We both really enjoyed this short break to Bruges. Riviera's organisation was excellent, no detail overlooked. Walking tour of the City was very well thought out. Chris our tour guide knew her subject exceedingly well. The headset receivers used worked very well indeed. Giving one a bit of freedom to take photos etc., yet still hearing what Chris was telling us. Day to Ypres/Passchendaele/Flanders was very thought provoking. And the artisan chocolate shop tour was great. What a character he is! The last day probably highlighted why we use Riviera. French Immigration staff were taking industrial action. There was a risk we'd get delayed departing Lille. Riviera were monitoring the situation & seamlessly switched our Eurostar departure to Brussels. No delays, no issues at all. We'd like to say a big thank you to Chris our guide who is wonderful. And to Riviera for your unique customer service.
Review by: Mr & Mrs McJannet on 24/03/2019
I have just returned from the Riviera city break to Bruges. The tour was really well organised as usual, and the hotel was in a fantastic location and had a really lovely breakfast, you would not have thought it was only a 3 star. The activities that were not included in the price were very good value so you didn't worry about having to pay the extra. Pete was our tour guide and he was really friendly and made us laugh, he was very good company and sat and chatted with us in the evenings and really cheered us up. Pete was very well organised but also very calm and relaxed. This was a brilliant introduction to Bruges and would highly recommend for someone who has never been before but was thinking they might like to. Looking forward to booking our next Riviera break!
Review by: Geri Ottewell on 10/03/2019
Returned from a wonderful tour in Bruges last week. The tour manager, Angus was exceptional. His knowledge and passion for this tour was superb. This tour had been recommended to me and my wife and I finally booked. So glad that I did and we are now looking at booking Paris for the Spring.
Review by: Martin Leach on 25/11/2018
We have not travelled with Riviera Travel before but we will certainly do so in the future. The arrangements were perfect and the tour manager Noel was perfect. Having the freedom to join the prepared tours or use our own itinerary was perfect. The hotel was just right and the staff there exceedingly helpful. The arranged tours were beneficial especially the trip to the Menin Gate and Tyne Cot Cemetery. Noel's recommendations of where to eat and what to see and do were spot on. We will be recommending Riviera Travel to friends and family; absolutely superb.
Review by: Martin Edwards& Marie on 05/11/2018
Brilliant trip. We were so well looked after by Pete, who thought of everything and gave us so much information. Terrific guide. The new system of earphones meant that on our walking trip we could hear everything he said to us and no-one got left behind. The Hotel Academie was in a quiet little street, with small restaurants nearby, and only ten minutes walk from the main square. Super hotel with amazing buffet breakfasts. The trips were very good too, and thank you Christophe, our excellent driver. Very good value indeed. This is our third Riviera trip and we'll be back for another.
Review by: Rowena Gardner on 04/11/2018
Would just like to say this was one of the most delightful trips I've had the pleasure to take, largely because Diane, the guide, put so much into making it work for everyone in the group.
What a professional, conscientious and charming Lady she is.
I've been impressed by the guides on all three holidays I've taken with Riviera, but this last one was totally stress free as she seemed able to think one step ahead.
Emotional... and wonderful.
Review by: Mick E. on 10/10/2018
This is the first time we have used Riviera Travel and it wont be the last.The tour was well organised with excellent guides in Bruges but our UK Manger Kay was brilliant. She had a good sense of fun and was very informative. The trip was worth everything we paid for.
Review by: Gaynor White on 02/09/2018
My wife and I have recently returned from the Bruges tour, our third tour with Riviera and definitely not our last. As always, well organised and efficient, from booking and issue of travel documents through to the management of the tour itself. In Viv, we had an excellent and attentive guide, who is a Briton but who has spent many years in Flanders and so has excellent local knowledge and is fluent in Flemish as well as English. Nothing seemed to be too much trouble for her. The Martin's hotel was in an excellent location and generally comfortable. Only criticism was that the aircon in our room did not seem to be functioning properly which wasn't ideal with daytime temperatures in the high 20s.
