Bruges is the perfect mix. It is one of those cities I’d love to stay in for a longer time, because everytime you get lost in its picturesque little streets that are covered with brick houses, wandering next to the deep blue river veins flowing through medieval bridges all around town, you find hidden gems on every corner and I had the feeling if you stay here longer you might find something new every time you get lost again.
From the Northern Railway station in Brussels are trains to Northern Belgium basically every 20 to 30 minutes, so we took one train that passes by Bruges in the morning. It takes about one hour and costs 7,50 euro one way.
Bruges is the capital of West Flanders and is located in the Flemish region of Belgium. Its historic city centre is completely intact and has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site for over a decade now. It is also believed that Bruges is the only place outside of Italy, where you can see a Michelangelo sculpture. In the famous ‘Church of our Lady’ is the ‘Madonna with a Child’ sculpture also known as ‘Madonna of Bruges’, that was bought by a wealthy merchant family of Bruges, then one of the leading commercial cities in Europe.
There are loads of independent boutiques and international brand stores and in between are so many restaurants and small places to eat local specialties, it would probably take weeks to dine in all.
The sheer quality and quantity of chocolate is unbelievable. It is not just a simple dessert in Belgium. It is art. There are so many shops solely dedicated to handcrafted chocolate, like “Chocoholic” or “The Atelier of Chocolate” and they are all beautifully decorated. You’ll find chocolate in all forms, tastes and colors. But there is something else, despite chocolate and beer, and that is Belgian Frits! Freshly-made delicious frits in a cone with sauces spilling over are your must breakfast, lunch or dinner in Belgium.
There is so much more to explore in Belgium and I’m a bit disappointed we only had a weekend, but we’ll be back in Belgium this summer and I definitely want to come back to Bruges as well, as it invites you to stroll around, eat chocolate, frits and waffles all day and simply enjoy your day.