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Two (or three) Days in Bruges

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Bruges is a small but vibrant city, with lots of history, beautiful buildings, fantastic food and a delightful atmosphere. Regardless of your travel style and interests, Bruges will have something for you. But for the history or architecture lover, the city is a treasure! Here I'll try to share with you the experiences and tips from a weekend trip. This guide can be used in a two-days trip (arriving in the morning in one day and leaving in the day after at around 5PM) or a three-days trip. To make this possible, I've used the third day as a day to see the city as a whole, without the rush of a two-days trip. Enjoy!

Good for
  • History Buff
  • Art and Architecture Lover
  • Like a Local

14 Places

4 City Tips

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Map

14 Places

Day 1

'T Zand

Historic Sites

Burg Square

Points of Interest & Landmarks

Stadhuis

Points of Interest & Landmarks, Architectural Buildings

Basilica of the Holy Blood

Sacred & Religious Sites, Architectural Buildings, Historic Sites

Belfort

Architectural Buildings, Observation Decks & Towers, Points of Interest & Landmarks

Luc Vanlaere Harpist

Performances

The Markt

Points of Interest & Landmarks

Day 2

Minnewater Lake

Bodies of Water

Chips and Ice

Restaurants

Onze-Lieve-Vrouwekerk

Churches & Cathedrals

't Apostelientje

Gift & Speciality Shops

Jerusalem Chapel & Adornes Domain

Sacred & Religious Sites, Historic Sites

De Lange Muur

Restaurants

Day 3

Historic Centre of Brugge

Historic Sites

Andre A's City Tips

  • Try to save time and money having a sandwich for lunch on any of the several sandwiches stores around.
  • Walk around. The city is small, gorgeous and safe, and by walking you will find lots of hidden gems that you wouldn't otherwise.
  • Eat plenty of Waffles. They're omnipresent, and they're the best I ever had.
  • About everyone speaks English, from the taxi drivers to the shop clerks.
    Day 1
  • 'T Zand
    Historic Sites
    See more photos
    Andre A Says:

    If you're going to Bruges for a weekend and arriving there on a saturday, start your visit by this square. Each saturday morning an open market is held here, with lots and lots of food (from roasted chicken to cakes and other delicious things), clothing, bed and bath linen, packaged products, and lots of other things. It's the perfect place to have a breakfast after a long train journey, and as the prices are reasonable you will see lots of locals around.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Like a Local
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Shopping Fanatic
    • Family
    Tips
    • Only on saturdays, 8AM to 1PM
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #42 of 127 things to do in Bruges
    • It's all changed 29/09/2018
    • Interesting Square with good cafes and restaurants 18/09/2018
    • 'T Zand
    Address:
    Zuidzandstraat 8000
    Bruges 8000
    Belgium
  • Burg Square
    Points of Interest & Landmarks
    See more photos
    Andre A Says:

    After the feast at the T'Zand Market, it's time to go to the Burg Square, This is the heart of the city and, if you like architecture, the place to be. Lots of exquisite buildings around the square to take pictures of, and some to visit. Special attention to the two buildings listed below: the Town Hall and the Basilica of the Holy Blood. Obs: If you watched the movie "In Bruges" (2008), they mention the Basilica, but the scenes that are said to be in the basilica were, in fact, filmed at the Jerusalem Church (also listed in this guide) since they couldn't get the proper authorization to shot the scenes in the real place.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • There are food stands around the square. The french fries with mayonnaise is fantastic - and the prices are cheap!
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #4 of 127 things to do in Bruges
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Nice and scenic! 08/12/2018
    • Simply beautiful 05/12/2018
    • Burg Square
    Address:
    Hoogstraat and Breidelstraat, Brugge, B8000
    Bruges
    Belgium
    Other:
  • Stadhuis
    Points of Interest & Landmarks, Architectural Buildings
    See more photos
    Andre A Says:

    In the Burg you will find lots of fantastic buildings, and this is one of them - maybe the most iconic. It's the City Hall and was build in 1376.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • Check the times if you intend to visit the inside of the building.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #16 of 127 things to do in Bruges
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • beautiful city hall, not a history museum 29/11/2018
    • Nice visit - good audioguide! 18/11/2018
    • Stadhuis
    Address:
    Burg 12
    Bruges 8000
    Belgium
    Phone:
    +32 50 44 87 11
    Price range:
    USD 8 - USD 8
    Other:
  • Basilica of the Holy Blood
    Sacred & Religious Sites, Architectural Buildings, Historic Sites
    See more photos
    Andre A Says:

