Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Brugge: Ein Märchenstadt // Bruges: A Fairytale City

April 11, 2015

My final trip over spring break was a day trip to Bruges and Brussels, two of the most well known cities in Belgium. CB and I took (yet another) overnight bus ride both ways, making for one of the most exhausting weekends I've yet experienced.

We arrived in Bruges early Saturday morning and were given until lunch to explore the city. With the chilly, overcast weather and the near complete lack of tourists present on the streets, Bruges truly did feel like "beautiful fairytale stuff" (to quote the Colin Farrell comedy In Bruges). After being greeted by the ever present swans, we stopped at Cafe Cafe for some incredible coffee and croissant action before making our way to the main city square. We meandered the streets, relishing the calm atmosphere surrounding the city. With only a few others around, I felt like any unnecessary noises would disrupt the town's spirit, and I was overly cautious about speaking too loudly.

As time went on, we saw more and more people, until we eventually came across an open air market full of food stands and antiques sellers. We did a bit of shopping ourselves, singling out gifts to take back to our families. Though there are a number of sites to see in Bruges, we instead opted to walk along the canals and cobblestone streets, admiring the architecture and the serene nature of the city. I was not expecting much from Bruges as my only experience with the city was from films, but to my surprise it has become one of my favourite European cities that I've visited. If I ever return to Belgium, I intend to put Bruges at the top of my list of places to see.

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