What to see in Belgium
Tourist attractions Bruges
Like a living fairytale, Bruges is Belgium’s most photogenic city and the capital of the West Flanders region. Home to cobblestone streets, canals and medieval clock towers, travelling to Bruges is like stepping back in time as much of the city feels as if it has remained since the medieval era.
One of the best-preserved cities in Europe, Bruges has become one of the most visited cities in Belgium in recent years, and for good reason! Whether you’re here for the enchanting architecture, romantic atmosphere or to discover the diverse flavours of Belgium beer, a city break to Bruges is a sure bet for a memorable trip!
After nightfall, the city is particularly spectacular, with its illuminated canals and quiet streets, whilst during the winter months, a light dusting of snow creates an even more magical cityscape. Although it might be tempting to visit Bruges on a day trip from Brussels, to experience the city at its best, be sure to stay the night to discover its wonderful eateries, quirky beer cafes and peaceful medieval squares once all the tourists have left for the day.
Home to an array of sights, from centuries-old towers, Gothic churches and charming town squares to fascinating art museums and traditional Belgian breweries, a trip to Bruges is an unmissable highlight of any Belgium tour. Furthermore, the city boasts a fantastic food scene, with plenty of chances to indulge in Belgian dishes such as chocolate-covered waffles and french fries, as well as brilliant shops for a slice of retail therapy.
Things to see in Bruges
No trip to Bruges is complete without contemplating the famous Belfort or Belfry Tower, at the heart of the city and the best-known landmark in Bruges. Towering 83 metres above the Market Square, if you are up for a challenge we recommend climbing the 366 steps up to the top for fantastic views across Bruges. Beware that the Belfry bell rings at regular intervals, and it can be quite a surprise if you’re standing at the top of the tower when it chimes!
In the shadow of the Belfry is charming Market Square, surrounded by colourful period buildings and the hub of the city. The atmosphere of the square is best enjoyed from one of the cafe terraces, where you can soak up the views of the medieval core of the city and people watch.
One of the best places to visit in Bruges for lovers of art is the Groeninge Museum, home to one of Belgium’s most complete collections of Belgian and Flemish art from the last six centuries. Here, you can admire the masterpieces of the greats such as Jan van Eyck, Hieronymus Bosch and Hugo van der Goes. This captivating museum is housed on the site of the medieval Eekhout Abbey.
Keep wandering through the enchanting streets of Bruges and you’ll come across the famous De Halve Maan Brewery. A brewery tour here is one of the best things to do in Bruges for beer aficionados. This brewery produces some of Belgium’s most famous beers, such as Brugse Zot, Straffe Hendrik and Blanche de Bruges, and taking a tour is a fascinating way to learn all the secrets behind these delicious Belgian beers. Operating for more than 500 years, if you don’t fancy a brewery tour, head straight to the on-site restaurant to enjoy the freshest beer in the city, unfiltered straight from the barrel!
One of the many architectural masterpieces to see on a tour of Bruges is the Church of our Lady. Dating back to the 13th and 14th centuries, this impressive church has the third largest brickwork tower in the world. Constructed in an eye-catching Gothic style, it’s instantly recognisable by the flying buttresses on its exterior.