Things to do

Top ideas for an August Bank Holiday getaway

See our Eurotunnel top picks for booking your trip for the August bank holiday, with so much to see Eurotunnel Le Shuttle can get your there!

Although it’s lovely to have an extended weekend, when you're looking to enjoy a quick trip away for a bank holiday, you don't want to have to travel too far. Fortunately, a journey with Eurotunnel le Shuttle is only 35 minutes from Folkestone to Calais, so you can be making your way to your dream getaway in Europe in no time whatsoever. So, pack up the car and head to one of these top destinations for your August bank holiday getaway.

cityscape of Ghent with intricate buildings on the riverbank with people walking by and enjoying shops and restaurants

Ghent, Belgium

Ghent is a beautiful Belgian city, bursting with fantastic medieval architecture and rich with culture and history. We suggest visiting the city's historical centre before anything else; its car-free streets, magnificent buildings and local boutiques make for a great way to spend your first day of the bank holiday.

Art and Culture in Ghent

If you're a fan of art, after your exploration of the city's centre, pay the Museum of Fine Arts a visit. Chock-a-block with amazing examples of art, ranging all the way from the Middle Ages, to the 20th century. There's also a variety of styles on display; so, whether you prefer the odd bit of romanticism, or have more of an interest in surrealism and expressionism, you're bound to find an area of art you love.

Dining in Ghent

On your way for a bite to eat, make a detour along the Werregarenstraat, a popular street where the walls are covered in colourful graffiti art. Make sure you bring your camera along, to capture the latest vibrant designs. After that, take a stroll to the Koffies du Draak café to enjoy a traditionally roasted drink and cake.

How far away is Ghent?

Ghent is in East Flanders, Belgium, but it’s less than 2 hours by car from Calais. The A16 and E40 are the most direct route, but you do have the option to stop in Bruges or Dunkirk along the way if you have time.

Dine al fresco in the medieval Saint Leu district

Amiens, France

A jewel of northern France, part of ‘hidden France’, and just an hour and 30-minutes from the Calais terminal, Amiens is a city of beautiful gardens and even prettier architecture. For a day out in the sun, make the journey to Parc Saint-Pierre, a stunningly modern park that was designed by the landscape architect, Jaqueline Osty. Enjoy a picnic on the lush green lawns, or slowly meander around the lake and between the park's towering trees.

Pretty Architecture

After completely unwinding at Parc Saint-Pierre, make your way over to the city's centre where you'll get the chance to explore the enchanting La Cathédrale en Couleurs. The cathedral is a UNESCO world heritage site, and with its giant scarlet doors and intricate carving, it's no surprise as to why. To truly enjoy the cathedral at its best, visit during the evening when bright beams light up the colourful sculptures of saints and apostles.

Dining in Amiens

Amiens has a veritable treasure trove of places to eat, from international cuisine to local delicacies. We recommend French restaurant Les Deux Mondes, where you can gorge on lobster bisque, perfectly cooked steak, and toasted baguettes with grilled goat’s cheese. Or, if you like your dinner with a literary twist, La Maison à Vapeur takes its name from a novel by Jules Verne, the prolific French writer who adopted Amiens as home. Enjoy French classics like entrecôte and beef tartare on the front terrace or in the Verne-themed dining room.

In the warmer months, dine al fresco in the Saint Leu district, as the views of its wooden and half-timbered houses make you feel like you’ve stepped back in time.

Thanks to Bern's position along Aare River, there are many beautiful views in the city

Bern, Switzerland

Bern is the capital city of Switzerland, with many amazing things to see and do, including visiting where Albert Einstein lived when he wrote his famous Theory of Relativity. The Old Town of Bern was declared a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage site in 1983 because of the preserved medieval city centre and Bern is also home to the first Lindt chocolate factory. It’s an 8-hour drive to reach Bern, but there’s so much to see here it’s well worth the journey.

Entertain the kids

When you visit Bern, you’ll immediately notice bear symbols on murals, flags, and fountain decorations. Legend is that a bear was the first animal to be killed by the founder of the city. If you're travelling with children, why not take the whole family to the Bear Park; a vast piece of land where a collection of bears can explore and play, as well as hunt for fresh fish from the park's lake? It's a great opportunity for you and your kids to get up close and personal with these captivating creatures in a natural environment.

The Rose Garden

For a relaxing morning or afternoon, explore the city's Rose Garden. An amazing 220 different types of rose can be found here, as well as the newly introduced beds of azaleas, rhododendrons, and irises. The garden has been public since 1913 and is the perfect place to relax with a picnic or kick around a ball with the kids. What’s more, you can also climb the 222 steps of Bern Münster here for a 360 panoramic view of the city below.

Experience Swiss Culture

For a truly ‘Swiss’ experience, be sure to visit Bern’s Zytglogge, a beautiful clock tower with museum and exhibit showing you the timepiece’s inner workings. If you're looking to taste some traditional Swiss cuisine, then stop by the rustic Klötzlikeller for a delicious, home-cooked lunch.

Bank holiday breaks with Eurotunnel Le Shuttle

Hopefully this has shown you how much is on offer in Europe for the perfect long-weekend. If you're in need of a break filled with culture and new experiences, then book your 35-minute journey to Calais with Eurotunnel Le Shuttle today.

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