On Brugge (Bruges), Belgium

in General Discussion edited January 2014
I've spent this semester living and studying in Salzburg Austria, and traveling around Europe on our 4 day weekends (it's a great program ). Right now I am in Bruges, Belgium, and I just have to say, "I love this city."

This is the second weekend I've spent some time here. It's such a quiet, friendly city. And so beautiful. It's been cold and rainy both times I've been here, but it doesn't even matter. I'm sure it's even more beautiful in the summer. Of course, right now they're gearing up for Christmas, but most of the festivities don't start till next week, unfortunately. At any rate, I just wanted to share. I'll try and post some pictures of the place once I get back to my own computer in a couple days.


  • Reply 1 of 9
    nijiniji Posts: 288member
    my memories of brugge are similiar, with these additions:

    -i got my bentz stuck in an alley (the side mirrors)...

    -wonderful to sit in the large square and eat pommes frittes...

    -it was summer and i left the window open at the place we were staying: mosquitos on the canals...

  • Reply 2 of 9
    der kopfder kopf Posts: 2,275member

    You may guess once which city I live in the dead center of?
  • Reply 3 of 9
    der kopfder kopf Posts: 2,275member
    Well. I just had to... (just to hold us over till you get back home, SledgeHammer):

    An old fashioned horse-drawn carriage. Tourist trap #1, probably. Some natives complain the horsees make too much noise (!). I like it, unless I get stuck behind them in a narrow street. They go slower than grannies on bicycles.


    The Begijnhof (beguinage), whatever. Old convent type of thing, you have them all across Europe. Very peaceful and quiet. Beautiful around easter, for all the easter-related flowers then bloom (tulips or lillys or whatever, I'm no herbologist).


    A touch of Dutch (yadayadayada... the language spoken in Bruges and the part of Belgium it belongs to). I pass that text almost daily, and have never really known why it was painted there. Maybe for tourist's sake. It's near the biggest tourist arrival places (bus parking and train station). It translates to 'If you leave, will you return?". Next to it (not in pic) is a text that reads "If you come back, will you leave?".


    Cobblestones. All who've been to Bruges know how ubiquitous these are. And there is actually a move away from asfalt back to cobblestones. The main streets are all cobblestones, whereas most of them weren't, as near as 10 to 15 years ago. And the backstreets are also migrating away from blacktop (though it's more of a gray top in Belgium). One sign that Bruges is really going after tourists by reviving and restoring its very medieval character. A cause of criticism also. Many claim (especially those not living in Bruges) that Bruges has become unliveable, and that it is turning into a resort, rather than a well-balanced town, unifying the old and the new. I don't share that point of view.

    Anyway, cobblestones can become pretty pesky after 15 years (much like a mouth full of rotten, untended teeth) especially when tackling them on bicycle (which is a very popular means of transport round these parts).


    The Rozenhoedkaai. I used to pass there daily when going to nursery and elementary school. I'd go so far as to claim that it is one of the most photographed places of Bruges. And, of course, I probably figure in a thousand of those pics (after a while, you get tired of waiting for daddy x or hubby y to focus his lens, adjust the diafragm and take his pic).

    What's more: I live about 100 metres (that is probably 110 yards) from this very spot.


    The heroic skyline of Bruges. With, from left to right: Our Lady's Church (highest tower in and around Bruges, and home to one of five Michelangelo statues residing outside of Italy), a Mill, some smaller towerettes, Saint-Salvator (Saviour, I guess) Cathedral (home-stadium of the local Bishop) and Halletoren (on the main square).


    I'm waiting for your pics, SledgeHammer!

    (btw: only two of the pics were taken by myself. The others courtesy of Tourism Bruges).
  • Reply 4 of 9
    Brugge's canals smelled awful in the summer when I was there.

    It was also a bit too crowded for my tastes.

    That's all I have to add.
  • Reply 5 of 9
    zozo Posts: 3,115member
    one my good friends is from there.

    I studied and then worked 7 years in Brussels and went often enough to Bruggggges.

    I wonder if tourism has gon up sine "Austin Powers"

    Yes... nice city... but wow was it boring. After staying at my friend's place for a weekend, even he said he was bored senseless.

    Anyway... a nice town!
  • Reply 6 of 9
    der kopfder kopf Posts: 2,275member
    Wow. You know what they say. If you can't say anything nice...

    Anyway. I've never been bothered by any smell of the canals. Boring? Well, it's a small town, it's fairly possible.
  • Reply 7 of 9

    Originally posted by der Kopf

    The Rozenhoedkaai.

    I took a picture there last night , then walked out to the windmills in the semi-rain and took pictures there.

    As far as the claims of Bruges being boring...after more than 2 months of non-stop go go go all over Europe, being able to just relax, walk around town, and spend way too much money on Dumon's chocolate is very nice. Plus, this country has great beer.

    And now, I think I'm going to get out of this internet cafe and do a little more of that walking around. Plus it's about dinner time, so that's all for now.
  • Reply 8 of 9
    I loved Brugge, spent almost 4 weeks there once. Beautiful city, good people, great beer!
  • Reply 9 of 9
    In the interest of keeping load time down, I posted a few pics to a .Mac page. You can see them at http://homepage.mac.com/speaktruth/PhotoAlbum12.html

    For some reason the picture captions didn't work, so here they are:

    1. Bruges from the Belfry

    2. St. Arnoldus: Patron Saint of brewers. At the Straffe Hendrik Brewery Museum.

    3. t'Brugs Biertje, featuring a selection of over 300 beers.

    4. From the window of the gate house on the East side of town.

    5. Dumon's: Best chocolate in the world

    6. Some other chocolate treats

    7. Windmill 4 of 4 (or 1 of 4, depending on which end you start from)

    8. De Halve Maan
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