Belgium - Brugge, Ghent and Brussels
What she thought
Belgium was added to our trip to Europe because we had been in The Netherlands and were headed to Paris. Since we were driving through we decided to check out three of it's famous cities. They were each only 45 min apart so it was easy to make it to all 3 in a day. Did we see everything? Absolutely not but we saw enough to know that Belgium is a great place to visit. These cities had such personality. Brugge and Ghent both have these beautiful canals that run through the city. You can see the city by boat on these canals if you would like. Of course, chocolate is everywhere and it's delicious!!! The Belgians definitely get my vote for the best chocolate. In Brugge they are famous for lace making. Watch the video below that I filmed of a woman showing us how she makes lace. It's amazing. In Ghent we visited a 830 year old castle which was awesome! And we finished off in Brussels, more chocolate, confections, Belgian waffles... soooooo yummy. Thank goodness you walk everywhere in these cities so you can burn a few of the calories off!!
To sum it up, Brugge and Ghent were much quainter that Brussels of course. Brussels is a modern city and the capital of the European Union. Though Brussels' Grand Place is old, it still has a modern hustle bustle about it. I'm glad we decided to check these cities out and I hope to get back to Brugge, especially, one day and take a boat on the canals.
What he thought
I have always said that cities have personalities all their own. It is clear after visiting Brussels, Ghent and Brugges that they are sibling cities that with a common heritage but they also have unique interests and abilities all their own.
Brugges well deserves it "Venice of the North" title considering the canals and foot bridges. It has an understated charm and relaxed atmosphere that I would imagine is similar to Amsterdam.
We only stayed long enough to have a quick look around the central square and to visit a few shops. We did manage to find a spot to have authentic Belgian waffles (that changed us forever).
The shops were quite nice. They are famous, of course, for their sweets and for lace (of all things).
Ghent is a bit more serious. The castle in the center if Ghent has within a museum of torture that is not for the squeamish.
Brussels is the most sophisticated of the three cities. The architecture of the buildings in its central square are extraordinary.