2010 Fall Sarah Bergstein Temple Rome

The Venice of Belgium

People weren’t kidding when they said Bruges is like the Venice of Belgium.  Jaclyn and I had heard such good things about Bruges, so we knew we wanted to spend at least a day exploring the place.  Our Couch Surfing host gave us two really great maps, hooked us up with discounted train tickets to and from Bruges, and pointed us on our way to explore another amazing Belgian city.

Bruges was a magical place

We arrived in Bruges at about 10 a.m. and after about a ten minute walk from the train station into the actual town, Jaclyn and I knew we made the right choice by deciding to take a day trip.  We had spent the entire day before exploring Brussels and felt that we truly had seen just about every part of the city and all the major sites we wanted to see, so that we were ready to take on a new town.

Sure, we only really spent about eight hours in Bruges, but this town will always hold a special place in my heart.  I would certainly go back to Bruges one day.  The town is very quaint with the most adorable streets and houses and restaurants and pubs and a ton of massive and beautiful churches and the nicest and most friendly people.  Not to mention, there are these incredible little bridges everywhere and a river that runs all the way around and throughout the town.  In that respect, it felt like Venice, but Bruges is a very special place all in its own.

We stumbled upon some really beautiful things in Bruges

Jaclyn and I took our map and decided just to walk the entire perimiter of the town and zigzag back and forth within the town when we knew there was something we wanted to see.  We went inside every chuch we came across, took pictures on all the scenic little bridges, ate some of the most incredible Belgian chocolate, shopped for our family and friends, enjoyed food from the Christmas market, watched people ice skate in the town square that was all decked out for Christmas, and truly just enjoyed the day.  Belgium is known to be a rainy sort of place, but we had nothing but sunshine all day long.  In fact, there wasn’t a cloud in the sky.

Throughout mine and Jaclyn’s semester abroad I was sort of the travel planner.  I had an idea of all the places we’d want to see, and I really just wanted to show Jaclyn and amazing time.  I’m pretty certain she had a phenomenal time in all the places we traveled to, but there was a sense of pressure for this last trip to Belgium.  I really wanted her to like Brussels and Bruge and for us to have a good time, since it would be our last travel within Europe and our last weekend adventure before going back to the States.

The Belgian chocolate was delicious

Thankfully, Jaclyn and I both agreed that Brussels was a rather incredible city, and though Barcelona is still in the lead as far as being our favorite city, Bruges definitely comes in at a very close second.  There are some places we visited that I wouldn’t bother going back to, but if the opportunity to go back to Bruges ever presents itself, I would pay good money to go back there.  It was everything I had heard it would be, and so much more.  There’s nothing quite like Christmas time in Bruges.

Christmas time in Bruges

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