Review by: Peter Ainsworth on 22/07/2018
My husband Andrew, and I have just returned from our first trip with Riviera, we would just like to say what a great time we had . The hotel Academia was superbly located and there was an amazing choice at breakfast. Pete our tour guide was very friendly, helpful and knowledgeable and made sure our tours ran smoothly each day. The only thing we were disappointed in was the tight time schedules for the tours, it would have been nice to have spent longer in each place to be able to appreciate it properly. We will certainly travel with Riviera again and would highly recommend them to our friends and family.
Review by: Kathleen Ann Marks on 17/06/2018
Just a line to say how much I enjoyed the recent trip to Bruges. Kay, our guide, was untiring in her efforts to make our visit as rewarding as possible besides being a delightful person so thanks to her.
You might mention in the accompanying literature that, by and large, credit cards are not welcomed in Bruges and advise visitors to therefore take Euros.
Review by: Pat Spencer on 14/05/2018
An amazing 4 day break to Bruges and Ypres. From our being met by Annette on the Eurostar to our departure 4 days later everything was perfect. Annette was so friendly, professional and knowledgeable, it made the holiday even more perfect for myself and twin sister who were celebrating our 60th birthday. Lovely also to meet new friends on the coach journey from Lille to Bruges and also when we were out and about. Bruno our driver also deserves a mention, great driving. The Hotel, Martin's Bruges could not have been more central just behind the belfry and square. Modern rooms, fantastic breakfast, bar and reception area. First evening time to unpack and find somewhere to eat. Plenty of eating places in and around the square. On day 2 the walking tour excellent. Annette showed us so many wonderful and interesting places in the 2 hour tour. Pointing out places for us to go back and see in our own time. Highly recommended was the chocolate shop/café for the best hot chocolate ever. The boat trip on the canal fabulous. Beer wall, museums, churches and café/restaurants great. Day 3 a lovely early walk to the coach and then off to Tyne Cot Cemetery. A must especially as we arrived early and the atmosphere is very special. On to Ypres. Another emotive place. From the Menin Gate to the Silk Hall. A light lunch before back on the coach to the Passchendaele Memorial Museum. What an amazing tour through the trenches and museum and gardens. After a wonderful day a great drive back to Bruges and again time to ourselves. On our final day the trip to the Chocolate demonstration brilliant ending with a tasting and time to buy. Back to the hotel to finish packing before a final look round the centre of Bruges, lunch and on to the coach for our trip back to Lille. All we can say is fabulous time and would definitely recommend it.
Review by: Dawn Devitt on 25/04/2018
Dear Riviera, Our holiday was very good. Dave our guide was excellent, very helpful and informative. The brewery visit was hilarious, the guides delivery was spot on. The chocolate making demonstration was good, although a little too warm. Our visit to Tyn Cot cemetery was successful in as much as my wife located her relatives. The two museums were very good, The Flanders Fields Museum had a lot of interesting information and some very good videos which gave good insight into the conditions and how the soldiers were affected by their experiences. Our last day was taken up visiting the Church of Our Lady, a very impressive church and a visit to the Groningen Museum. The audio guide accompanying the manuscript exhibition was excellent. The Flemish art on display was also very interesting. Tom Sullivan
Review by: Tom Sullivan on 25/03/2018
Did this same trip 9 years ago. The Academie Hotel has really smartened up since then and was found to be very comfortable, excellent breakfast and friendly and helpful staff.
The tour manager, Diane, was excellent throughout. Her "narrative" en-route was very smooth and informative, she could not have been more helpful.
The only adverse comment concerned the absolute chaos that prevailed at Eurostar Lille for the return trip - out of the hands of Riviera and Diane of course!
Review by: Whybro on 08/04/2018
This is the first tour I have done ever as we usually make our own arrangements. I took my daughter with me and we were very happy with everything. Our Tour Guide was Pete and he couldn't have been more helpful. Martin's Hotel is excellent. Bruges is a beautiful city with so much to do that I will have to go again - with Riviera - to continue exploring. Trips are optional and there is something for everyone, we just went on the city tour, the canals and the chocolatiere, and then explored the city under our own steam. Easy, smooth transfers.
