Benelux, the name for Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg is an amazing place. It’s full of history, scenery, and lots of fun. This is a 20 day itinerary exploring the very best of Benelux.
I’ll start with super basic itinerary, then list the best things to do, and then some hotels. I’ll also tell you about the places in the itinerary, in case you didn’t know.
Note: If you don’t have enough time (most people don’t have a whole 20 days for vacation, break this itinerary down into your favorite parts, maybe just choosing a particular country.)
- Day 1- Arrive in Amsterdam, and explore
- Day 2- Amsterdam
- Day 3- Amsterdam
- Day 4- Morning and lunch in Amsterdam, then take a 40 minute train to Leiden, and spend the day there
- Day 5- Leiden
- Day 6- Go to the Hague (it’s super close by, so transportation shouldn’t be difficult)
- Day 7- The Hague (and if you have time, you can take a quick pop by Rotterdam)
- Day 8: Take a train or a bus to Antwerp, Belgium in the morning, then explore
- Day 9: Antwerp
- Day 10: Take a train from Antwerp to Bruges, one of the most famous towns in Belgium
- Day 11-Bruges
- Day 12- Bruges
- Day 13- Take a train to Ghent and explore
- Day 14- Ghent
- Day 15- Train to Brussels and explore
- Day 16- Brussels
- Day 17- Brussels
- Day 18- Train to Luxembourg and explore
- Day 19- Luxembourg City
- Day 20- Luxembourg City, take a flight back.
City Search: Amsterdam, Leiden, The Hague, Antwerp, Bruges, Ghent, Brussels, and Luxembourg City.
Amsterdam is the capital city of the Netherlands, and is home to 827,000 people, as well as incredible history, food, and architecture.
Things to do in Amsterdam:
- Rijksmuseum- An art museum that houses many famous works of European art.
- The Anne Frank House- The House of the world famous Anne Frank, a girl during World War II who kept a diary of her experiences.
- Van Gogh Museum- this museum has the largest collection of Van Gogh pieces in the world.
- Vondelpark- the Vondelpark is a gigantic park with an open air cinema.
- Rembrandt House Museum- A Dutch 17th century house
- Royal Palace- the name speaks for itself, honestly.
- NEMO Science Museum- One of the most fun things to do in Amsterdam, NEMO is a waterfont science museum.
- Stedelijk Museum- A famous museum of contemporary art
Some hotels in Amsterdam:
- Budget: The Alfred Hotel– An amazing value-for-money hotel with a beautiful exterior and in an amazing location.
- Mid Range: Hotel Estherea– 4 star, but affordable hotel with amazing, classic decorations and in a super central area.
- Luxury: Waldorf Astoria Hotel and Spa– A Hilton hotel with an awesome location and beautiful rooms. The area is awesome as well; this is a great luxury pick.
Leiden is known for its old architecture and for Leiden University, which is the country’s oldest. It is definitely overlooked by most people, but it is truly a gem, and you can’t miss out on it.
Things to do in Leiden:
- Hortus Bontanicus Leiden: A botanical garden complete with a cafe, definitely a must see.
- National Museum of Antiquities- A museum containing Greek, Egyptian, and Roman relics.
- National Museum of Ethnology- Historic museum of cultures across the world.
- Naturalis Biodiversity Center- Fun natural history center
- Burcht Van Leiden- A park with remains of a medieval castle.
Some hotels in Leiden:
- Budget: The Flying Pig Beach Hostel Noorwdjik– This hostel is actually in a nearby beach town. It’s rooms are whimsically decorated and it’s right on the beach.
- Mid Range: Rembrandt Hotel Leiden– This hotel’s location is amazing, it’s literally in the exact center of Leiden. The rooms are tastefully decorated with and everything is super clean.
- Luxury: Grand Hotel Huis ter Duin– This large hotel is in the same town, Noorwdjik, as the budget hotel, and it’s also right on the beach. The rooms are nicely decorated, but if you have a beach view room, the views are amazing.
The Hague is a major city in the Netherlands, the capital of South Holland. It is home to the Dutch Seat of Parliament and the U.N.’s International Court of Justice. The overall city is very beautiful, and definitely a must-visit.
Things to do in The Hague:
- Madurodam- A large park with models of Dutch cities
- Binnenhof- the place where you can go one tours of the waterfront Dutch Parliament
- Mauritshuis- collection of Golden Age Dutch paintings
- Duinrell- An amusement park
- Scheveningen Pier- A waterfront area with lots of food and activities
- Kuntsmuseum Den Haag- Modern art museum
- Panorama mesdag- 360 degree works of art
- Escher in Het Paleis- An old palace with graphic art
Some hotels in The Hague:
- Budget: StayOkay The Hague– This hostel has free breakfast and clean, comfortable rooms. I would really recommend this.
- Mid Range: Hotel Indigo The Hague Palace Noordeinde– An affordable, clean hotel in the center of The Hague.
