Today we began the day at the weekly market in the Brugge town square.The fruit, vegetables, cheese, meat, and flowers were all so fresh! We didn’t buy anything as we had just finished breakfast at the hotel, but if we were locals we’d be regulars at the market. From there we went to the top of the town belfry–the big tower with a clock and carillon. It was a bit of a hike up the narrow stairs but worth it for the view of the town.
After the hike up we took advantage of the free bikes at the hotel. What we thought might be a short little trip to Damme, about 6 km away, turned into a fun 35 mile exploration. Belgium has miles and miles of bike lanes, most separated from traffic. They are all numbered and allow one to explore the backroads, farm houses, and small villages.
We headed north to the border of Belgium and the Netherlands. In the town of Sluis we got fresh croissants, ham, cheese and drinks and ate lunch along a beautiful canal. At that point we discovered that there are detailed local biking maps, so we bought one. The map lead us to the North Sea! And, did you know that Belgium has beach resorts? We rode along the boardwalk for miles before we decided to head back inland and to our home in Brugge. What a day!
Tonight there will be a carillon concert in the square. We didn’t even know what that was until we got here but now we know they are intricate church-like bells. We’ll report back tomorrow.
The picture below shows Steve with a few more beers.
He has challenged himself to try a different kind of Belgian beer at each stop and he wants me to take his picture. So, here is the evidence. The last photo was taken at the oldest pub in Brugge, established in 1515.