Driving Inspiration: Belgium

Driving Inspiration: Belgium

Destinations and ideas for driving holidays in Belgium. LeShuttle is the quickest, easiest and greenest way to travel to Belgium.

Bruges is one of the closest cities to our terminal in Calais. Often called the ‘Venice of the North’, its winding canals and medieval buildings make Bruges a picture-perfect destination for a continental weekend break.
48 hours in Bruges

48 hours in Bruges

  • Beautiful Bruges
    With its lazily looping canal, cobbled streets and historic architecture, Bruges is a perennially popular destination for anyone crossing the Channel looking for a weekend away. It is one of the most picturesque and best preserved medieval cities in Northern Europe, rich in history, art and delicious things to eat and drink.
  • Driving to Bruges
    Bruges is just 72 miles from our Calais terminal. It usually takes just under an hour and a half to drive there, taking the A16 and E40 roads via Dunkirk. The bonus of driving straight into Belgium is that you will not have to pay any tolls. It is an ideal first time destination if you have never driven in France or Belgium before.
    Read more about driving in Belgium

The best of Bruges in two days

Bruges is a small city, with most of the sights within easy walking distance. With it so close to the LeShuttle terminal at Calais, you really can fit it all into a weekend. Here’s our guide to the best things to do in Bruges in 48 hours. 

Markt Square

The Markt or market square is the beating heart of Bruges. Towering over the huge piazza is the 83-metre high Belfort, one of the most recognisable of all the UNESCO-listed belfries of Belgium and France. The square is lined with restaurants, bars and cafés, and is where many guided tours of the city begin.

For a romantic canter around Bruges why not take one of the horse-drawn cabs that leave from here? Elsewhere on the Markt you will find the Historium, a fascinating museum that uses VR to give visitors a sense of the sights, sounds and smells of medieval Bruges. 


Numerous artists have made the city their home across the centuries. Notable residents include master painter Jan van Eyck, whose works can be found at the Groeningemuseum, along with other celebrated Flemish and Belgian painters. The fine art collection stretches from 15th-century ‘Flemish Primitives’ to Renaissance and Baroque masters. It’s a must for any art-lover. 

Canal boat ride

It may feel like a cliché, but taking a boat tour along the canals of Bruges just has to be on your to-do list. You experience Bruges as many people would have done through history, bringing goods in and out of the city, past the beautiful gables and spires and underneath the flower-draped bridges. 

There are no shortage of boat tour companies and embarkation points, and canal boat trips last about 40 minutes. 

Climb the Belfort

Dominating the skyline, the bell tower is one of the city’s most prominent symbols. 366 steeply winding steps lead to the viewing platform at the top of the tower, which offers an unparalleled view across the rooftops of Bruges. 

The belfry was originally built in the 13th century and has been remodelled over the centuries following fires. Today it contains 47 bells of varying sizes, regularly used for performances by the in-house bellringer.

Take a brewery tour

After climbing the belfry, you will have worked up quite a thirst! Belgium’s beers are some of the finest in the world, and Bruges has more than its fair share of notable breweries. 

We highly recommend a tour of De Halve Maan, right in the centre of the city on the Walplein, a site where they have been brewing continuously for 500 years. You will get a fascinating insight into the brewing process and be able to take in stunning views of the city from the top of the building. Of course you round off your tour by tasting some of the brewery’s best beers. 

Your Bruges weekend starts with LeShuttle

The charming streets of Bruges are only a few hours away with LeShuttle. The crossing from Folkestone to Calais takes just 35 minutes. Do it all with a Short Stay Saver ticket!  

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Flanders fast food

Frites and mayonnaise is something of a Belgian speciality, and they are rather proud of their chips in Flanders. So much so that there is even a Frietmuseum in Bruges – ‘the first and only museum dedicated to potato fries’. 

Waffles are the other famous Belgian fast food, and for a truly authentic waffle, buy them from one of the vans in Burg Square, either plain or with melted chocolate, whipped cream, ice cream or fresh fruit, or a combination of them all. Yum!