the pretty women in the group -” Never trust a guy who gets a combination lock”. So, the favorite past time of eligible bachelors in Paris is to date foreign girls!. Who wouldn’t wanna miss the thrill of falling in love in Parees. And every single girl wishes for the same …A lock , a love-lock on the bridge. Apparently Parisian men hate it !!! They hate it cos its soo cliched. Not every one is lucky with love, so they engrave “I love Pizza” or “I love macarons at Laduree. How sweet is that!
This time its about this city which I describe as Romantic, Fashionable, Arty, Expensive, and Classical..Yes! PARIS!!!Situated in the north west of France, the capital and the epitome of beauty in all its forms has made Paris the most famous destination among travellers in Europe.From fashion to food, architecture to gardens and home to one of the most famous wonders of the world, metropolis Paris is filled with endless discoveries and suprises. One who comes here gets a treat to see and a chance to be lost in the true sense and feel of the cultural capital.
If you thought the French capital is only about the Eiffel Tower and the feeling called love, think again. Paris Saint Germain is a massive force to reckon with in the footballing world, and hence Stade de Paris is a must visit venue.Famous footballers to have played here: Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Thiago Silva, Edinson Cavani, Angel Di Maria, Ronaldinho, George Weah.Things to do apart from football: Visit the Eiffel Tower. Experience the best works of art at The Louvre museum.Average expenditure per day per head: Rs. 5,000Book the best hotels.Read more about the city.
Paris, France. This one is my favorite. But I don't know anything about them. :P
I was entering the city just as the Parisian skyline was turning into a crimson hue and that was a sight I will always remember as the bus drove along the majestic Siene River with the river looking just like a mirror reflecting the city skyline. I had booked a studio apartment near the Avenue des Champs-Élysées.After checking in, I had my breakfast at Mc Donalds as I was running really short on cash by now. Some of the non-clichéd Parisian attractions were the order of the day. I went to visit Père Lachaise Cemetery where the legendary poet and singer Jim Morrison is buried. I also visited the Catacombs. The Catacombs of Paris are underground ossuaries in Paris, France, which hold the remains of more than six million people in a small part of the ancient Mines of Paris tunnel network. Located south of the former city gate "Barrière d’Enfer" (Gate of Hell) beneath Rue de la Tombe-Issoire, the ossuary was founded when city officials had two simultaneous problems: a series of cave-ins beginning 1774, and overflowing cemeteries, particularly Saint Innocents. Nightly processions of bones from 1786 to 1788 transferred remains from cemeteries to the reinforced tunnels, and more remains were added during later years. After this eerie experience I went to the Louvre Museum, one of the most iconic one is the whole world. As I had a European student card, I could buy tickets for only 12 euros instead of the regular 48 euros. I tried to cover as much as I could but I found out that 2 full days were also not enough to cover the entire museum. In the evening I sat at a famous Parisian Café having French delicacies like Macarons and croissants.
11 | Paris + Bruges + AMSTERDAMEasy train connections connect the romantic city of lights, a charming Belgian village with endless varieties of brew, and a beautiful canalled city on water. Beaming with museums, great food and nightlife this itinerary is ideal for culture-lovers and foodies and ideal any time of the year. Remember to pack your camera to capture that quintessential European architecture and comfortable shoes for long strolls through winding narrow streets.
MAJESTIC, PARISIn the peaceful neighbourhood on the Right Bank of the Seine, stands one of the finest Parisian hotels establishing its take on French understated luxury. Its philosophy of ‘home away from home’ lies in an immensely personalised and discreet service, making it ideal for couples. Book the two-bedroom Majestic Suite (US$1,181 upwards per night) that comes with a private terrace and kitchenette, and be left to the comfort of your twosome. leshotelsbaverez.com
Day 11: We booked the Positano shuttle at 7:45AM to take us to Naples Airport. We had a 12Noon flight by EasyJet which was delayed and we ended up reaching Paris CDG airport at 3PM. We checked into our hotel Provinces Opera at 5PM. Unfortunately, the AC in the hotel wasn’t working. We then freshened up and went out to explore Paris. We picked up snacks and walked to River Seine, sat down on the banks of Seine and had a little picnic. We then thought of visiting the Eiffel Tower to see how it looks at night, we reached there around 9:45PM and once we were there the sight of the Eiffel Tower lit up was amazing. The first sight of the enormous structure leaves everyone in awe. It then started twinkling around 10PM for 5 minutes and it looked so pretty. We then headed back to our hotel.Day 12: We bought the 3 day travel pass to travel around Paris. Visited the Louvre, as usual, there was a crowd around the Mona Lisa painting and the rest of the Louvre was quite empty. From there we went to the Catacombs for which we had to stand in the queue for about an hour but was worth it. The eerie feeling of being amidst human Parisien remains was extraordinary. We then headed to Arc de Triomphe, where you have to climb about 284 steps to reach the top. You get an amazing view of Paris from up there. We chilled on top for quite some time and waited for the sun to set and then waited for the Eiffel Tower to light up. It’s amazing to see the Eiffel tower from the top of Arc di Triomphe. We then visited the ever famous Laduree store at Champs Elysees and picked up their macarons and headed to the hotel.
