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Taking a train from other parts of Europe or Belgium to Brussels is very easy because of the frequency and large number of departing cities that have trains going via Brussels other major cities or directly to Brussels. There are three types of trains: domestic trains, intercity trains and high-speed trains all operated by several different companies. On trains that require not seat reservation passengers have to be prepared to stand for the entire journey if there no seats.
Belgian railways: www.b-rail.be
The Eurostar train runs high-speed TGV trains across the English Channel via the aptly named “Chunnel”. Eurostar travels daily from London to Paris and Brussels. The number of travellers choosing to take the Eurostar from London to Brussels grows every year. There are major stops in Lille, Paris and Brussels. There is a Eurostar platform at Brussels-Midi station. Read below for information on London to Brussels.
Thalys runs a high-speed train service that connects major European destinations Paris, Brussels, Amsterdam and Cologne. The only train from Paris to Brussels is operated by Thalys and from Berlin to Brussels, travellers need to transit via Cologne to reach Brussels. All trains arrive at Brussels-Midi station. Seats need to be reserved in advance. There are two classes: first and second. Refreshments are served on first class. There are no customs but arrive at least 15 minutes before departure.
Antwerp to Brussels
There are daily trains run by the domestic train service SNCB from Antwerp to Brussels. Travel time is 1 hour from Antwerp Centraal to Brussels-Midi. There are 2-3 trains every hour during the day. Tickets can be purchased at the station without seat reservation.
Ghent to Brussels
Daily trains operated by SNCB take travellers from Ghent (Gent) Sint Pieters station to Brussels-Midi it takes 30 minutes. There are trains every hour during the day. Tickets can be purchased at the station without seat reservation.
Bruges to Brussels
From the northern city of Bruges there are daily trains by SNCB. From Bruges (Brugge) train station to Brussels-Midi it takes 1 hour. Trains depart once every hour during the day. Tickets can be purchased at the station without seat reservation.
Liege to Brussels
From the southern Belgian city of Liege there are daily trains by SNCB. Liege Guillemins station is 1 hour to Brussels-Midi. There are 2-3 trains every hour during the day. Tickets can be purchased at the station without seat reservation.
Amsterdam to Brussels
The intercity train operated by SNCB also runs daily services from Amsterdam to Brussels. The train journey is just under 3 hours from Amsterdam Centraal station to Brussels-Midi station. Tickets can be purchased at the station without seat reservation. Thalys also travels from Amsterdam to Brussels on its way to Paris-Nord. You need to reserve a seat in advance on Thalys trains.
Luxembourg to Brussels
The most affordable way to travel from the small country of Luxembourg to Brussels is by train. There are hourly trains departing Luxembourg at 20 minutes past the hour. The journey takes approximately 3 hours. Tickets can be purchased at the station without seat reservation.
London to Brussels
The Eurostar arrives directly from London St Pancras International to Brussels-Midi station. Travel time is 1 hour. All seats are reserved in advance. There are customs when departing from London, ensure you arrive early before departure and have your passport ready.
Paris to Brussels
Thalys runs a high-speed train service from Paris-Nord to Brussels-Midi on a daily basis. Travel time is 1 hour 15 minutes. Trains run hourly between 9am and 5pm. An alternative route from Paris to Brussels is operated by TGV from Paris to Lille and from Lille to Brussels (approximately 1 hour 30 minutes) www.thalys.com www.tgv.com
Berlin to Brussels
Trains will depart from Berlin and change at Cologne (Koln) in Germany before continuing onto Brussels. The journey takes 3 hours. There are two train options: Intercity Express (ICE) for the entire journey - requires no seat reservations - or ICE from Berlin to Cologne and Thalys from Cologne to Brussels. Taking a Thalys train requires seat reservations.