Our Day in Bruges

When we were planning our short stay in Belgium, one of the places that kept popping up was Bruges. I had heard great things about it so it was something Mrs. ATX Jetsetter and I wanted to make sure was in our itinerary. Fortunately, Bruges is extremely easy to get to from Brussels as trains run almost hourly throughout the day.

We started our day at Brussels-Centraal station and hopped aboard our Bruges bound train. It was extremely packed at this hour as the train had originated at the airport but by the time we deposited passengers at Brussels-South we were able to find some seats.

Brussels-Centraal Station Platform

Aside from two extremely loud and rude American women, the trip out was pleasant and we chatted for a while with a father/son who were returning home from a trip. After about an hour our train rolled into Bruges and we headed off towards the city center. We didn’t have any real plans so we just followed the path along the river towards town and eventually found ourselves on a busy pedestrian street lined with shops.

a water way with a bridge and buildings
a group of people walking around a building
a stone road with a statue and people walking around
a horse drawn carriage with a person in a hat

Mrs. ATX Jetsetter and I spent some time popping in and out of the various shops but didn’t see anything that we had to have. Getting hungry, we headed towards the Grote Markt which was buzzing and surrounded by restaurants.

a group of people walking on a street
a group of people walking down a street
a large group of people outside of Bruges
a large brick building with a clock tower with Belfry of Bruges in the background

All of the restaurants on the square were packed and charging prices in line with their prime locations, so we ducked down a side street to look for a quieter place to grab lunch. We found a small square along the Sint-Amandsstraat that had a few restaurants surrounding it and it was a much quieter area, just a block from the Grote Markt.

a street with tables and chairs and trees and buildings
a street with tables and chairs and people walking on the street

We grabbed a table at Restaurant Beethoven and ordered some local beer while we perused the menu.

Brugse Zot Beer in Glass

After ordering, the tables around us started to fill in and by the time that our mains arrived the square was packed with people enjoying lunch. I had a delicious order of fish and chips which paired well with the local beer.

Plate of Fish and Chips from Restaurant Beethoven Bruges Belgium

Stuffed from lunch we walked back through the square and headed out the north side into a quieter, more residential part of the city. We walked along the Spiegelrei which eventually led us to the canal encircling the city.

a large building with a clock tower in the middle of Belfry of Bruges
a group of people outside a restaurant
a group of people in a plaza with a large building
a group of people in a plaza with flags and a statue
a building with many flags
a group of people in a street with a statue and people in the background
a colorful flowers next to a river

We took a leisurely stroll along the canal towards the southern part of the old town, stopping along the way to take some photos of the brightly colored buildings and flowers that were in bloom. Eventually, we made it to the Rosary Quay (Rozenhoedkaai) where canal tour boats were coming and going to take tourists on a ride around town.

a row of buildings next to a body of water with Bruges in the background
a boat on the water
a canal with a bridge over it and a building with ivy on it
a river with buildings and trees
a group of people in boats on a river
a boat on a river with buildings in the background

A short walk from the Rosary Quay, down a quiet side street, was the Bourgogne des Flandres Brewery and we stopped in to check it out.

Bourgogne des Flandres Brewery Entrance

After ordering a flight of beer from the bar, they only have 6 beers so you’re able to try them all, we found a table outside along the canal. We had a great view of the boats going by as well as a family of swans who had discovered they could eat pretty well thanks to the tourists here. We were seated at a long table and eventually joined by a group of friends from England who were spending a week biking around Belgium. We chatted with them for a while and swapped stories of our travels over the delicious, local beers.

a man standing behind a counter in a bar
a row of glasses of beer
a river with a group of people walking by it
a swan and ducklings in water

A little after 3:00p we bid adieu to our new friends and headed out in search for some waffles. We didn’t have to hunt for long as we found the House of Waffles just around the corner. They had a line out into the street but thankfully that was just for to-go orders and we were quickly shown to a table on the rear patio.

House of Waffles Bruges Belgium Exterior

The restaurant had an extensive menu and both the décor on the walls and the menu featured famous people from around the world with their corresponding waffle.

a book with a picture of two men
a wall with pictures of men and a man on it

I ordered the Classico with a Liege style waffle and Mrs. ATX Jetsetter had the Cherry Delight with a Brussels style waffle. They came out deconstructed which allowed us to build the waffle to our choosing which I appreciated. Both of our waffles were delicious and I ate way more than I should have but I couldn’t be stopped!

a book with food on it
a waffle with ice cream and syrup on a plate
a plate of waffles and whipped cream
a waffle with ice cream and chocolate syrup on a plate

Full from the waffles, we started slowly making our way back towards the train station. Mrs. ATX Jetsetter stopped to do some shopping and picked up some souvenirs for our families back home.

a group of people walking down a street
a display of chocolates and candies

With trains running almost every hour, our shopping stroll meant we had roughly 45 minutes until the next train back to Brussels so we stopped for one final beer on a patio on the ‘t Zand.

Beers on a Patio in Bruges Belgium

Fully hydrated, we made the short walk back to the station to catch the 4:58p train back to Brussels.

a group of people walking in a plaza
a group of people standing on train tracks

While we could have spent longer in Bruges, we felt that we were able to get a good experience of the city during our day trip. If you find yourself nearby I highly recommend taking a day trip, or spending a short overnight in the city. Should our travels bring us over this way again, we would happily return to Bruges!

In this Trip Report

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