Within the confines of the old city, there is a multitude of interests and leisurely activities to pursue. This ranges from getting acquainted by hopping on the excellent boat tours, to really getting `on top of things` by climbing the 366 steps of the Belfry, for a breathtaking view that can reach all the way to the North Sea!
However, not only the city centre is filled with things to enjoy. When venturing slightly beyond, the whole of Flanders lies at your feet, starting with the beautiful rural area around Bruges.
Brewery `De Halve Maan`
Enjoy a freshly brewed beer!
This brewery opened its doors in 1564 which makes it one of Western Europe`s oldest breweries still active today.
It has been owned by the Maes family since the very beginning. Their guided tours allow visitors to visit the modern brewery as well as the resident museum. If you are a real beer fanatic, the XL-tours will be just up your alley. More information about this family brewery you can find on their website.
Bruges` Flemisch Primitives
The Groeninge Museum also goes by the name of `The city museum of Fine Arts`. The collection was started in the beginning of the 18th century.
The name `Groeninge` refers to the fields near the city of Kortrijk, where in 1302 the army of the Flemish defeated the army of the French king. The art collection focuses primarily on works by painters who lived and worked in Bruges. Find out more here.
The Chocolate Museum
Bruges` very own chocolate museum, with live chocolate-making sessions and chock-a-block with the history of the cocoa bean. Who can resist?
A visit to Belgium just wouldn`t be complete without finding out all there is to know about the famous Belgian `pralines` and the history of chocolate as we know it today. Find more details here.
The lace museum overlooked by the Jerusalem Church was already proud to house some real `lace` pearls. The centre is situated in renovated almshouses. A place where old and poor lace workers used to live about 50 years ago. Here you can find a permanent exhibition showing several lace varieties. This exhibition is regularly extended with some temporary exhibitions.
In the afternoon you can visit the open lace atelier, where the finesse of the bobbin lace is demonstrated. If you have a question, you can ask during the demonstration. You might learn to appreciate the work that goes into each piece of lace. By seeing the professionals at work you will learn the value of all the pieces of lace throughout museum. You can even take part yourselves by digitally making lace. Find more details here.
A time machine to the Golden Age of Bruges!
This interactive museum guides you through ten rooms where you travel back to Bruges in the Middle Ages.
A wonderful love story connects the different rooms. Each of these rooms represent an aspect of daily life during this period. The tour will take about an hour and at the end you can visit the panorama terrace with the best view on the Belfry. The museum will charm children and adults alike. For tickets and opening hours you can visit their website.
Discover the secrets of the mysterious world of diamonds during the daily diamond polishing shows.
The permanent exhibition of the museum tells you the story of the Bruges and Flemish diamond. The Museum organises temporary exhibitions on subjects related to diamonds. You will find more information on their website.
Boudewijn Sea Park
A fun, family day out
Bruges has its very own aquatic theme park for you to visit, complete with a dolphinarium and rides.
Offering daily dolphin, seal and bird shows, Boudewijn Seapark opens yearly from April through September. You can get your photo taken with a dolphin and to make sure you won`t go hungry there is a seaside themed restaurant. Read much more on the park`s website here.
Public Observatory and planetarium Cozmix Beisbroek
Located on the outskirts of Bruges, a 20 minutes drive from the city centre, Beisbroek offers a fun and informative day out for visitors of all ages!
An interactive exposition takes you on a capturing journey of discovery through our solar system and beyond. The modern Zeiss planetarium has 45 seats from where visitors get a spectacular view of the night sky, no matter what time of day. Their website can be found here.