156 Kms from Bellicourt
6. Le Chatelain Boutique Hotel, BrusselsIf a city escape is on your mind, then a five-star in the heart of Brussels should top your list. Le Chatelain is just as fancy as it sounds. With boutique interiors and gourmet cuisine, this hotel knows how to make you feel special.Location: 17 Rue de Châtelain, Elsene / Ixelles, 1000 Brussels, Belgium Tariff: Rs 12,000 for an executive double roomRead More
6. Le Chatelain Boutique Hotel, BrusselsIf a city escape is on your mind, then a five-star in the heart of Brussels should top your list. Le Chatelain is just as fancy as it sounds. With boutique interiors and gourmet cuisine, this hotel knows how to make you feel special.Location: 17 Rue de Châtelain, Elsene / Ixelles, 1000 Brussels, Belgium Tariff: Rs 12,000 for an executive double room
We visited Brussels just for one day.From Amsterdam there are trains and buses to Brussels.If booked early we do have thalys trains which are faster and you get at low rates.Train tickets cost you something between 30-35 Euro one way. If travelling by train just outside Main station you get Hop and hop off buses which has three routes you can choose any or all.They cost you around 23 Euro Per person. Places to visit: 1) Atomium-It comprises nine 18 metre diameter steel spheres connected by tupes, all of which contain exhibits.It looks good from outside.Even surrounding area is pretty good. 2)Mini Europe--Timings are from 10 to 5:Last entry at 4:30.Its just behind the Atomium and lot of chances of you missing it as there are no big hording with its name.We missed it due that . 3)Grand-Place--As we know Brussels famous for their chocolates this square has lot of chocolate shops and Godiva is the famous one among it.You can taste different kind of chocolates. 4)Beer Tours-There are beer tour which takes you different bars from oldest one to the ones which came up recently.for beer tasting.They have fixed timings.So will suggest to book it prior you go there. 5)Chocolate Tours-There are couple of chocolate tour but my suggestion will be book it online before you visit Brussels as there if you ask locals they are not aware about it much and due to that we missed taking tour. 6)Manneken-Pis--I personally didn't find it interesting but its a famous tourist attractions on the tours.Its at such a place that you might not realize that you passed by the tourist attraction. Also you will find the many waffles shops around the city and i tell you.You must try one you get lot of variety with hell lot of toppings over it. My suggestion to whoever travelling on their should plan which all things you need to cover and cover them first and rest of the things if time permits you can go for it.Any walking tour you planning to take up book before hand don't keep it for last moment.It will be much organised.
After several visits in Brussels, I must confess: my trips don’t always involve shopping. I also like to widen my horizons and cultivate myself a bit. Even though Brussels is not a very big city, it has a major role in the European Union and a great history to discover. In general it is quite a young city with a lot going on in terms of exhibitions, art, culture, music… People are open minded, very nice and will make you feel very welcome. If you’re in the Belgian Capital for a short week-end, you should start by taking a walk in the historic centre and enjoy the architecture, the decor and Belgian atmosphere.
139 Kms from Bellicourt
If you've seen the cult dark comedy In Bruges, you know exactly what to expect in this peculiar city. It's a prominent world heritage site according to UNESCO and that automatically makes it a haven for art connoisseurs. It's also called the "Venice of the North" so you can imagine how many new fairytales of your own you can create whilst walking down the cobbled roads to the whitewashed facades of historic churches. Spring is meant for daffodil carpets spread all over the city.Famous for: Beer and art.Things to do: Climb up the 366 stairs of the medieval Belfry Tower. Admire the flemish primitive artworks at Groeninge Museum.Weather in January: Average temperature is 5 degrees celsius. Remains dry, but nippy.Average budget per head for 5 days (excluding flights): Rs. 62,000For more details, read this.Read More
If you've seen the cult dark comedy In Bruges, you know exactly what to expect in this peculiar city. It's a prominent world heritage site according to UNESCO and that automatically makes it a haven for art connoisseurs. It's also called the "Venice of the North" so you can imagine how many new fairytales of your own you can create whilst walking down the cobbled roads to the whitewashed facades of historic churches. Spring is meant for daffodil carpets spread all over the city.Famous for: Beer and art.Things to do: Climb up the 366 stairs of the medieval Belfry Tower. Admire the flemish primitive artworks at Groeninge Museum.Weather in January: Average temperature is 5 degrees celsius. Remains dry, but nippy.Average budget per head for 5 days (excluding flights): Rs. 62,000For more details, read this.
We spent half a day walking around the quaint town of Bruges. Canals, Buildings and Chocolates. Visit the chocolate musuem - a little boring though :P
Peter, our driver and guide for the day, greeted us with a smile and we set out on our day long trip. The onward journey was boring, people slept mostly. Peter passed us a packet of home-made honey cookies that he must have brought for himself and which we readily devoured. I was in love with the first sight of Bruges or ‘Bru-ha’ as Peter called it. A famous movie ‘In Bruges’ was shot here. I haven’t seen the movie before but made sure I did once I got back. Bruges to me was a representation of Ancient Europe. The place where we got down was a lane that leads to the Bruges Centrum. On both sides of this lane are buildings as old as 15 Th centuries. The Bruges centrum is a very colorful place. Well I don’t know how to write it, what to describe but just that I was awestruck, time stopped for me, it was so beautiful that in the 3rd day of this tour, I decided I have seen enough, what is left to see after this. There were people sitting on the stairs, group of musicians siting in a corner and making music. This is again something that is true to all European cities, its musicians. The centrum has an old fort and a historium. A historium is a museum that tells you the history of that place. We took a video tour of the museum in 10E. It was pretty expensive but still we thought of giving it a try. After having spent enough time at the city center and buying collectibles from the shops around we moved towards the famous canal ride of Bruges that more than us Peter was excited about. n between we sneaked into one of the coffee shops and had the most amazing thing in the world, the Belgian waffle! Yummy is the word. The ride cost is 17E but left us very happy. Beautiful houses as old as 14th or 15th century were lined up on two sides of the lane. The slow moving boat cruising the canal, the murmur of the boat guide telling stories about the place, the natural beauty around left me spellbound and I never wanted it to get over. But all good things come to an end and so did the canal ride and our stay in Bruges.