Review by: Liz Baddman on 08/11/2017
Thank you very much for a super short break in Bruges. The Martinsbrugge Hotel was excellent, so central, and provided a generous varied selection for breakfast. Diane was a superb, enthusiastic guide, who knows so much about Bruges, its history and culture. She organised everything brilliantly. This will certainly not be the last short trip we take with Riviera.
Review by: Marion Slade on 11/10/2017
Wonderful trip, good hotel and brilliant tour manager Pete. Very well organised and content was excellent, just remember the comfy shoes for the cobbled streets.
Review by: June Day on 20/09/2017
Just returned from Bruges stopping in Hotel Academia.
Pete the tour manager was superb, pointing out all the sites and recommending place to visit and places to eat.
Hotel comfortable and clean excellent buffet breakfast.
Bruges is well worth a visit
Review by: Roger Meakins on 20/09/2017
Just returned from a short break to bruges staying at the hotel Academie . I cannot fault holiday at all . The hotel certainly deserves its 4 star rating the bedrooms very clean and comfortable , the staff friendly and efficient and breakfast choice was to die for.The whole trip was very well organised and made all the more excellant by the tour manager Peter who was brilliant.This was our first trip with Riviera but it won't be the last.
Review by: Jennings on 23/09/2017
Just got back from a lovely holiday to Bruges.We stayed a the Academie Hotel which was first class. Could not fault it. Rooms were lovely and breakfasts where to die for. Tour guide Peter was excellent, very informative top marks
Review by: G M Walker on 20/09/2017
First time I've used Riviera Travel for solo travellers and have just returned from a wonderful trip to Bruges. Was apprehensive travelling alone so thought I'd ease into it with a short break. Needn't have worried - was so impressed with how well organised it was; great hotel, good group of very friendly people and our lovely tour guide, Angus, really made it memorable. Will definitely be booking again - for a longer trip!
Review by: Julia Parry on 13/09/2017
Just a quick note to say 'Thank You' to our tour manager Angus for making my first solo holiday so enjoyable. Great fellow travellers, lovely hotel and such an interesting and varied tour. No hesitation in booking another trip.
Review by: Antony Charles Vowles on 13/09/2017
What a fantastic break!!! Beautiful city beautiful food and the hotel was fantastic. The whole trip was incredibly smooth from start to finish. I would like to add that our tour guide, Dave, made the whole trip even more enjoyable with his broad knowledge of the area and his nothing is too much trouble attitude. Will definitely be travelling again with you.
Review by: Stephen Howes on 09/08/2017
We had a very pleasant few days in Bruges recently. 3 nights at the Academie Hotel, walking tour around Bruges, trip to Ypres and Tynecot Cemetary, chocolate making demonstration plus optional brewery tour, canal trip and First World War museum experiences. Despite the rain which no one could do anything about, everything was well organised and ran smoothly. Dave, our tour manager, was pleasant, informative about where to eat and drink in Bruges and very knowledgeable on the walking tour and trip to Ypres. We took his advice and visited St George's Church in Ypres which was so moving and interesting. We first made his acquaintance on the Eurostar to Lille and he was always accessible throughout.
Review by: Hazel Godwin on 09/08/2017
Diana, our Tour Manager, was really great. She knew her stuff! She looked after our group very well, informing us all about the places we were to visit, restaurants etc., in Bruges, safety issues, well just everything really. We were very happy with her. Martins Hotel in Bruges is in a fabulous location - right next to the Belfry, the main square and the canals. Very comfortable and helpful, efficient staff. We enjoyed our included excursions. Everything went like clockwork. We will certainly be travelling with Riviera again, hopefully many times. Thanks to all concerned.
Review by: Sue Millward on 16/07/2017
A most enjoyable holiday break. Our hotel, the Casselbergh, was excellent and got us off to good start. Our Tour guide, Peter, deserves much of the credit for our enjoyment of Bruges. He organised us so well and his in-depth knowledge of Bruges and the included trips ensured that we were kept busy and interested throughout. A bonus was Peter's restaurant recommendations, all of which were excellent.
