A Beautiful Day in Bruges

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My family were over last week to visit us in Brussels. We had a jam packed few days and on Saturday we decided to go to Bruges since the weather was a little nicer. Bruges is such a gorgeous and charming little city with so much to see. Bruges (or Brugge as it's known by the Dutch) has been almost entirely untouched since medieval times making it a very picturesque place. We started in one point and made our way slowly around the busy streets to see each thing. We visited the Basillica of the Holy Blood, the Belfry tower - the famous octagonal bell tower that rises to a height of 83m, the Markt which is the main square, Begijnhof, Gruuthuse Museum and several others before then taking a 35 minute boat trip down the Groenerei Canal which was a great way to see the rest of the city. If you want to take a trip up the Belfry/Belfort tower I recommend getting there early, between 9am and 10am as they stop allowing people in the late afternoon and it tends to be pretty busy. 366 steps take you to the roof to see some great views over the city. The tower features in the movie "In Bruges" with Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson.
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They say you can do Bruges in a day, but if you are going to visit (which I think you should) take at least 2 days to really enjoy it. There is so much to see and do! I was there for a day and although we got loads done I unfortunately didn't get to enjoy the restaurants, bars or the shopping street. It takes about 40mins by train to get to Bruges from Brussels, they run regularly and weekend return tickets are the best value. The lovely people over at SANDEMANs Free Walking Tour in Brussels also do day trips to Bruges if you're looking for a guided tour or I've heard the circle tour is also worth a try. There's hundreds of places to eat and drink while looking out onto the streets but keep in mind that Bruges is a little expensive.

Have you ever been to Bruges? 


COPYRIGHT 2014 ELAINE MALONE FOR MISSEBLOG ALL RIGHT RESERVED

Share Sunday 077 - My first month in Brussels

Packing, trying Ethiopian food, Flagey lake, World Cup in Grand Place

Ahh! I can't believe I've been in Brussels for over a month and haven't shared anything yet, I really wanted to document every moment of this new little adventure I'm on. I got to Brussels on July 1st and had a perfect first week with the boyfriend. He really showed off Brussels and left a good impression. The first few weeks I was here he was so busy in work with the World Cup, but the atmosphere in the city was amazing! Some of the things I've really enjoyed this month: trying new foods, having picnics by the lake in Flagey, celebrating our anniversary and watching the World Cup in Grand Place Square - they turn the square into a stadium during the Belgium games and everyone gathers to watch it together.

Streets after World Cup Final, beautiful cinema room, Galerie Royale Saint Hubert, getting spoiled

When we're both not busy working or cleaning, we've been exploring the streets. Of course I've also loved the little things like going to the cinema in the incredible carved rooms (second photo above - gorgeous!), hanging out in the boyfriends pub working on websites while he works, walking around this beautiful busy city, shopping and enjoying nights with friends. It's pretty different to our life at home but we've settled in well.

My "office", Galerie Royale Saint Hubert, Grand Place at the weekend, BBQ evening

This has been one of my favourite weeks! We went out with new friends on Monday night, then we were all off work on Tuesday and spontaneously decided to have a BBQ on our terrace. It turned out to be a fabulous night. Do you find that spontaneous nights are usually the best? With nine of us altogether and lots of food and wine. It was a perfect way to get to know each other a little better. Our neighbour even came to join us for some leftovers when he got home from work. The next day my family arrived and it's been a hectic week. I've cranked up some serious miles, burned holes through my shoes and filled up many memory cards! We packed so much into the few days they were here. I'll post about everything we did over the next few days, until then I hope you have a lovely Sunday!

Share Sunday 076 | Moving to Belgium?


The last few weeks have been a bit crazy to say the least. You can probably tell from the lack of posts both here and on XOMISSE that it's been a busy few weeks and it hasn't quite stopped yet. I thought for today's Share Sunday I'd do a quick recap of the last few weeks that I've been away as I have loads of news!

With the majority of assignments finished at the end of May, it was time to focus on my thesis and finishing my final year project to then present to my year and a panel of six lecturers. Slightly nerve wracking but by that stage we were just all delighted to be close to the end and close to getting some much needed sleep. The presentation went great and the panel really seemed to like my work. A week later we had the end of year showcase to show off our projects to family, friends, local businesses and those in the digital media industry. The two day show went so well. I'll be writing about the whole experience over on XOMISSE very soon if you'd like to read about it. I had a couple of people really interested in my project who gave me their contact details to discuss future projects and work which was so exciting!! The next few days after the show were spent following up with them, I cannot wait to see what happens!! I got my results the other day and am delighted that the hard work paid off and I now have an honours degree, can't believe it's finally all over. I was so worried about what's next after college but from talking to people at the show and receiving some of the emails I've gotten since then, I know that this is what I'm meant to be doing and it will fall into place as it's supposed to if I continue to work hard.


The other big change was the boyfriend moved to Belgium for work in February. He came home for 2 days for his birthday at the start of June, it was so nice to see him after 8+ weeks. Leaving the airport was so difficult as I thought I'd be going back with him but I still have some things to finish up here. Unfortunately the following day we got the news that his grandad, who has lived with him for most of his life and been a father figure for him and his brother, had suddenly passed away. I wasn't able to get him a flight home until Friday morning and I know those two days in Belgium were probably the longest two days for him. The weekend was a complete blur for everyone. It was such a shock and news we just weren't expecting! His grandad had drove me home from the airport the day before and told me he'd be over to visit us in Belgium in a few weeks. It's so hard to believe that he's no longer with us. I want to say a huge thank you to everyone who wrote to us over the passed few days, it really meant a lot to him.

The boyfriend flew back to Belgium on Monday and I will hopefully be able to head over in the next week or so. I had a list of things I needed to do before I left like finishing my driving lessons and finishing a website for a local school which was handed over to them on Friday. It was so interesting to work on something much different to what I'm used to. I've also been working on a redesign for XOMISSE to make it easier to find tutorials and creating Wordpress + Blogger Templates for the shop which will hopefully be published soon. So now it's time to book my flights, go shopping for bits I need to bring over, start washing clothes, sorting makeup and packing whatever I can. Wish me luck!