Bruges lived up to its reputation as a fairytale city, even in the cold and mist of winter. We've just returned from a whirlwind weekend where we indulged in the finest chocolate and Belgian brews (separately, of course), found tranquility along the canals, and discovered medieval art and architecture at every turn. Here are just some of the highlights of our trip.
While we build out the Compass & Key destination guide for Bruges, here is a quick summary of our trip for you planners out there:
TIME OF YEAR: The first weekend of January, following the weekend of the New Year
TRAVEL: By train. Eurostar from London to Brussels - 2 hours; Brussels to Bruges - 1 hour (trains depart every 30 mins).
STAY: Hotel Orangerie, a former convent dating to the 15th century, which will be undergoing some renovations through early February. Ideal location, friendly staff and a fabulous breakfast.
EAT: While many restaurants were closed for a winter break, we thoroughly enjoyed traditional cuisine at Le Chef et Moi near our hotel, lunch at 't Zwarte Huis, with its vast beer selection in a historic setting, and a delightful breakfast at Salé et Sucré, a family-run tearoom. Of the many, MANY chocolate shops, don't miss the gourmet and creative options at BbyB.
WANDER RATING: 9/10. It's exceptionally easy to wander around Bruges, as the city area is so small. Everything is within a 10-20 minute walk.
Stay tuned for a complete destination guide with plenty of itineraries for wandering Bruges. In the meantime, find inspiration with our other destination guides in Europe and beyond to help you plan an incredible vacation.
See you on the road,