Bruges to Ieper

To get to Ieper (Ypres) you have to change a few imes because it is off the main track.  It costs about €10 from Bruges.

When I arrived it was grey and overcast.  As soon as  saw the top of the Cloth Hall over the other buildings I instinctively knew what it was.  The information centre is inside.  They are very helpful and will show you how to get to all the sites.

The Cloth Hall

I’d arrived by noon so I headed to the campsite at the Jeugstadion.  The maps are not all clear – the best way is to go to the Menin Gate, turn left/south, then walk about 600m.  Turn right when you see a children’s playground and take the path past the confidence course.  There is a building with 24 hour automated check-in.  Reception is only open 9-12 and 4-5.30.  This was bad for me because the toilets needed either a key card or a code, and the machine had spat a card at me that didn’t work.  I nearly died, but there were plenty of bushes nearby.

The campsite is very cheap (€6.50/night) but all you get is a site – not even access to a shower!  If you’re in a group of 4 the hiker huts would be excellent value at €37/night.

I headed back to the city centre and the In Flanders Field Museum. 

Not a lot of everything, but just enough, and what they have is goodModel of a dugout. It's all presented in a modern and interesting way

I returned to the campsite.  A large group of children was playing in the playground, all wearing hi-vis vests!  EU bureaucracy?  I started on my dinner using the ethanol gel fuel and my hobo stove.

Made from a can

It may be smokeless but it’s also as patu as hexamine.  I had some lukewarm pasta then headed out for the Last Post at the Menin Gate.

They have a ceremony every night at 8pm.  There was a large crowd – arrive by 7.45 if you want a good spot.  Everyone was quiet but taking photos.  The buglers are from the local fire brigade and were very good, although they play the reveille comparatively slowly.