On Saturday March 10 at 6 AM I found myself on the steps of the Opéra Garnier with around 50 other people, awaiting a bus that would take us to Bruges and Brussels for the weekend. We blearily settled into our seats for the 4ish hour ride, arriving in beautiful Bruges around noon.
Impressions: Bruges was picturesque. Canals weave through the city, and people on bikes flood the streets. There are swans in the water! And beautiful old European churches. My friend Anna and I spent the afternoon eating, getting somewhat lost, and eating some more.
Anna and I took a long and tiring detour around the city- aka we got lost! It was worthwhile, though, because we had friendly encounters with a Belgian couple walking a golden retriever and three British teenage girls on bikes. But fear not, we meandered our way back into the center of the city- at a serious sugar and energy low and ready to consume our first Belgian waffles! I wasn’t expecting much, to be honest. I’m more of a pancake girl than a waffle fiend. BUT- the waffles we scarfed down in Bruges BLEW MY MIND. It was like eating a sugary donut in waffle form, but even better. Nothing like the dry, regular breakfast waffles that need maple syrup puddles in their square pockets in order to be edible. Real Belgian waffles are made with batter that contains yeast. Hm! I tried mine with some whipped cream. Perfection. After demolishing the waffles, Anna and I rejoined the group for the bus ride to Brussels.
Brussels: Slightly more modern than Bruges. An interesting twist of modern/old. After getting situated at the youth hostel, I went exploring with some friends in the program. The area around our hostel was very dead for a Saturday night! However, we walked to the main center and found plenty of restaurants, bars, and waffles stands.
On Sunday, we enjoyed walking the city by day. Cute little craft fair, lots of chocolate shops. I enjoyed the street art, which included cartoons!
Returned to Paris tired from walking, full from chocolate, and very content!