Review by: Maurice Dunford on 09/07/2017
My wife Lyn & I chose a break in Bruges for our 46th Wedding Anniversary, staying at the Grand Hotel Casselberg two minutes from the central Market Square, perfect! The Hotel was luxury itself and we were lucky enough to be accommodated in the Historical part of this beautiful Hotel in this beautiful part of Belgium.
The staff were very friendly and attentive and the breakfast availability was enough to set you up for the whole day with all tastes catered for, the Restaurant being modern, airy and spacious.
There were plenty of interesting trips included, but the most sobering has to be the visits to Tyne Cot Cemetery, the Passchendaele Museum, the Memin Gate and the St. George’s Memorial Church in Ypres, bringing home the futility of War.
Our Representative/Guide was Peter who was very friendly, very knowledgeable - without being intrusive - and looked after us all throughout. If I may, I would like to make one constructive comment. Peter imparted so much knowledge on the way to our Ypres trip that it was very difficult to digest and remember all the facts he imparted and there were many of them. May I respectfully suggest that a “Handout” would be beneficial to all your Clients on this Tour, which could be read after the Tour and retained for future consultation when the facts could be better digested and understood.
Thank you Riviera for a lovely break it was excellent value for money and hopefully we will be back.
David & Lyn Chester – Seaford. East Sussex.
Review by: David S. Chester on 09/07/2017
Having travelled with Riviera once before, we knew that we would have a well- organised and interesting tour. We were not disappointed! Our guide Pete was well- informed and very helpful and his recommendations for places to eat were spot on. The organised events were interesting and, in the case of the Ypres/Tyne Cot day, thought provoking. We had plenty of time to explore on our own too. We will definitely be using Riviera again.
Review by: Rosemary Duffy on 20/06/2017
What a great trip, well organised full of interesting excursions. Our gang of 10 would like to thank Pete for looking after us , we all enjoyed ourselves, The trip to Tyne Cott and the museums was most moving, in contrast the trip around the brewery was one long laugh. All of us look forward to our next trip with you guys. Regards Colin
Review by: Colin Parry on 11/06/2017
We had an excellent trip - thank you. We would especially like to thank our tour guide, Dave, who was so helpful and knowledgable.
Review by: Sarah Linklett on 14/05/2017
We have this week been on a trip to Bruges with your company and would just like to express our gratitude to all of your staff in this connection and in particular Dave our tour guide Dave was able to fit in an extra stop on route so that my wife and I could view the grave of my great grandfather who lost his life in the first world war and was buried at the South Men in Cemetery.
We were absolutely amazed at the dedication and care to attention that Dave and Pierre his driver took through out our holiday We will definitely be singing your praises to all family and friends and of course we won't hesitate to book again with you and its not hard to see why you have won so many awards over your rivals.
Review by: Steve and Christine Wearing on 14/05/2017
My wife and I took the Bruges Tour and were delighted for many reasons. Among these was the very friendly and knowledgeable Pete our tour guide, the comfortable hotel room, a good balance of organized events and free time and finally the excellent value of this trip. This being our first experience with Riviera we now look forward to future trips with this company.
Review by: Martin Holford on 10/06/2017
Just back from a 4 day trip to Bruges. Everything from the trains to hotel were excellent. We we met on Eurostar by our Courier Dave who gave us a quick itinerary of our holiday and where we would be getting picked up when we arrived in Lille. The Hotel Academie was an excellent hotel and once we got our bearings was very well sited. The breakfast here was one of the best I have ever had and the rooms very comfortable. The walking tour was very interesting and the pace was not too fast. Dave showed us an excellent cafe where we had the famous hot chocolate accompanied by small chocolates! A trip to the brewery was interesting and I even managed to 240 steps. Would recommend the food here it was very tasty and went well with the beer. Missed the first museum but got more time in Ypres visiting the cathedral and St George's memorial church before going into Flanders Museum. On our last day we did the chocolate making tour before finishing our last minute shopping and lunch and then home. Everything was very well timed and no very early starts which often spoil a holiday. Thanks to Dave and Riviera for a very enjoyable holiday I am sure I will be booking another tour with you.