    Another must-click in the Burg Square, and in this case a mus-visit too. Beautiful church, very famous because it holds a supposedly piece of Jesus Christ's clothing with a blood stain.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • Check the opening times.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #9 of 127 things to do in Bruges
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Worth a visit 06/12/2018
    • Nice quick visit. Must see in Bruges. 02/12/2018
    • Basilica of the Holy Blood
    Address:
    Burg 13
    Basilica of the Holy Blood
    Bruges 8000
    Belgium
    Phone:
    +32 50 33 67 92
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    10:00 am - 12:00 pm
    2:00 pm - 5:00 pm
    Other:
  • Belfort
    Architectural Buildings, Observation Decks & Towers, Points of Interest & Landmarks
    See more photos
    Andre A Says:

    Once you've seen the Burg, it's time to see the city from above. Let me start saying that, if you are able to climb the stairs, you MUST visit this tower. That said, let me elaborate a little: The Belfry (or Belfort) is a huge tower that started to be built in the 1200s. Through the years, additions were made until it reached the current state, with almost 90 meters (295 feet) in height. As it is a very popular attraction and there's a limit of simultaneous visitors for safety reasons, the lines to enter are huge (1 to 2 hours waiting in line depending on the time of the day and the year). Apart from that, keep in mind that you will need to climb 366 steps that are narrower and narrower as closer to top you get. On the other hand, it's possible to rest periodically at the several levels of the tower (or, in other words, you don't need to climb all the 366 steps at once). But, once you've reached the top, everything will pay off! The view from there is absolutely fantastic! You can see the entire city and beyond, in 360 degrees, and take fantastic pictures. A plus is that you will be presented with the story of the tower clock, and the real, original mechanism - that is still in use. Be prepared to put your hands to your ears when they ring!

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • Make sure you will have the energy to climb the steps before starting to.
    • Don't forget to take your camera to the top!
    Plan to stay:
    2-3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #14 of 127 things to do in Bruges
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Is what it says on the tin. 09/12/2018
    • Higher and higher 09/12/2018
    • Belfort
    Address:
    Markt 7
    Bruges 8000
    Belgium
    Phone:
    +32 50 44 87 11
    Price range:
    USD 16 - USD 16
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    9:30 am - 6:00 pm
    Other:
  • Luc Vanlaere Harpist
    Performances
    See more photos
    Andre A Says:

    And, after all this effort, it's time to relax! Mr. Luc Vanlaere is a very talented musician that hold free concerts almost every day, in multiple times, at the "SITE OUD SINT JAN" (Mariastraat 38). You can check the times here: http://harpmuziek.be/ The music is very calm and relaxing, the atmosphere is great and Mr. Luc is a very pleasant host. He speaks at least English, Spanish and Flemish (these are the languages he spoke on the day I was at the concert), and explain a lot about the instruments, the music and his inspiration. A real must-go! At the end of the concert, you will be invited (but NOT compelled) to donate what you think you should for the show, or to buy his CDs (what I did). But if you don't want to, you can just leave.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    Tips
    • Get there at least 15 minutes early to get a seat. The concert takes about 40 minutes.
    • Small children can be a problem, since the concert is held in a closed space and silence is required.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #1 of 4 Concerts & Shows in Bruges
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Relaxing musical activity in Bruges! 09/12/2018
    • A breathtaking experience 08/12/2018
    • Luc Vanlaere Harpist
    Address:
    Congresscentre Oud St Jan Mariastraat 38
    Mariastraat 38
    Bruges 8000
    Belgium
    Phone:
    +32 475 74 16 35
    Other:
  • The Markt
    Points of Interest & Landmarks
    See more photos
    Andre A Says:

    After a long day exploring and walking around, it's dinner time! As this is your first day in Bruges, head to The Markt and choose one from the dozens of restaurants and bars in and around the square. After dinner, take a stroll to see Bruges at night - the lights give an entirely different appearance to the buildings.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Nightlife Seeker
    From the community
    Ranked #7 of 127 things to do in Bruges
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Christmas market visit- disappointing shopping experience 09/12/2018
    • Terrible markets 09/12/2018
    • The Markt
    Address:
    Markt
    Bruges 8000
    Belgium
    Other:
  • Day 2
  • Minnewater Lake
    Bodies of Water
    See more photos
    Andre A Says:

    It's your second day in Bruges, and you want to start slowly. So, head to this fantastic park! Believe me, if you take 100 pictures you will have 100 postcards. The place is absolutely beautiful, with lots of ducks, gooses and other animals, the wonderful Minnewater lake and lots of trees and flowers. You will be able to see a lot of locals, too, as they head here to enjoy the nature.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Take your time, enjoy, breath, relax.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #5 of 127 things to do in Bruges
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Nice for a stroll 07/12/2018
    • if you know 29/11/2018
    • Minnewater Lake
    Phone:
    +32 50 37 26 09
    Other:
  • Chips and Ice
    Restaurants (Belgian, Cafe, Fast food, European)
    See more photos
    Andre A Says:

