26/09/2018

TRAVEL | How To Spend 48H in Brugge, Belgium


My best tips to explore this chocolate box town.

Last August, my boyfriend and I took a little trip to Brugge. This adorable town is located on the Dutch part of Belgium, and I had seen many a beautiful photo of the place. I had also read Gabrielle's praise on her blog (A Glass of Ice) of how Brugge was a lovely city for a European break. And I can now say, after spending two lovely days there, that it is definitely a gorgeous place to see.
Without further ado, here are my top tips to spend 48 hours in Brugge:

TRY SOME OF THE BEST FOOD (RESTAURANT TIPS BELOW!)
The holy trinity of food in Brugge is as follows: French fries, waffles, chocolate. So of course, my boyfriend and I tried all three of them. Eating in Brugge is a tad expensive - in general, I think that Brugge is not really a budget-friendly town, but you do get what you pay for. The place I loved the most, and where we went on our first afternoon there, is the Old Chocolate House. It is a chocolate shop downstairs, and you have to go upstairs to the tea room to have the most wonderful choice of hot chocolate I have ever seen. I picked the Ecuador chocolate, '70.4% cocoa with fruity accents, hints of coffee and rum'. Heaven in a bowl! You are given a little tray with a chocolate basket made of chocolate and full of chocolate buttons. You have to pour the chocolate baskets into a bowl of hot milk and stir it until the chocolate dissolves. The whole experience is really fun, and the menu is quite extensive, from darks to milk and white chocolate. You even have fruity ones!

The Old Chocolate House
Mariastraat 1a, 8000 Brugge


French fries (let's forget about the controversial name here...) can be found everywhere in Brugge, from sit-down restaurants to little takeaway places where you can get them as a snack. We personally decided to pay a visit to the Potato Bar, a hip place where, you guessed it, the specialty is potatoes. You can choose between three portion sizes, but the best things is the toppings. They make a real change from your plain ketchup and mayonnaise dips! I picked the truffle mayonnaise (a generous serving of creamy mayonnaise, with truffles and beetroot) while my boyfriend got a beef stew topping. Pick the smaller size serving, it is more than enough for one meal - unless you are really hungry.

Sint-Amandsstraat 31, 8000 Brugge


I won't go into too much detail about waffles - you can find them pretty much everywhere, they are all super yummy and they will be your afternoon sweet snack of choice if you visit Brugge - trust me!
The last place I wanted to mention is Salade Folle (which means Crazy Salad in French): a lovely, healthy food restaurant with serious Instagram vibes. I mean, my salad looked like a work of art. It is not the cheapest place to go, however you do get excellent food for the price you pay. 

Salade Folle
Walplein 13, 8000 Brugge


On a side-note, if you like toast - and like taking pictures of cute cafés even more than you like toast - head to That's Toast to try out one of their compositions. It's all toast, and it's yummy. Be there early though as it gets crowded very quickly and you may have to queue to be seated after 10 am.
Another thing to know is that restaurants in Brugge (I can't talk for the rest of Belgium though) don't have tap water. They will give you a glass bottle if you ask for water. One thing I've noticed, is that all restaurants generally have one beer on the menu that's cheaper than water... Just sayin'.

TAKE A BREWERY TOUR
If you have as little as 48 hours in a new place, I would recommend doing one thing that you wouldn't do anywhere else. For us, it was a brewery tour! De Halve Maan (The Half Moon) is an old brewery and pub that everybody knows in Brugge. They have been brewing their own beers for centuries, and you can learn all about the process during a brewery tour.


For 10€ per person, you get a guided tour as well as a coupon for one of their ales, the Brugse Zot, to try any time you wish after the tour is completed. No matter whether you are a beer geek or not, I would highly recommend this tour. Even my boyfriend, who does not drink, loved it. Great value for money, and it makes a change from your usual museum! 
Bonus point: during the tour you get to climb to the roofs of the brewery, and get a beautiful panoramic view of Brugge. 


WALK AROUND THE FAIRYTALE STREETS
My favourite thing in Brugge was to explore. It's a small town, so you can do everything by foot - or in a carriage drawn by horses if you're feeling fancy. My boyfriend and I had the best time walking around and just taking in the view. The place we liked most was the little quarter tucked away behind the Brugge Cathedral - just meander around the streets, and on a Friday afternoon, everything was so quiet that we could hear a pin drop...


Some of the landmarks you don't want to miss are the Markt, Brugge's market place, where you can see the Belfort. The bell rings every day and plays a long tune, which at first feels special, and after a while gets slightly annoying as it tingles in your ears. Trust me, that bell never stops. 
There are plenty of restaurants all around the market place, which we did not try, but I drooled more than once over the beauty of the buildings themselves. I mean...