Review by: Pam Hogg on 04/06/2017
First ever tour and first holiday without the kids in over 30 years. Really enjoyable, interesting with thanks to Norman who helped make it such a success. Grand hotel casselbergh worth the additional cost to have such lovely surroundings. Will use your company again.
Review by: Jackie & Don on 28/05/2017
We've just returned from a great trip to Bruges and although we are normally independent travellers, enjoyed the good organization and the various included trips and activities. What made the trip outstanding, however, was our Tour Manager Dave. He is a mine of information second to none on Bruges, the history, the people, the language, and also on WW I events in Belgium - from facts and figures all at his fingertips, to stories and amusing anecdotes. Dave made our trip truly memorable.
Review by: Werner Gattiker on 14/05/2017
Just got back from yet another fantastic well organised trip with Riviera ,The trip to Bruges was first class, from the moment that I booked it was excellent all the way ,Our Tour manager Diane couldn't do enough for you, she was full of knowledge, and explained everything , the Hotel Academie was very nice with a lovely breakfast you were spoilt for choice, on top of that it is right in the centre of Bruges so very accessible ,the trips were excellent too, with Ypres, Passchendaele, and Tyne Cot Cemetery, a must see /visit, the visit to the Halvemaan Brewery was also good and the tour guide was a scream she was very funny and made the tour. All in all an excellent trip .
Review by: Mr Adrian Fudge on 07/05/2017
My wife and myself have just returned from a trip to Bruges.
We would like to take this opportunity to thank you for a wonderful holiday and experience. The 4 days went very well and was truly magnificent, Bruges is a great place and we will definitely return with Riviera. The Hotel Academie was first class. The tour manager Sue was very helpful and did a great job, she was excellent. Bruno the driver was great. Please pass our thanks to both Sue and Bruno
Once again thank you very much.
Review by: Peter and Barbara Burke on 26/03/2017
Had a great three-day trip to Bruges. Journey started on Eurostar from St.Pancras - our guide Anette - introduced herself to us (all) and let us know exactly where to go on arrival in Lille and to get our coach to Bruges, thanks to her guidance and watchful eye went smoothly. Found Anette a friendly, excellent and informative guide for all our excursions.
The first day tour to Tyne Cot Cemetery, Passendale Museum and the town of Ypres went very well - of course a sobering and reflective day in these places but informative.
Day two - walkabout - Anette certainly knew a lot about the History of Bruges which made the excursion come alive for us. We were informed enough to visit those places which caught our eye more thoroughly once the tour ended. Also had an organised trip on the canal boat which showed another aspect of this small but beautiful city.
Day 3 - Chocolate Shop Demo - early start and a bit colder this day. However, a tasting of some strong, healthy chocolate would perk us all up! Fascinating demo of how this confection is created and a very amusing Owner/creator. Prices competitive and did not feel they were expensive for the product. Visited the Wednesday Market in the centre and bought some local cheese, strawberries and fresh bread - ate our lunch it in the small park near to the canal and eventually wandered back to our Hotel for the trip home. This too went very well and good guidance at Eurostar Lille.
Hotel - The Golden Tree - comfortable beds,clean linen and room, hot water in shower. Lots selection for breakfast. No tea/coffee making facilities in room but one can take small kettle and own tea etc. Easy to get to and from the centre of the town.
Can highly recommend this trip and hotel - also Anette as a guide - would expect her knowledge and preparation of any trip is thoroughly researched and passed on to her "passengers".
Review by: Elizabeth Hardwick on 26/03/2017
We have just returned from the Bruges tour which we thoroughly enjoyed. Our guide, Pete, was extremely knowledgeable and helpful. He gave us a brief 30 minute walk on the evening of arrival just to orientate us in the town, and was available throughout the break to assist with any questions. We would recommend this tour to anyone wanting a short and interesting break.