    If your breakfast is already gone, stop in this little fast-food restaurant in the way back to the city center. They serve delicious sandwiches, fantastic Waffles (as everywhere in Bruges) and have a second floor where you can sit and enjoy your food. You'll probably need to wait a few minutes in the line, but no more than that - and you will save time and money having lunch here instead of a restaurant.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    Tips
    • Eat plenty of Waffles, not only here, but everywhere. They are fantastic!
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #524 of 665 restaurants in Bruges
    • Awful - do not go! 18/11/2018
    • Had an average breakfast 18/11/2018
    • Chips and Ice
    Address:
    Katelijnestraat 7
    Bruges 8000
    Belgium
    Phone:
    +32 477 47 86 69
    Other:
  • Onze-Lieve-Vrouwekerk
    Churches & Cathedrals
    See more photos
    Andre A Says:

    After lunch, stop in this church. Behind the church you will see, in a little square, some benches, statues and normally a musician playing violin or acoustic bass. On the other side of the square, you will find a little, but famous, bridge called Bonifacius Bridge, or The Lover's Bridge. It's a fairly recent bridge (dated from 1910), but it looks much older than that and is a very picturesque place.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Hidden Gems
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • The bridge is normally packed, but if you have a chance ask someone to take a picture of you and your significant other on the bridge.
    From the community
    Ranked #20 of 127 things to do in Bruges
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • The michelangelo-statue is not visible right now 18/11/2018
    • Closed for construction 13/11/2018
    • Onze-Lieve-Vrouwekerk
    Address:
    Mariastraat
    Bruges 8000
    Belgium
    Phone:
    +32 50 44 87 11
    Price range:
    USD 8 - USD 8
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    9:30 am - 5:00 pm
    Other:
  • 't Apostelientje
    Gift & Speciality Shops
    See more photos
    Andre A Says:

    Now it's time to go shopping! Apart from the excellent chocolates and Waffles, there's another thing Bruges is famous for: the laces. The problem is that you will find lots and lots of machine-made (or even cheap imported) laces in most stores, trying to pass as an "original handmade Bruges lace". If you want to make sure you will get the real, handmade, quality ones, head to this shop. Just be advised: the prices are not cheap. They can go from 15 or 20 Euros for the smaller works to even thousands of Euros for the big, century-old ones. But even if you don't intend to buy anything, pay a visit to the store and look around.

    Good for
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    Tips
    • On your way to the shop, enjoy the walk. As the shop is not in the center, you will have the chance to see a calm, local Bruges.
    • The store is small and with lots of valuable, easy to damage works. So, if you have small children with you, take care.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #7 of 85 Shopping in Bruges
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Wonderland for lace enthusiasts. 24/10/2018
    • Amazing lace & owner 07/10/2018
    • 't Apostelientje
    Address:
    Balstraat 11
    Bruges 8000
    Belgium
    Phone:
    +32 50 33 78 60
    Other:
  • Jerusalem Chapel & Adornes Domain
    Sacred & Religious Sites, Historic Sites
    See more photos
    Andre A Says:

    In the same part of the city, and close to the store, you will find this unique, peculiar church. It's a private-owned church built in 1470 by a rich pilgrim recently returned from Jerusalem. The church is still owned by the same family, that maintains and still hold services there and sometimes are there to show the church for you. But what put this church apart is it's architecture and interior, absolutely different from what you are used to. It's a little pricey for it's size (7 Euros), but worth the visit!

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • Watch the video explaining the church origins before entering the church itself. You will enjoy the visit even more.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #13 of 127 things to do in Bruges
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Small but delightful 09/11/2018
    • Lovely chapel 24/10/2018
    • Jerusalem Chapel & Adornes Domain
    Address:
    Peperstraat 1-3
    Bruges 8000
    Belgium
    Phone:
    +32 50 33 88 83
    Other:
  • De Lange Muur
    Restaurants (Chinese, Asian)
    See more photos
    Andre A Says:

    Another day gone, it's dinner time again. If you want to spend less than the night before and eat good food with an excellent service, you will like this place. Even being a chinese food restaurant, they have plenty of options to chose from, and you will certainly find something you like even if you're not that into chinese food. The atmosphere is excellent too, and the staff very courteous.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #406 of 665 restaurants in Bruges
    • I cannot understand that this place is in the center of the town 14/10/2018
    • Fair Price, Good Food, & So-so Service 26/08/2018
    • De Lange Muur
    Address:
    Sint-Amandsstraat 11
    Bruges 8000
    Belgium
    Phone:
    +32 50 33 27 19
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    11:30 am - 2:30 pm
    6:00 pm - 10:30 pm
    Other:
  • Day 3
  • Historic Centre of Brugge
    Historic Sites
    See more photos
    Andre A Says:

    If you're staying a third day, use the last one to walk around without the rush normally associated with short stays. Visit the stores, stop at peculiar buildings, take pictures, eat some more chocolates and waffles... Enjoy! Just be careful to not miss your train!

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    From the community
    Ranked #1 of 127 things to do in Bruges
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Christmas market 09/12/2018
    • Beautiful 09/12/2018
    • Historic Centre of Brugge
    Other:
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