There are many cities that have lovely areas. However, Brugge, in Belgium, is different. The whole place is amazing! If you don’t believe me, believe UNESCO, they deemed this city a world heritage site in 2000. Everywhere you look there are fairytale buildings and intriguing streets just begging you to
explore. In addition, the place is laced with swan-dappled canals sparkling in the sunlight. A large canal and a park complete with windmills surrounds the whole city. It is truly one of the world’s prettiest cities!
We were lucky enough to rent an apartment for a few days very close to the centre of town, within the city walls. It was in an old building that has been lovingly renovated to include both the dark timber oak beams and the bright white of modern architecture. We even had a private tower where we could climb up a spiral staircase and fling open the shutters to view the city displayed below us.
During the day, the quiet of the cobbled street below us was often interrupted by the nostalgic sound of horse’s hooves as a carriage full of tourists rolled by. I loved the way the clip-clop echoed up to our fourth floor apartment, making the bright, rhythmic trot sound almost like the horse was splashing through a stream.
Jim and I explored one of the restored windmills and were blown away by the complexity of the inner workings. We tend to forget all the work that went into making “our daily bread.”
Being such a magical spot, you can imagine there are lots of tourists. However, we found this to be a bonus. We spent a great afternoon sitting outside at a restaurant in the Burg Square (the secondary square, but in my humble opinion, even lovelier than the main Markt Square) just people watching. So many nations go by! And many of them brought a wide variety of dogs with them too. And I even got to know each horse and carriage individually. I loved the beautiful big black one with the high-stepping hooves and the pricked up ears.
Belgium is known for lace, chocolate, waffles, and beer. Does this make Brugge an interesting, if fattening, place to wander about? You bet it does!