Bruges is found in northern Belgium and is a wonderfully inviting and charming city for visitors. It is evident that Bruges cherishes its historical past offering some wonderfully preserved architectural treasures and museum collections throughout the city. Wander along the cobbled streets, rest in the tranquil parks and refresh in the wonderful cafes of the enchanting city centre, which has been added to the UNESCO World Heritage List.
THINGS TO DO AND SEE IN BRUGES
- Bruges is the one place that you can admire the world-famous collection of paintings by the Flemish Primitives: 14th – 20th fine art painters who have lived and worked in the city. The Bruges Museum is the title given to encompass the many different historical museums in the city offering a mixture of contemporary and fine art, archaeological finds, local furniture, silverware and traditional folklore artefacts.
- The Groeningemuseum is known as ‘the city museum of Fine Arts’ for its collection of paintings from the Flemish Primitives. The Diamantmuseum offers an insight into the world of diamond mining and polishing while the Hospitaalmuseum is the collective name for two historic hospitals, the 8th century Hospital of Saint John containing six paintings by Hans Memling and Our Lady of the potteries with its outstanding silverwork.
- The Basilica of the Holy Blood is a beautiful Gothic church on Burg Square. The church houses a vial of blood brought here after the crusades which is thought to be that of Jesus Christ. The highly renovated and lavish Gothic church also houses a heavy Romanesque-style chapel beneath not to be missed
- Bruges historic Markt is a large open square surrounded by medieval looking buildings and outdoor cafes and restaurants. At the centre lies a monument to the leaders of the Brugse Metten, leaders of the massacre of the French garrison in Bruges by local Flemish militia in 1302. This is also the place to catch a horse-drawn cart and a tour of the historic city. Overlooking the square is the famous Belfry with its 83 metre high tower, 366 steps and fantastic views of the city.
EATING OUT & NIGHTLIFE IN BRUGES
Belgium is famous for chocolate and Bruges has its fair share of chocolate shops and even the Choco-story Museum, a must for ardent chocolate fans. Eating out can be expensive in Bruges so one option is to wander off the main tourist streets and even consider asking a few locals for a recommendation.
GETTING AROUND IN BRUGES
The historic centre itself is well suited for walking offering charming cobbled streets, an encircling canal and wonderfully preserved city walls to wander along. A little further afield and a rented bike might offer the perfect solution, or apart from this there are also buses available that go the all the main tourist attractions.
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