Why Spend 2 Days in Bruges, Belgium?
Bruges feels like stepping into a fairytale village. It is absolutely beautiful. 2 days in Bruges, Belgium is the perfect amount of time to spend to fully explore the medieval town.
Bruges is worth spending 2 days and is definitely a must-visit place in Europe. This medieval town dates back to the 1100s and was once a powerful port city.
Today, Bruges is not only steeped in history but has Belgium charm paired with a calm, scenic atmosphere. The town itself is large enough to spend a whole weekend, yet quaint enough to be a perfect break after spending time in a larger city such as Paris, France.
Get Lost in Wanderlust contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase using one of the links below, we may receive a very small compensation at no extra cost to you. We only recommend products and services we use and trust. Read our disclaimer for more information.
2 Days in Bruges Itinerary
Many people visit Bruges as a day trip from Brussels, Amsterdam, or Paris. However, if possible, I would highly recommend spending 2 days in Bruges. Not only is there plenty of things to explore in Bruges, but you also get a special atmosphere at night time once all the day trippers have left.
Day 1 of 2 Days in Bruges
Take a Canal Tour – A must-do during your 2 days in Bruges
Taking a canal tour is by far the most popular thing to do when visiting Bruges, and is a must-do activity during your 2 days in Bruges.
The canals date back to the 1100s and are a picturesque way to see this medieval city. During the canal tour, you’ll see interesting sites such as Bruges oldest hospital Sint-Janshospitaal and it’s secret canal entrance. You’ll also learn more about the history of the medieval village.
The canal tour lasts for about 30 minutes and you just buy your tickets in line. Since the canal tours close at about 5pm, I recommend doing the tour right when you arrive in Bruges.
Admire the Church of Our Lady
The Church of Our Lady is a highlight in Bruges and took over two centuries to build, before being completed in the 15th century. Inside the church, you can also see the Madonna and Child sculpture by Michelangelo.
Try the Delicious Belgium Frites For Lunch
You can’t visit Belgium without trying the food! Belgium Fries make for a delicious lunch while exploring Bruges. Belgium fries are famous because they are a thicker cut than American fries, and they also have a large variety of different sauces to try. To try some delicious Belgium Frites, I recommend stopping at the Frit Bar!
Take a Brewery Tour at De Halve Maan Brewery
If tasting some delicious Belgium beer is your thing, definitely check out De Halve Maan Brewery. They are the oldest brewery in Bruges, and also offer a great brewery tour. On the tour you learn more about Belgium beer, visit the rooftop for views over Bruges, and best of all get to try their beer at the end of the tour.
Tickets start at 15 Euros, and its best to book online ahead of time, or stop by the brewery when you get to town to book a time as these tours can sell out.
Take a break at Minnewater Park
Minnewater Park is a very scenic part of Bruges. Within the park, you’ll find the Lake of love and Lover’s bridge. Bringing your significant other? Local legend is that a kiss on the lover’s bridge is said to ensure that your love will last forever
Minnewater Park is also where you will see the beautiful Swans roaming and swimming around. The Swans are actually a symbol of Bruges, which makes sense for such a beautiful town.
Day 2 of 2 Days in Bruges
Start Your Morning with a Belgium Waffle
Belgium waffles are an absolute must try food item when in Bruges. Belgium waffles are absolutely delicious and typically come with a variety of toppings such as fresh fruit. It makes for a great take away breakfast to have while walking through the medieval streets of Bruges.
Belgium waffles certainly live up to the hype- it was by far was the best thing we ate in Belgium! For a great Belgium Waffle spot, I recommend Otto Waffle Atelier Katelijnestraat.
Explore Grote Markt
Grote Markt, (or Market Square in English) is the main square in the center of Bruges. The buildings are all a unique Flemish style. Here you will find several tourist attractions and small museums, and there are also plenty of shops and restaurants.
Markt Square is a convenient stop for some lunch, but to avoid higher prices you may want to try going down some of the side streets to eat at a less touristy restaurant.
Climb the Belfry Tower
In Markt Square, you will see the stunning Belfry of Bruges. The Belfry is a medieval bell tower and is a highlight of Bruges. You can climb to the top of the Belfry, but keep in mind there are about 366 steps to get to the top!
Visit Bruges’ Museums
While in Markt Square, make sure to check out the museums! There are several museums in Bruges, such as the Groeningemuseum (art museum), the Belgium Beer Experience, the Choco-story chocolate museum, and the Friet museum, to name a few.
Our favorite museum was Historium Brugge, which is an interactive historical museum with several different attractions. We chose to follow the Historium Story which takes you through several rooms and uses special effects and virtual reality to transport you back into Medieval Bruges.
Historium Brugge is a fun and interactive way to learn about Bruges, and is also a great activity if you are bringing kids along! As a bonus, there is a great balcony at the end of the museum that overlooks Markt square.
Drink Belgium Beer!
When in Bruges… drink the Belgium beer! We visited the Brewery Bourgogne des Flandres for a flight of beer on their outside patio. Belgium is famous for its beer (rightfully so) and also look at this view! It’s the perfect end to an amazing 2 days in Bruges.
Have More than 2 Days in Bruges?
2 Days in Bruges is the perfect amount of time to really enjoy the medieval town and visit the top sites. However, if time allows, an extra day or two is well worth it. Below are some additional options for a 3rd or 4th day in Bruges.
Take a Bike Ride to Damme and see the Windmills in Bruges
Have extra time after completing all of the above in Bruges? Why not rent a bicycle and take a leisurely ride to Damme.
Damme is a neighboring village connected to Bruges by the Maerlant Bicycle Trail. This will take you along a canal where you can enjoy lovely scenery to the picturesque village of Damme.
The ride is about 7km and will take you around 30 minutes each way on bicycle. On the way to Damme, you’ll see the beautiful windmills of Bruges.
Take a day trip to Ghent
Another option is to take a day trip to Ghent, which is around a 20 minute train ride from Bruges, with several trains each day. Ghent is a university town and the highlight is the Gravesteen Castle. A great way to see this town on limited time would be to take a walking tour of Ghent.
Where to stay when you visit Bruges
We stayed at Hotel Academie Bruges and I would highly recommend it. This boutique hotel was beautifully decorated and was within walking distance of all the major attractions, as well as only a 10-minute walk from the train station. The staff was fabulous and even decorated our room since this was an anniversary trip for us. I plan to stay there again next time we are in Bruges. Other highly rated hotels in Bruges include Boutique Hotel De Castillion, Hotel Duke’s Palace, and the Pand Hotel.
How to get to Bruges
Bruges is easily accessed via local train from Brussels, Antwerp, or Ghent. You can also take a high-speed train from cities like Paris or Amsterdam to Brussels, and then hop on a local train to Bruges. A more budget-friendly option is to take a bus. Flixbus is a tourist bus that connects to Bruges and several other large cities such as Brussels or Amsterdam.
How to plan your visit to Bruges
One of the best parts about Bruges is that you don’t need to over-plan. Unlike some of the bigger cities where you might plan tour after tour, Bruges is much more relaxed. You can walk around and explore the city as you see fit, which makes for a very enjoyable time. The one thing I would possibly book in advance is the brewery tour at De Halve Maan, but other than that? ~Just enjoy.