Ghent or Bruges Belgium

The answer is both! Let me walk you through it.

Both Bruges and Ghent in Belgium offer enchanting experiences that showcase the country's rich history and architectural splendor.

Bruges, often referred to as the "Venice of the North," charms visitors with its picturesque canals, well-preserved medieval buildings, and cobblestone streets.

Ghent, on the other hand, boasts a vibrant atmosphere with its lively student population, stunning Gothic architecture, and dynamic cultural scene.

Both cities are amazing in their own right, but if you can only visit one, I recommend starting with Bruges. Its fairy-tale ambiance and compact size make it perfect for exploring on foot, allowing you to soak in its beauty at a leisurely pace.

If time permits, I highly recommend visiting both Bruges and Ghent, as each offers a unique glimpse into Belgium's rich cultural heritage and is sure to leave you spellbound.

Leave plenty of time in your itinerary to wander through the city's narrow, winding streets is a delightful experience. The architecture is beautifully preserved, and there are numerous cafes, shops, and restaurants to explore.

Bruges is a relatively small city of 118,000 people spanning just over 50 square miles.

Annually, the city welcomes about 8 million people who come explore its historic architecture, picturesque canals, and cultural treasures, making it one of Belgium's most visited destinations.

Best Waffle in Bruges

When in Belgium, indulging in a delicious waffle is an absolute must! In Bruges, you'll find numerous charming spots where you can savor this iconic treat.

Here are three suggestions!

1) Gingerbread
: Located in the heart of Bruges, Gingerbread offers a delightful selection of freshly baked waffles topped with an array of tempting toppings, from traditional whipped cream and strawberries to indulgent chocolate sauce and ice cream.

2) Chez Albert
: Nestled in a quaint alleyway near the Markt, Chez Albert is a beloved waffle stand renowned for its mouthwatering Liege waffles, which are dense, chewy, and caramelized to perfection. Grab one to enjoy as you stroll through the picturesque streets of Bruges.

3) The Old Chocolate House
: For a unique twist on the classic Belgian waffle, head to The Old Chocolate House, where you can indulge in a waffle smothered in rich, melted chocolate or topped with homemade pralines and whipped cream. Pair it with a cup of hot chocolate for the ultimate indulgence.

Bruges Bell Tower

The Belfry of Bruges, located in the Markt (Market Square) of Bruges, Belgium, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a symbol of the city's medieval prosperity. Standing at 272 feet (83 meters) tall, it offers panoramic views of Bruges and its surroundings from its top.

You can climb the 366 steps to the top for a breathtaking experience.

It is open every day of the week from 9am-8pm. Always double check the official website for any changes to the schedule. You can access the Belfry Tower information here.

As for pricing, admission fees for the Belfry of Bruges also vary, but they are usually quite reasonable.

You can expect to pay around €12 to €14 for adults, with discounts available for students, seniors, and children.

The Canals of Bruges

The city is famous for its network of canals, which you can explore by taking a boat tour.

These canals add to the city's charm and provide excellent views of the historic architecture.

As you glide along the tranquil canals, knowledgeable guides often provide insights into the city's history, pointing out key landmarks and sharing anecdotes that bring the past to life.

You certainly don't want to miss the boat ride! It's also the perfect chance to give your feet a rest from all the walking you've been doing.

I think the boat cruise would have to be one of my very favorite things to do in Bruges.

Check out GetYourGuide to find boat tours!

Bruges Belgium Chocolate Tour

Belgium is renowned for its chocolates and beers, and you'll find plenty of shops and breweries in Brügge where you can indulge in these treats.

I love chocolate shops! Go in and ask for samples to find your favorite before you buy! 

Souvenir shops

Even though the town is quaint and much smaller than Brussels, souvenir shops line the cobbled streets, offering an array of charming mementos that capture the city's medieval charm.

You can find everything from intricate lacework to exquisite handmade chocolates, making it easy to bring a piece of Brügge unique culture and heritage home with them.

Brügge offers a unique blend of history, architecture, and natural beauty, making it a must-visit destination for travelers interested in European culture and heritage.

Best Restaurants in Bruges

In Bruges, you'll never go hungry with its abundance of dining options, ranging from quaint bistros to upscale eateries.

Here are three top-rated restaurants to tantalize your taste buds:

1) De Stove:
With a stellar rating of 4.8 stars, De Stove is celebrated for its intimate atmosphere and exquisite Belgian cuisine. Located in a historic building, this restaurant offers a seasonal menu showcasing locally sourced ingredients prepared with finesse.

2) De Karmeliet:
Boasting a remarkable rating of 4.9 stars, De Karmeliet is a Michelin-starred restaurant renowned for its innovative gastronomy and impeccable service. Indulge in a culinary journey with their tasting menu, featuring creative dishes crafted with precision and flair.

3) Den Gouden Harynck:
With an impressive rating of 4.7 stars, Den Gouden Harynck is a hidden gem tucked away in the heart of Bruges. Specializing in French-Belgian fusion cuisine, this restaurant offers a refined dining experience with an emphasis on quality and elegance.

Our Lady Church Bruges

Our Lady Church in Bruges, Belgium, is a magnificent example of Gothic architecture dating back to the 13th century.

Constructed between the 13th and 15th centuries, this iconic church boasts a towering brick spire that dominates the city skyline.

Still in active use today, Our Lady Church is renowned for housing Michelangelo's famous sculpture, the Madonna and Child.

You can explore the church's awe-inspiring interior, adorned with stunning stained glass windows and intricate artwork, all free of charge.

Gruuthusemuseum tickets

It's often seen as a city frozen in time, allowing visitors to step back in history and appreciate the charm of a bygone era.

The Gruuthuse Museum is like stepping into a time machine. Housed within a beautifully restored medieval mansion, the museum's collection spans centuries, encompassing exquisite tapestries, intricate lacework, fine porcelain, and impressive works of Flemish art.

Stepping through its doors, visitors are transported to a bygone era, where the opulence of the Gruuthuse family, who once resided here, is palpable.

With its meticulously curated exhibits and stunning architectural surroundings, the Gruuthuse Museum stands as a must-visit destination for anyone seeking to immerse themselves in the rich tapestry of Belgian history and culture. Check out tickets here!

Distance Between Bruges and Ghent

The distance between Bruges and Ghent is approximately 31 miles (50 kilometers), making it a convenient journey by car, train, or bus, typically taking around 30-40 minutes.

Many tours departing from Brussels, Belgium's capital, offer day trips to both of these enchanting cities, providing a hassle-free way to explore their highlights.

Opting for a tour is an excellent choice if you don't have access to a car and prefer to avoid the hassle of driving yourself.

Having a guide on the tour can make your experience so much better by offering insights into the history, culture, and local attractions. They can also give you the inside scoop on the best local places to eat while you're out exploring.

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