Eurostar Bruges BreaksAlso called the little Venice for its abundance in complex waterways, Bruges, situated in Frances northern hemisphere, has one of Europe’s most well kept historical settings. The town is covered in relics like gabled homes that bring back memories of the cities once merchant revolved waterways. The waterways, which surround the city, are commonly used to give tours by boat around the city where you can view the ancient and otherworldly churches, tiny cobblestone paths between the buildings and stop off to indulge yourself in chocolate at one of the many local shops there. This is not all that Bruges has to offer during your city break either, explore the city in many ways by taking a foot, bike or horse buggy guided tour through centuries of history contained within Bruges.
Taking a city break to Bruges is easy when you can take a Eurostar train from London. Even though Eurostar does not go all the way to Bruges, you can purchase your ticket from London and do a quick switch to a top of the line Belgian inter city train in Brussels; all included in the price of your ticket. Once you switch trains, Bruges is only an additional Forty minutes from Brussels. From there, the rail station is conveniently located a short Fifteen minutes on foot from the heart of the city. There is always the option to take one of many buses or taxi cabs waiting around the station as well. There are many great places to see in Bruges once you get there and they are all easily accessible from within the center of the city. Bruges is great for a short break or you can plan a long one to take in all that it has to offer. Here are 5 places you wont want to miss on your trip to Bruges.
5 Places to See in Bruges:
The Market Square- Perhaps the first place you will want to plan on seeing is the Market Square. This square is found in the middle of Bruges surrounded by medieval buildings and homes which are commonly known for their roofs that have a stair like appearance reaching up to the skies above. The square is full of history which tells tales of when the forcing of separation from the Flemish was placed upon a French Belgium in the year Thirteen Hundred and Two; also, during the battle of the Golden Spurs. Other things found in the square are shopping, hotels, historical buildings and resterauants that offer anything your heart desires from seafood to sweets and fresh European beer. You will likely not see any cars driving through the market square since the stop of traffic back in 1994 but, it is likely you may see tour buses, bikes and electric scooters come strolling through.
The Belfry- Inside the market square, you will find the Belfry. This tower, over 750 years old and constructed in 1220, reaches 83 meters into the sky and served many purposes such as being a bell, watch tower and place of shop business sometime in the 13th century. The Belfry has an interesting background in that it caught on fire 3 times during its lifetime in which, each time it was repaired. This is what prompted a man by the name of Henry Wadsworth to create a poem about the building. The poem later became famous in connection with the Belfry. Walking up 366 stairs while hearing the musical bells echo within the walls, will reward you with a breathtaking panoramic scene of the city of Bruges.
The Church of Our Lady- If churches are an interest of yours, or not, this church is one you will want to visit for its famous sculptures, music and tombs. This church has a tower in which stands 122 meters and was constructed in the Thirteenth century. You can find a perfectly preserved sculpture designed by the famous late Italian artist, Michelangelo in the form of the Madonna and her child resting within this old church. Tombs of Charles the Bold and that of his daughter can be seen here as well.
Basilica of the Holy Blood- Another church in which contains some very rare relics of history, this church is said to hold in a tiny vial enclosed in a monument made from precious metals like Gold and Silver, the blood of Jesus himself. It is constructed of multiple levels containing relics, stone and multi-color stained glass. It dates back to the Twelve Hundreds where the tiny vial was delivered to the church by the Count of Flanders after, it was said to have been preserved by Joseph of Arimathea while in the process of cleaning Jesus’ body after death. Reenactment of this historical day can be seen in the month of May on Asuncion Day when, the towns members get into full costume and play out the scenes of the vial being delivered to the church.
Quasimodo Tours- These tours are run mostly by the locals who are very familiar with the culture and history surrounding Bruges. Tours include half and full day trips. One tour in particular, the Flanders Field tour, takes you through historic settings where famous battles took place during and around the first World War. You will visit places such as the cemeteries where soldiers are buried and even walk the same land they walked so many years ago like, Hellfire Corner. Things you will see also include dressing stations, ammunition findings and underground tunnels and bunkers used by the soldiers during the war.
If touring the war sites is not for you, a bike or boat tour through the city can be arranged where you can tour the local factories, shops and chocolate boutiques which are always a must stop for anyone visiting Bruges.
If you are looking for a place to stay in Bruges, hotels are plentiful and can be found in every district from the medieval to the new. Hotels in Bruges are quaint, cozy and have staff that are very welcoming to tourists. You can book a room/train combo offered by Eurostar from £100 per person.