Sweet Little Brugge!

Sweet Little Brugge!

Grote Markt, Market Square, Bruges, Brugge, Belgium
There comes a day in your life when waiting anymore feels like a waste of time. Euro Trip was just that for me. There came a time when I decided to take the plunge all by myself. Sounds like m talking about getting married or some bigger decision in my life? It was big to me. Introvert by birth, in this trip, I was like a panda trying to learn kungfu. But just like in the movie, I started to enjoy every minute of it.
 
Now that I had decided to fly solo, I decided to put myself in self created experiment by not only travelling alone but also making sure that I am surrounded by more and more strangers – instead of cozy hotels, I decided to crash at hostels sharing room with other travelers and I purposely did not carry any internet or phone with me when I was out on roads.
 
How did it feel? On the first day, it felt like I was a self torture trip but as days passed by, I became more comfortable with choosing my own path, deciding my own routes, and dealing with last minute gate changes at airport, finding my way around the cities while taking directions from strangers, and meeting some great people on the way. All in all, the trip changed my opinion about myself. I, quite literally, surprised myself.
Last year on Easter holidays I decided to visit Brugge with my family, after having a tough time finding an Airbnb at the last moment due to holiday rush, we booked a hotel in suburbs. Brugge is just a 2-3 hours train ride away from Amsterdam. We took a train early morning and were in Brugge by 11am.
 
Brugge with its charm has been on my bucket list for a long time and Bollywood movie PK only made my desire stronger. Indian Film industry and international tourism go hand in hand; yes a trend started by Yashraj movies in 90s has only grown over the years. This movie opens with scenic beauty of Brugge.
Bruges, Brugge, Belgium

Its many canals, historical city center, and off-course chocolates, beer, and fries all make Brugge a traveler’s paradise. The entire historical city center of Brugge is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and its landscapes are just to live for. It was raining the day we reached Brugge and it looked picture perfect with washed green color all around us.

Brugge is a small city with great history and is perfect for a day trip, since we wanted to soak in more, we stayed overnight and enjoyed evening and early morning walk around the historic center and market square. I and my camera were on seventh heaven here. Oh! Don’t miss delicious breakfast at Le Pain Quotidien. I loved their food back home in Mumbai but having it in Belgium was just amazing.
Le Pain Quotidien, Bruges, Brugge, Belgium
Homemade Chocolates, Bruges, Brugge, Belgium

Even though everyone suggested hopping on to a boat to see Brugge through its canals, we decided to walk around at our own pace enjoying all historic buildings, shops, and restaurants. My favorite food at Brugge was anything to do with chocolate – homemade chocolates to Belgian hot chocolate to waffle with chocolate toppings – as I said, anything to do with chocolates.

When in Brugge do visit the following places to just complete “The Brugge Experience”:

Grote Markt

Grote Markt also known as the Market Square, is the largest square in city of Brugge surrounded by beautiful historical buildings with color (quite literally) and character. I went bonkers in with my camera, trying to capture the essence of this place and then sat there for hours just to observe the scenery around. Market square is located at the historic center with a backdrop of the famous Belfry Tower and Bruges history museum. The square is the center of all festivals, celebrations, tournaments, fairs, and much more.

Grote Markt, Market Square, Bruges, Brugge, Belgium
Belfry, Belfort, Bruges, Brugge, Belgium

Belfry Tower

Built in 1240 at the historic center of Brugge, Belfry is a medieval bell tower which housed city archives. In 1280 the tower and city archives were destroyed in a massive fire and the tower was rebuilt. One can take the Ariel view of the city from top of this tower. My suggestion is to definitely climb the Belfry, although I couldn’t do so, due to holiday rush we didn’t get the tickets after standing in the queue for about an hour.

Sint Salvator Cathedral

Also known as Bruges Cathedral, Sint Salvator Cathedral is one of the few buildings which had never been destroyed over the centuries. Built in 10th century as Parish Church, it was granted the cathedral status in 19th century.

Basilica of the Holy Blood

There is also the Basilica of the Holy Blood in Bruges, which is a Roman Catholic basilica which is believed to house a cloth stained with blood of Christ

Sint Salvator Cathedral, Bruges, Brugge, Belgium
Basilica of the Holy Blood, Bruges, Brugge, Belgium

Rozenhoedkaai Canal

Rozenhoedkaai, Bruges, Brugge, Belgium
Walk around Brugges historical city center just soothes your inner traveler. Canals and cobbled streets characterize Bruges. Its small lanes and by-lanes are a treat to your eyes. Go to Rozenhoedkaai, for the most photographed place in Brugge.
 
Even though we covered entire Brugge in 1.5 days on foot, there is something about Brugge which is calling me back for a longer stay. Hope to see you soon!

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