If you are in Brussels, then at some point you’ll need to do a day trip from Brussels to Bruges. This calm and charming Flemish town is perfect for a little escapade from your busy life in the capital, and only a 1.5-hour drive or a bus ride away. Plus you can visit pretty much everything in a few hours.
Brussels to Bruges day trip: what to do when you get there
- Lounge by the Minnewater. It's romantic – some call it the Lake of Love.
- History and beer? Sounds like a great combination. Head to the De Halve Maan Brewery to learn why Belgian beer really is the best.
- Get your sugar fix at the Tonka Tearoom. It's difficult to walk past.
The language spoken in Bruges is Flemish (Dutch spoken in Belgium), but many locals understand English and French to some degree. In Flemish, the town is known as Brugge. Considered by UNESCO to be a World Heritage city, you’ll see many old European buildings of yesteryears in Bruges that are preserved in their pristine condition. Here are the top 3 things to do in Bruges, according to Spotahome.
3 must-see places on your day trip from Brussels to Bruges
1. Minnewater (Lake of Love), Wijngaardplein 1
If we need to pin down a must in Bruges, it is the Minnewater (Lake of Love). This place is perfect for couples (as evidenced by its name), but you can of course bond with your family and/or friends there. The cobbled streets are absolutely gorgeous where you can spend time to take a relaxing stroll. If you have all day, you can also visit the famous Saint John’s Hospital, Our Lady’s Church, City Hall, the Market Square and the Chapel of the Holy Blood. Bruges’ beautiful canals cannot be missed, either.
2. De Halve Maan Brewery, Walplein 26
De Halve Maan Breweryis the oldest surviving city brewery that’s still brewing beer in Bruges. It also functions as a beer museum and you can catch a glimpse of the beer-making process with a short tour. The entry ticket includes a drink of Brugse Zot or Straffe Hendrik and is served after the tour either outside of the brewery or indoors. Check out the website for further information.
3. Tonka, Walplein 18
Tonka must be our favorite place in all of Bruges and it’s on the same street as the aforementioned brewery. If you have a sweet tooth and fancy some afternoon coffee with waffles, this is your place! Their panna cotta is divine, but you can’t miss their mocha ice cream, either. The service is always superb, with friendly English-speaking waiters and waitresses. Their menu is also extremely flexible, which is perfect for diners with food allergies or special dietary requirements. Make sure you ask the waiters and/or waitresses about the Tonka specials, such as Tonka beans and puddings. You won’t regret it!
There are of course other remarkable places such as museums (Groeninge Museum, Choco-Story Museum, Diamant Museum, The Friet Museum) and churches (Onze Lieve Vrouwkerk, Jerusalem church), but if you haven’t gone to the 3 places mentioned above, you haven’t been to Bruges!
For more on tips on Brussels, check out this Brussels Hipster City Guide. And also check out our previous posts: Mini-guide to Eating and Drinking in Brussels, 5 Best Chocolatiers in Brussels & Top 5 Bars in Brussels for Beer Fans!
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