Review by: Peter and Sue Hawes on 23/10/2016
Just got home from Bruges after a wonderful four day stay. All of the arrangements went like clockwork and the tour guide (Sue) was brilliant.
Thoroughly enjoyed all of the excursions, but was particularly taken by the visit to Hill 62, which was so different to the clinical exhibits of the In Flanders Fields Museum in Ypres. This was our third holiday with Riviera Travel and we plan to book again next year. Many thanks to all Riviera Travel staff.
Review by: John, Jackie, Paul and Lorraine Williams on 21/10/2016
Having never been on an organised tour before I wanted you to know how much we enjoyed the experience. The hotel was lovely and the organisation 5*. Chris the tour guide was helpful, approachable and a credit to your company. The coach driver Ivan went out of his way to ensure that everything ran smoothly.
The only disappointment was that we feel we did not have enough time in Ypes. To see the town and Flanders fields you need at least 6 hours. Thankyou again
Review by: Pamela Welby on 14/10/2016
Recently returned from Bruges which was my first experience with RivieraTravel and have to say it was an amazing experience. Our tour guide Kay was wonderful. She looked after us extremely well. I will certainly have no hesitation travelling with you in the future.
Review by: Brenda Clayton on 11/10/2016
Thank you for arranging the above trip. Although I was meeting a group of friends and did not take up the excursion/ activities provided I found Riviera Travel very efficient and pleasant to deal with.
The tour manager was also very good. I will certainly take advantage of your services in the future and recommend your company to friends and family. I was speaking to a couple of friends in my party who had been on trips arranged by you and they were fulsome in their praise.
Review by: John Andrews on 21/09/2016
Having just returned from Bruges. It was for us, a fantastic holiday, in a place we had never visited before, and I am sure we will return. We stayed at the Golden Tree Hotel, a clean and friendly family run hotel. The inclusive tours arranged on our behalf were really good. The visit to Ypres, Hill 62 and Tyne Cot were for us, one of the most informative and interesting tours. Please keep them a feature for any future trips. A special note of thanks to Sue, our courier on this holiday. She was just great. Her insider knowledge and informative commentary made this holiday even better. We will be back with Riviera soon.
Review by: Mr & Mrs Stevens on 25/09/2016
My husband and I have just arrived back from our 3 day trip to Bruges. We had a lovely time, Bruges was such a quaint little place, so easy to find your way around. We stayed in the Martins Bruge Hotel which could not have been more central for everything. Lovely little bar and very good choice at breakfast, you could even squeeze your own oranges in the morning for breakfast. Our tour manager Pete was brilliant and extremely knowledgable and helpful. Would highly recommend this trip.
Review by: Pam and Alan Lucas on 18/09/2016
We both would like to compliment your Company in connection with our recent holiday. Viv, our tour guide, was always there with her helpful, friendly, caring and extremely knowledgeable self. She is such an asset to your company. The hotel was so well situated. Very clean, comfy beds and good size room and helpful cheery staff. Breakfast was superb with such an excellent choice and even freshly pressed orange juice. We liked the daily chocolate left in our room each day - such a nice touch!
Only one criticism and that concerned our trip to Ypres. We feel Ypres, Hill 62 and Tyne Cot needed a full day.
With best wishes,
Review by: Margot Simmonds and Derek Yardley on 09/09/2016
Just back from 3 night break with your company, very good Hotel, and very good staff to look after everybody. Keep up the good work.
Review by: Anne & Phil Bowers on 02/09/2016
Have just returned last Saturday (25th of June 2016) from a break in Bruges, FANTASTIC—is the main word I use (but there are many more), my wife has been on various holidays with you over the last years, I believe twelve in total and I have accompanied her on two. We would both like to praise your representative Viv for her incredible knowledge and charm , look after her as she made our holiday.
Yet again top marks to all that are involved in organising and arranging, keep up the good work (AS WE KNOW YOU WILL)
Review by: Jane and David Phillips on 25/08/2016