Generally speaking, once you get outside of the main streets (where all the shops and restaurants are) you will find that Brugge is very quiet and relaxing. Go for a walk along the canal, find the prettiest houses on the outskirts, and don't stick with the town centre only - getting away from the crowds always feel like you're discovering the town as it really is.
There are other beautiful spots in Brugge that I will share in other posts, so keep your eyes peeled for that!

THE DO'S AND DON'TS
There are a few other things visitors to Brugge should know. The first one is a practical tip for you to survive: be careful with cars and bikes. I am under the impression that drivers on any type of vehicles in Brugge don't really care about pedestrians. There isn't a lot of cars driving around so you may well end up walking on the road or on the pavement regardless, but make sure you always check around you - most especially for bikes. People love bikes there. Dutch influence I assume!
Last but not least, I had to make a note on the churches in Brugge. I adore visiting churches. Whenever I go somewhere new in Europe, I look for the churches because they are often a museum in themselves. My boyfriend and I visited three religious landmarks in Brugge, and I have to say, I was far from impressed. The Basilica of the Holy Blood claims to possess a relic of the Blood of Christ. I was expecting a lot from the architecture and art inside the churches but each time I was disappointed. I would say none of them are a must to visit - however, you will see that the outside structures of all the churches are stunning. The bell towers are so high in the sky, and the doors and facades are beautiful and intricate, but that is where it stops. I am finishing on a little downer, I know, but I had to share my thoughts on that side too. But I may be a little picky - I do like my dramatic, baroque Italian churches thus I am a little biased...

Have you been to Brugge? What is the cutest town you've ever visited?
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25 comments:

  1. Amazing photos, the buildings are stunning!

    Anika | anikamay.co.uk

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  2. It's just so postcard pretty! I definitely need to go :)

    Jasmine xx

    Jasmine Talks Beauty

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    1. Exactly, Brugge is a postcard-perfect town! xx

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  3. Wow, seeing this travel refreshes my mind from all the worries I've been up to in school. I can't wait for my trip on the holidays! I love these pictures <3

    xoxo,
    SHAIRA
    www.missdream-girl.blogspot.com

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    1. I'm glad this helped Shaira! Hope you have lots of fun on your holiday :) xx

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  4. I have never been to Brugges yet, but I made a note to skip the churches and head straight for the food the day that changes.

    Anne - Linda, Libra, Loca

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    1. You took out the best from this post Anne! xx

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  5. I shouldn't have read that post before having my dinner... I could hear my tummy grumbling! I haven't been to Brugge yet, however, it is one of the places I'd so like to visit. Your photos are beautiful... I just need to convince my hubby(he has been there before and doesn't want to go again), all the food options and the beers might help me to convince him :) Also, you look so pretty x

    Ela BellaWorld

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    1. Haha I'm sorry Ela! But the food in Brugge is just so good... I am sure your husband will want to go again if you treat him to all the good food! xx

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  6. Stunning pictures. I would love to visit Brugge. I also agree with you about churches, they are like museums indeed.

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    1. You should go one day Anca! xx

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  7. Oh, babe! You know how much I completely adore Brugge and so this travel diary was a total treat to read through :) So pleased to know you always enjoyed your time there Julia!!

    aglassofice.com x

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    1. I seriously think Brugge should pay you for advertising their town haha, you do it so well! xx

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  8. Aw this place looks so darling, such beautiful buildings :D I love your floral dress and the food looks amazing too! I could sit and read your photo diaries all day and dream of far off places, there are so many places on my wishlist now, I want to go everywhere!! xx

    elizabeth ♡ ”Ice Cream” whispers Clara
    (I just wondered if you might be interested in my giveaway! It’s for the Norvina palette by Anastasia Beverly Hills - just thought I’d ask haha :D xx)

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    1. Yes, the buildings are stunning. I'm so glad you enjoy these posts Elizabeth, I hope I always make you travel a little with me! xx

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  9. preciosas fotos y precioso post !!
    http://juliaspeaksbeauty.blogspot.com/2018/09/travel-how-to-spend-48h-in-brugge.html

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  10. I've never been to Brugge, but I've always wanted to visit as it looks like such a lovely city xx

    Gemma Etc. ❤️

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  11. brugge is on my travel list since forever! I remember Gabrielle's post and now yours! i am craving to visit the city so much!! from italy it's just a bit complicated to get there - I need to do a few more research !

    xx from italy
    Cate ღ 35mm in Style

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  12. Brugge is such a lovely and cute city. I really like architecture and I want try that hot chocolate. Thank you for this useful city guide.

    Blog - http://www.exclusivebeautydiary.com
    YouTube - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e48JZd0Gbj0


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  13. Wow the travel looks loads of fun!

    http://alyinwanderland.com

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