Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Eurotrip 2018 - Day 6 (8/10/2018) - To Bruges

I don't work out while on vacation, but I've traveled with a few people who do.  Fran is one of them.  She went to work out @ 7:25am while I continued sleeping, and woke me up @ 8:15am.  After a shower and breakfast at the hotel (which once again provided a good selection), we walked to Brussels-Central to catch the 10:19 train to Bruges.  The train ride took somewhere around 70 minutes, and the train was pretty full with day-trippers.

After arriving in Bruges we walked from the train station to the Academie Hotel.  Our streak of luck ran out, as our room was not yet ready at the time of check-in.  We left our bags in the luggage room and then headed out to explore the city.  Our destination was Belfry of Bruges / Belfort van Brugge, but on the way we stopped at Church of Our Lady and Sint-Salvatorskathedraal.  There was a decently long line at the Belfry, but we opted to wait in it as we figured that we could make it to the top and then back to the hotel by 2:30pm to check on our 7pm hot air balloon ride.  Rain began to fall while we were in line, but thankfully passed by the time we made it up the 366 steps and back down.  We got a €2 discount each on our entry fee (€10 vs €12), as a thrifty group of 8 Spaniards in front of us recruited us and another group of 5 behind us in order to get the group rate for parties of 15 or more.  We were also treated to an extended ringing of the bells while we were up at the top.


We made it back to the hotel right around 2:30pm, and Fran called to check on the hot air balloon ride (we needed to specify where to be picked up if it was still on).  Unfortunately, the ride was cancelled due to the weather.  We found out later that night that the back-up ride for early the next morning was also cancelled.  Fran took the news kinda hard, but I tried to show appreciation for the effort that she put into arranging the surprise.

We left the hotel again at 3:15pm, this time heading south.  We picked up some frites for me and a roll for Fran, and ate our snacks by Minnewater Lake.  We meandered northeast along the outer canal all the way to Gentpoort and then Kruispoort (and the adjacent Bonne Chieremolen windmill).  We then turned back in toward the town center.  After a wrong turn (directed by Fran's gut), we righted ourselves and stumbled upon an impressive whale-shaped art installation called Skyscraper (the Bruges Whale).

 
We made a brief stop at a drug store, and then headed for the Markt.  At this point it began to rain lightly again.  We made it to Markt and then continued on to Burg Square before heading back toward the hotel to find dinner.  We settled on an Italian restaurant where I had the spinach and ricotta tortellini while Fran had the penne with a vegetable sauce.  We then headed back to the hotel around 8:30pm and called it a day (besides making the unfortunate phone call at 10:15pm).

--

Pictures: https://photos.app.goo.gl/bf8ATN4xQRNDSGCu6

1 comment: