Visiting Bruges is an experience in itself. The city is wonderful to walk through, with something to do at every corner. Everyone can find something to do in Bruges, from children to adults, from men to women, from lovers to singles. If you visit Bruges in a limited amount of time, I have made a list of the most wanted 3 things to experience in Bruges.
Who doesn’t know that Bruges is famous for its chocolate? You must have lived under a rock or something. Bruges is not only a major chocolate producer, but they also know how to sell themselves.
So, they have taken a former chocolate factory, re-vamped it and created a museum of chocolate history. It is incredibly interested to see how far way back the history of the chocolate goes and it is great to visit, especially since you can eat a lot of chocolate while doing it 😊 😊
In a well-organized manner, the journey starts with the very beginning – the Mayans and the Aztecs who, in order to enhance their already mystical existence, used a type of chocolate drink as a gift for the gods. It wasn’t long before the Spanish conquered the territories of the Mayans and the Aztecs and discovered the chocolate drink, which they found unpalatable at first, but which they soon started to enjoy. The drink had so much success when it was brought back in Europe, that various people of Europe, among which the Belgians, started playing with it and create various products.
Of course, throughout the journey, you can taste various types of chocolate, from the traditional dark one, to the white chocolate and milk chocolate. The journey ends with the personal history of Belgium in the chocolate making art and you can also attend a workshop, to see live how various types of chocolate are created.
The workshop is very interested and for the kids it is super entertaining. To tell you the truth, we adults were just as entertained, but, by the end of it, we were already so full of chocolate that we couldn’t try out the end product of the workshop 😊 😊
When you think Belgium, you definitely hear “beer” amongst others. Well, Belgium is a major beer producer of Europe. So… how could they not have a “beer museum”?
The museum is great! You are given tablets and you have to scan the exhibits to find out more about how beer is made. What I really found interesting was that the tour offers you numerous smaller experience, such as smelling various herbs used to make bear or feeling the texture of various types of hop, the plant from which beer is made. At the end, you can learn about the entire process of making the beer.
What I also liked was the various types of beer the museum was talking about, each with its own history, each created in a different way. Some of those were created by mistake and the recipe was kept throughout generations before actually being used. The experience even teaches you how to pair various types of beer with different foods. I was surprised to find out that this is a science as well, just like wine pairing. It required a certain amount of knowledge and it takes specific classes to develop the skill.
The experience could not be complete without an actual beer tasting. I loved the museum tour, but I adored the beer tasting. You have 3 samples included in your museum ticket, so you can try out from the over 10 types of craft beer that the beer bar has to offer.
I enjoyed the smoked type in particular, because of the woody flavor. But, I must admit, I would have tasted all of them. The ones I had tasted wonderful! 😛
Bruges is known as the “Venice of the North”, due to its numerous canals. Of course, as in the original Venice, you can take boat trips. There are many companies offering boat rides, so you will for sure find something that you like.
The route is pretty much the same for all the companies – the difference is always made by the captain of the boat. Our captain was pretty funny, telling us short stories throughout the ride.
Most of the houses that were built on the canal were old and now belonged to richer families or had been turned into hotels. There were built in typical Flemish architecture and it was great to see them, even if just in passing. The people of Bruges were very proud of their houses and you can see how well taken care of these were.
As in Venice, there are bridges across the canals, where lovers meet and exchange kisses. It’s wonderful to see all the greenery and well preserved architecture, all while the breeze of the canal caresses your hair (yeap, the boat trip makes you pretty romantic, even if you are not usually like that 😊)) ).
The boat trip is rather cheap, compared to others I tried – 8 EUR for a one hour ride. I can tell you that one hour is enough to satisfy your curiosity about the boat trip and to see some cool things down the canals.
I had only a day to spend in Bruges, but I would really love to go back and stay more – there are so many other things to do and experience in Bruges. Who knows… 😊