Discovering Bruges on my own

Walking around in Bruges for ages made me hungry and tired. I really needed to rest and what better way to do that than with the typical Belgian waffles? I had looked up a couple of places on where to go, but two were closed so I ended up in the third one. At least I saw some awesome streets while searching for these places, then again almost everything in the city looked awesome.

the little streets of Bruges

Lizzies’ Wafels was a great place to stop and enjoy a rhubarb soda and a strawberry waffle. The size of it was a bit over dimensional but I managed half of it. I still wanted to have an appetite for a late lunch.

time for a break @Bruges

when in Bruges, eat waffle

But before lunch I needed to explore some more. I started with the Basilica of the Holy Blood, where there was a ceremony of showing the “holy blood”. The blood was not so impressive for a non-believer but the church was quite beautiful. I especially loved the stained glass windows. When I walked outside there were people sitting everywhere just staring at their phones. I guess there must have been free wi-fi (maybe sponsored by God?).

Basilica of the Holy Blood @Bruges

in front of the Basilica of the Holy Blood @Bruges

My next stop was the Burg museum to see the rooms of the former City Hall. Especially the Gothic Hall was exceptionally beautiful, I really liked murals.

City Hall @Bruges

City Hall @Bruges

Then it was time again to sit down and see Bruges from the water. Since the line-up for the boat was a bit longer than I expected, I decided to have my mussels first. Which was a pretty good idea since right around the corner of the boat stop was a small fish shop that also had a restaurant. Den Gouden Karpel was in the end an excellent choice, here I had the best mussels on all my trip (also at a great price)! The mussels here were delicious and without sand. I had them with sand when I later tried them somewhere else.

mussels in Bruges

Fortified with a beer, I bought my ticket for the boat ride and made the 30 minutes round-trip. It was nice to see but the captain/tour guide talked with such an annoying fake accent in English/French/Dutch that by the end of the tour I was ready to throw my shoes at him. At least the gardens right next to the canal made up for all his talking. I wonder how it feels to live right next to the water here? Does it ever smell bad or is there flooding? It definitely looks amazing though.

on the canals of Bruges

on the canals of Bruges

on the canals of Bruges

on the canals of Bruges

on the canals of Bruges

on the canals of Bruges

on the canals of Bruges

At the end of the tour I walked back to the Church of our Lady to see Michelangelo’s sculpture Madonna with child and also the tombs of Charles the Bold and his daughter Mary. Very impressive at least for me because the picture with the Madonna is a bit out of focus.

tombs of Mary of Burgundy and Charles the Bold @Bruges

Madonna with child from Michelangelo @Bruges

The weather was warm and sunny and invited me to stop for another beer which I enjoyed while reading my book. From time to time though I had to look up to just enjoy the view.

afternoon break @Bruges

local beer @Bruges

Going back to the hostel I was greeted by a smell that would have woken the dead when I entered the room. I opened the window and let fresh air into the room enjoying another beautiful view. The house across from me had music written on its facade.

the view from my room @Bruges

After dinner I “rolled” into town to party a bit. The guide this morning had told us that all summer long there were parties which culminated in this big one tonight. Didn’t want to miss it of course. There was dancing and DJs and silent disco and what not. It looked as if the whole city had come downtown. Click here to see the dancing.

Later that night when I came back from dinner I learned that it was my room-mate who stank. Personal hygiene was not high on her priority list. So even though the first day I was lucky sleeping alone, the second night was a real night at a hostel. What can I say? In the end I just opened the window and fell asleep. Yours, Pollybert

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