Europe

Bruges: architecture, chips and chocolate

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We continue with the stories of trip to Flanders we did at the end of summer 2013. Today we are going to Ghent until Witches To visit in one day this beautiful city. Are you about to discover with us the most beautiful city in Flanders? Come on!

In less than forty minutes, the train linking the Daamport station in Ghent left us at the central Bruges station. We came to one of the most beautiful cities not only in Flanders, but in Europe, and the expectations were very high. The station is very close to the center, so we get some maps at the tourist office at the exit and prepare to squeeze as much juice as possible into the city and, above all, touring the old town. Attentive that the tourist itinerary begins!

A short ten minutes walk, we cross the garden where the lake of love and its famous swans, which are a symbol of the city. Beyond we find one of the first attractions: the Begijnhof or Beguinaje. This beguinage was built in 1245 to house the widows and orphans of the Crusaders who took the old Constantinople. Currently, in the typical houses of the fifteenth-nineteenth century reside the nuns of the order of San Benito. The enclosure, next to a very large and very careful garden, closes every day at half past six in the afternoon. Take note!

We leave behind the peace of the beguinage to enter the historic city center. No wonder that Bruges is a world heritage site, because all the architecture of the historic center is beautiful and gives you the feeling of being walking through a fairytale city. One of the most photographed points of the city for its beauty is the Rosary pier (Rozenhoedkaai). From there we could contemplate a panoramic view with the Church of Our Lady in the background, which has a tower over 120 meters high. It is the second tallest brick tower in the world and stands out among the Bruges canals and historic buildings.

Very close, we find the Burg square and the city hall of Bruges, one of the nerve centers of the city along with the nearby market square. Obviously, one of the most important buildings in the square is the town hall and, as it was Saturday morning, we saw several wedding parties. They invited guests to links of all kinds: traditional, medieval, from the 40s and even fairy tale with carriage in the style of Cinderella (!).

He Bruges town hall It is a beautiful building of Gothic style, which contrasts with the different styles that we can find in the square: the Romanesque of the basilica of San Basilio, the Renaissance style in the old Scribe, the baroque in the Prebostazgo and the classicism in the stately house from the Franconato de Brujas, there is nothing. It is like a book of art history in three dimensions.

Taking the Breidelstraat we get to Markt, the market square and one of the areas with more movement of visitors from the center of Bruges. Here we could see the beautiful guild houses, as we had already done in our visit to Antwerp, before the omnipresence of the Belfort tower, erected centuries before. The bell tower is one of the best viewpoints of the city and from its 83 meters high we can enjoy the beautiful view of the historic center of Bruges.

Upon arriving at the square we were a little tired of wandering around the center, so we decided to sit down to have some traditional French fries in a frenzy of the square. It was a serious mistake, because our next stop was the Bruges potato chip museum and, why deny it, one of the main objectives of our trip to Flanders.

Goal achieved!

And why visit the Fried Potato Museum? Because, according to our philosophy, any excuse is good for a trip: either to visit the Tuscan scenarios of the book New Moon of the saga «Twilight» or for travel to Disneyland Paris and Neverland to celebrate the 30th anniversary of our particular Peter Pan. Our geeks are as fun as any other.

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