12 days in France, Brussels & Cologne Itinerary

12 days in France, Brussels & Cologne Itinerary

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Route & dates

12 days in France, Brussels & Cologne Itinerary

Start: Nantes, France
train:  2​h 30​min
1
Paris, France
— 4 nights
train:  2​h
2
Strasbourg, France
— 3 nights
train:  3​h 45​min
3
Brussels, Belgium
— 2 nights
train:  1​h 45​min
4
Cologne, Germany
— 2 nights
Fly:  5​h
End: Nantes, France

4
nights
Paris, France

Paris ©
A beautiful and romantic city fit for any itinerary, Paris brims with historic associations and remains vastly influential in the realms of culture, art, fashion, food and design.
You'll find plenty of places to visit near Paris: Versailles (Palace of Versailles & The Hall of Mirrors). There's still lots to do: admire the masterpieces at Louvre Museum, admire the landmark architecture of Sainte-Chapelle, pause for some photo ops at Arc de Triomphe, and test your problem-solving skills at popular escape rooms.

For photos, reviews, maps, and more tourist information, you can read our Paris trip planner .

Nantes to Paris is an approximately 2.5-hour train ride. You can also fly; or drive. Expect slightly colder weather when traveling from Nantes in December: highs in Paris hover around 9°C, while lows dip to 3°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 23rd (Mon) so you can catch the train to Strasbourg.

Things to do in Paris

Historic Sites Museums Neighborhoods

Side Trip

Versailles
Highlights from your plan
Louvre Museum ©
Louvre Museum
Arc de Triomphe ©
Arc de Triomphe
Eiffel Tower ©
Eiffel Tower

3
nights
Strasbourg, France

Strasbourg ©
Strasbourg is famous for its beautiful historical center, the Grande Île, which was the first city center classified entirely as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Strasbourg: Château du Haut-Kœnigsbourg (in Orschwiller), Colmar (Little Venice & Old Town) and Vieille ville d'Eguisheim (in Eguisheim). Next up on the itinerary: pause for some serene contemplation at Cathedrale Notre Dame de Strasbourg, test your problem-solving skills at popular escape rooms, examine the collection at Palais de Rohan, and don't miss a visit to Gare de Strasbourg.

For more things to do, ratings, photos, and more tourist information, you can read our Strasbourg trip itinerary maker .

Traveling by train from Paris to Strasbourg takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and train; or drive. In December in Strasbourg, expect temperatures between 7°C during the day and 0°C at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 26th (Thu) so you can catch the train to Brussels.

Things to do in Strasbourg

Neighborhoods Historic Sites Museums

Side Trips

Colmar, Vieille ville d'Eguisheim, Château du Haut-Kœnigsbourg
Highlights from your plan
La Petite France ©
La Petite France
Cathedrale Notre Dame de Strasbourg ©
Château du Haut-Kœnigsbourg ©
Château du Haut-Kœnigsbourg

2
nights
Brussels, Belgium

Brussels ©
The allure of the multi-cultural capital, Brussels, stems from its mix of political intrigue, artistic influence, historical significance, and a thriving social scene.
Kick off your visit on the 26th (Thu): see the interesting displays at Atomium, examine the collection at Musical Instruments Museum (MIM), then appreciate the history behind Manneken Pis, then get engrossed in the history at Museum of the City of Brussels (Musee de la Ville de Bruxelles), and finally contemplate the long history of Grand Place. On the 27th (Fri), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: find something for the whole family at Mini-Europe, then browse the different shops at Les Galeries Royales Saint-Hubert, and then take in the spiritual surroundings of St. Michael and St. Gudula Cathedral (Cathedrale St-Michel et Ste-Gudule).

Take the guesswork out of planning a Brussels vacation by using our trip itinerary maker.

Take a train from Strasbourg to Brussels in 4 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or drive. Expect a daytime high around 7°C in December, and nighttime lows around 1°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 28th (Sat) so you can take a train to Cologne.

Things to do in Brussels

Museums Historic Sites Theme Parks
Highlights from your plan
Grand Place ©
Grand Place
Atomium ©
Atomium
Musical Instruments Museum (MIM) ©
Musical Instruments Museum (MIM)

2
nights
Cologne, Germany

Cologne ©
Though Cologne famously contains 12 Romanesque churches, the city's top prize remains its landmark Gothic cathedral.
Step out of Cologne with an excursion to Aachen Cathedral in Aachen--about 1h 05 min away. And it doesn't end there: admire the landmark architecture of Cologne Cathedral, test your problem-solving skills at popular escape rooms, get in on the family fun at Phantasialand, and make a trip to Hohenzollern Bridge.

Plan my trip to Cologne with suggested itineraries provided by Inspirock.

Traveling by train from Brussels to Cologne takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In December, daytime highs in Cologne are 9°C, while nighttime lows are 3°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 30th (Mon) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Cologne

Theme Parks Historic Sites Museums

Side Trips

Aachen Cathedral, Phantasialand
Highlights from your plan
Phantasialand ©
Phantasialand
Cologne Cathedral ©
Cologne Cathedral
Museum Ludwig ©
Museum Ludwig

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