- Luxury: (To be honest there are really any, but if anyone knows one, make sure to comment it down below)
Antwerp is known as the diamond capital, and diamonds are (and have always been) an important role of the economy of the city. You can actually get better quality diamonds for cheaper than other places in Antwerp, but as always, watch out for scammers.
Things to do in Antwerp:
- The Rubens House- Former mansion
- Museum aan de Stroom- Modern museum showing the city’s history
- Cathedral of Our Lady Antwerp- Iconic 1300’s structure with famous art by Rubens
- ZOO Antwerpen- Animal park since 1843
- Antwerp City Hall- Renaissance structure with tours.
Some hotels in Antwerp:
- Budget: YUST– A modern hotel with proper amenities and in the center of Antwerp.
- Mid Range: Park Inn by Radisson Antwerp Berchem– Affordable hotel with a restaurant and clean, decorated rooms. Highly recommend.
- Luxury: Hilton Antwerp Old Town– Fancy hotel with beautiful rooms and lots of special amenities.
Bruges, one of the most famous cities in Belgium and probably the most famous tourist destination, is also called Venice of the North, because of all of its canals and bridges. It is very beautiful, and also super historical as well.
Things to do in Bruges:
- Markt- A famous plaza with lots of places to eat
- Church of Our lady Bruges- A church with Michelangelo Art
- Belfry of Bruges- An old bell tower in the main square
- Basilica of the Holy Blood- church and pilgrimage area with a famous relic.
- Choco- Story- A chocolate museum with a shop.
- Bruges City Hall- A city hall from the 1300’s that also has a museum
Some hotels in Bruges:
- Budget: Charlie Rockets– A nice, casual hotel with a restaurant.
- Mid Range: The Black Swan Hotel– Very nice, welcoming exterior with cozy rooms.
- Luxury: Hotel Heritage– A famous, fancily decorated hotel in Bruges with lots of amenities.
Ghent, famous for its markets and squares is a very classic place to visit. It has so much to do, with its medieval monasteries and pretty streets.
Things to do in Ghent:
- Gravensteen- A 1100’s castle with a moat surrounding it
- Het Belfort van Gent- 14th century watch tower
- Saint Nicolas’ Church- Gothic church with artistic interior
- Korenmarkt- historic square with famous buildings
- Saint Bavo’s Cathedral- 10th century cathedral
- Museum voor Schone Kunsten- An amazingly decoated art museum.
Some hotels in Ghent:
- Budget: KABA Hostel– This hostel has nice cozy rooms, great breakfast, and is in a great location.
- Mid Range: Charme Hotel Hancelot– A hotel with amazingly decorated rooms on the edge of Ghent.
- Luxury: Ghent Marriott Hotel– Top-rated hotel in the center of Ghent with river views, pretty rooms, dining, and breakfast.
Brussels is the capital of Belgium, and though it is a very popular tourist destination, it is sometimes overlooked. It is full of unique art and architecture.
Things to do in Brussels:
- Grote markt- the main market square of Brussels
- Manneken Pis- An iconic 17th century statue
- Atomium- A well known, huge sculpture depicting an atom
- Royal Palace of Brussels- (speaks for itself)
- Parc di Cinquantenaire- A large city park with military museums.
- Mini-Europe- A mini park with famous European attractions (Like the Eiffel Tower and the Big Ben)
- Royal Gallery of Saint Hubert- A fancy market place known for its glass ceiling.
Some hotels in Brussels:
- Budget: Menininger Hotel Bruxelles City Center– A nice, popular hotel with clean rooms in the center of Brussels.
- Mid Range: Warwick Brussels– Nice, comfortable hotel with a fancy restaurant.
- Luxury: Hotel Amigo – Top rated, 5 star hotel with a spa and a nice restaurant.
Luxembourg City is the capital of Luxembourg and known as Europe’s most powerful investment management center. The country itself is very beautiful, but it’s so small, there isn’t much else to say. Luxembourg is also the world’s 2nd wealthiest country.
Things to do in Luxembourg City:
- Cathedrale Notre Dame- cathedral built in the 17th century
- Palais Grand-Ducal- the palace of Grand Duke
- Adolphe Bridge- Iconic stone bridge from the 1900’s
- Grand Duke Jean Museum of Modern Art- Outdoor sculptures and modern art
- Monument of Remembrance- War memorial with a golden statue on top
- Fort Thungen- old fort with museums
- Place Guillaume II- large medieval square
Some hotels in Luxembourg City:
- Budget: Hotel Bistrol– A clean 2 star hotel in a nice location a 10 minute walk from the city center.
- Mid Range: Grand Hotel Cravat– Affordable, comfortable in Luxembourg City. It has dining and breakfast.
- Luxury: Sofitel Luxembourg Le Grande Ducal– A fancy hotel in Luxembourg City that’s top rated and has amazing dining and breakfast.
Thanks for reading and hope you enjoyed! If you have any feedback, make sure to comment below!
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