Any questions? We love to help you! Just call us at +32 2 669 82 09

History

Bavarian Castles trip, according to an 8-year-old kid

Expat Club's Bavarian Castles trip is a perfect destination for guests of all ages. In fact, this is one of those trips that is extremely suitable for children. Now, we as adults may think so, but what would a child actually say? I investigated as I took my own 8-year-old son to the last edition of this trip.

The 9 Must-See Castles of Bavaria

One of the top bucket-list destinations in Europe is Bavaria, and in particular, the impressive number of stunning castles you can visit in and around Munich. The spotlight of these castle tours is on those built by King Ludwig II. His palaces get a lot of the hype due to his own eccentric persona, the attention to detail in their construction, and just how over-the-top they were. Ludwig II died at age 40, so he didn’t have much time to build more than the 3 castles that still exist today: Neuschwanstein, Herrenchiemsee, and Linderhof. In fact, the first two were not even finished. There are a lot more castles and palaces to discover than those of Ludwig II (which you should anyway visit, because, wow). Every year, we visit 9 of these fabulous castles, each one unique and full of unb...

5 Interesting Facts about Chernobyl

Thirty-four years later, the Chernobyl disaster continues to be a topic of great discussion. It has come to the forefront once more, thanks to the HBO series released in 2019 and the burgeoning tourism industry in the area. Here are five interesting facts about Chernobyl

Trip review: A Little Louvre in Lens

With more than 10 million visitors a year, the Louvre is the world’s most visited museum. It’s also the world’s largest, so it’s not surprising that it can be a bit overwhelming. But if you want to see some of the world’s great treasures, you don’t have to venture into Paris. The Louvre has smaller museums in Abu Dhabi and Lens, Pas-de-Calais, a mining town located about 200 kilometres north of Paris.  In October, Expat Club journeyed to Lens. The Louvre-Lens is the baby brother of the Louvre and home to 200 masterpieces on loan from the Louvre Museum in Paris. From a Coal Mine to a Museum The Louvre-Lens opened in 2012, transforming a former coal mine into a regional jewel. The museum was built in Lens to re-energize the city and give it an economic boost.  It’s also part of France’...

Trip Review: Bastogne Battlefields

You never know what surprises are in store when you travel on an Expat Club trip. Our day trip to Bastogne was no exception. Expat Club founder Edgar Hütte arranged for the “greatest living expert” on the Battle of the Bulge (as proclaimed by General Graham Hollands) to be our guide for the day. Martin King is a military historian, lecturer, author and TV personality. For more than two decades, the Emmy award-winning television personality has accompanied veterans on tours of the battlefields of World War II, bringing history to life with his insightful explanations of what transpired in the dark days of the War. His level of expertise on Bastogne and the Battle of the Bulge is impressive and unmatched. We realised just how lucky we were to have him present this area to us! His unique stor...

Trip Review: Chateaux de la Loire

Nowhere is the sheer opulence of French life in centuries past more apparent than in the chateaux of the Loire Valley. Each year, more than 3.3 million travelers visit the 42 chateaux that comprise the UNESCO World Heritage Site. Yet, there are more than 300 chateaux scattered across the Valley. It’s no surprise that the region is  the nation’s second-biggest tourist attraction behind Paris. Most of the chateaux were constructed in the 17th and 18th centuries. They offered royalty and noblemen a welcome escape from Parisian politics. Over Bastille Day weekend, they offered 26 Expat Club members a romantic glimpse into the past. DAY ONE We were ready to start on a “chateaux sampler,” discovering the magic and mystery of these elegant edifices. Our luxury coach arrive...

Remember the Fallen

War site trips are excellent opportunities to not only understand what took places on those sites but to also experience them and pay respects for the fallen. For us at Expat Club, these trips are very special. Every single one of the war site trips we host has proven to be an incredibly rewarding and humbling experience. Here are 6 war sites we believe are a must for every traveller. 

Châteaux de la Loire: 5 Exceptional Castles Worth a Visit

The Loire Valley is often called the Cradle of the French or the Garden of France. This comes from the many vineyards and orchards in the area. Located 200km South from Paris, it’s also well known for the incredibly high number of castles! Here are five  exceptional castles worth a visit

Trip review: D-Day 75th Anniversary

After every trip I organise and host I ask myself the question what could have been done better. For our recent D-Day trip to Normandy I certainly have some (very) small points for improvement for a next edition (see 2020 trip). But overall I can look back to a successful and deeply impressive project. We got so much more than I had hoped for, despite that traffic on the small hedged-border Normandy coastal roads sometimes threw a spanner in the works. With a long Pentecostal weekend ahead, we departed on Friday evening towards our first destination in Upper Normandy, Le Havre with its harbour. The city was not part of the D-Day offence, but it was part of the larger Operation Overlord. Being at the end of the Seine river, it was an essential stronghold for the Germans and a key objective ...

D-Day 75th Anniversary: Our 3 favorite movie and TV biopics

75 years ago today, tens of thousands of soldiers of the Allied Forces landed on the beaches of Normandy.  D-Day was a turning point in the Second World War. It was a pivotal moment to defeat the Nazi regime 11 months and 1 day later. The significance of this military operation has been epitomized in countless movie and TV productions. Here are 3 notable examples The Longest Day (1962) IMDB One could say this movie was the first ever large-scale, massive movie production tackling this subject. The Longest Day boasted an all-star ensemble cast from multiple countries, and its production meticulously looked at every detail with the help of military consultants. The film follows the Normandy landings from the perspective of both Allied and Axis forces. It’s shot in a documentary drama s...

Monet’s Magical Gardens

There are few places in France as magical as Giverny, a quaint village that lies just 80 km from Paris. Claude Monet, the father of Impressionism, discovered this gateway to Normandy as he glanced out of a train window back in 1883. On 26 May, Expat Club travellers got a chance to discover it, too. It was an early start for the weary travellers as we headed down the highway from Brussels. Sitting on our comfortable and roomy luxury coach, we got inspired for the visit with a 90-minute documentary about Monet that showcased his life through letters he wrote. Soon, the rolling green hills of the French countryside greeted us as we neared Giverny.  By lunchtime, we had arrived! We walked down stone streets, past charming slate-roof buildings and homes, to LesNymphéas, French for the water lil...

Opal Coast: Winding roads and windy skies

Traveling with Expat Club is always an adventure, and our trip to the Opal Coast was no exception. We left the grey skies and pelting rain of Brussels behind as we drove west to the northern coast of France. Skies cleared, but brisk winds accompanied us on our full-day foray to France. Dunkirk Our first stop was the port city of Dunkirk, a city steeped in history. Towering over the city is Tour du Leughenaer, or “the liar’s tower.” Erected in 1450 and converted to a lighthouse around 1793, it’s the city’s oldest building. Legend says false lighthouse signals lured ships into areas where they were grounded and then looted. We had time to walk through the maritime city, visiting the active market, having a coffee and fresh croissant, or viewing spectacular churches like the Gothic-style Sain...