A Weekend in Bruges, Belgium
This April I spent an amazing, delicious 10 days traveling all around Belgium. My travel buddy and partner-in-crime Stephanie (from PlainChicken.com) and I were planning our annual girls trip and Belgium was one of the options. How could we say no to the land of waffles, chocolate, and fries??! Off to Belgium we went!
We flew in and out of Brussels, but used a Eurail Global Pass from ACP Rail to travel everywhere in Belgium. We went to Bruges, Ghent, Brussels, Leuven, and Dinant. Traveling by train is THE way to go in Belgium! The trains are fast, reliable, modern, extremely easy to use, and go they everywhere, from major cities to small scenic villages.
There’s even a train station right in the Brussels airport, so you can get off the plane and right onto the train for your first destination.
For traveling in Belgium I highly recommend checking out all the different rail pass options from ACP Rail! There is definitely one to fit your itinerary, whether you’re staying in one country for a week or traveling all over Europe for a few months!
Stephanie and I started our Belgian adventure in the beautiful, picturesque city of Bruges.
Bruges is a great city for a day trip (it’s only about 1 hour by train from Brussels) or a lovely weekend getaway. You can definitely see most of the highlights in a day, but if you want to do a little more, like a boat ride on the canal and climb the belfry (which I highly recommend! Check out the view above!), you might want to stay a night. You can definitely see it all in two days! :)
Keep reading below for all the highlights you definitely don’t want to miss in Bruges!
What to do in Bruges
Above is Markt Square, the heart of the city featuring many historic buildings, shops, and restaurants.
And right around the corner is Burg Square where you’ll find the grand city hall built in 1376.
Head to Rozenhoedkaai for this typical postcard view of Bruges. From here you can hop on a boat to take a scenic float through the canals of Bruges.
It’s a fun way to learn a little history of the city!
This is the old hospital building. People used to arrive to the emergency room by boat!
It’s also a great way to get a unique view of the beautiful houses and architecture along the canal.
Next check out the Church of Our Lady.
Here you’ll find a white marble statue of the Madonna and Child by Michelangelo around 1504. It was the only sculpture by Michelangelo to leave Italy during his lifetime.
If you want the most breathtaking views of the city, head to the Belfry of Bruges and climb the tower to the top. The belfry offers 360 degree, panoramic views of Bruges. Check them out below!
Where to Eat in Bruges
Obviously, you HAVE to eat waffles!! There are two different types of waffles in Belgium, the Brussels waffle and the Liege waffle. The Liege waffles are the best!
We tried waffles from three popular waffle shops in Bruges: Chez Albert, Fred’s, and the waffle truck in Burg Square.
Fred’s was hands down our favorite! If you only get one waffle in Bruges, definitely head to Fred’s. I highly recommend at least one waffle a day. Twice a day is definitely acceptable. ;)
You can also get these fun waffles on a stick from Go.fre. They will dip them fresh in your choice of chocolate and topping. They are pretty but the Liege waffles definitely taste the best!
Of course you can’t go to Belgium without trying Belgian chocolate! It was still a little chilly when we went in April, so we stopped by The Old Chocolate House to warm up with some hot chocolate. When you order the hot chocolate it comes out with on this fun tray with mug of steaming milk. You can make it as chocolaty as you want by adding as much or as little chocolate as you want. Of course I added the entire thing! :)
One of my favorite pastry shops in Paris has a location in Bruges! Check out Aux Merveilleux de Fred for their famous pastry, the Merveilleux. True story — I was once carrying a bag from Aux Merveilleux de Fred through the Paris airport when I was suddenly swarmed by four, seriously four Air France employees. I thought I was about to be hauled off for interrogation, but they all started gushing over my bag from Aux Merveilleux de Fred. “Oh my gosh, you went to Aux Merveilleux de Fred!! What did you get?? Did you love it?? Isn’t the Merveilleux the best??!” Then they told me the story of how when the pastry shop originally opened, the Merveilleux was the only thing they sold.
Where to Stay in Bruges
If you are looking for the BEST place to stay in Bruges, I highly recommend the Hotel Heritage.
It’s beautiful, quiet, and right off the Markt Square so you’re within walking distance to everything. They even placed a chocolate on our pillow every night.
How fun is this bathroom??
So delicious! I highly recommend dinner here.
Also, there’s an entire chocolate buffet bar for breakfast! Love!
Hope you enjoyed this sneak peek of Bruges! Stay tuned for the rest of our Belgian adventures. Until next time!! :) xoxo