In Bruges

We spent two magical days in this charming village in Belgium, where we splurged to stay at a medieval house in celebration of our anniversary. The bed and breakfast is run by an artist who raises his 7 year old daughter in this fairytale. When we arrived, he popped his head out of the second story window and said "Hallo, welcome!" It's the only 15th century house in Bruges with an intact medieval interior. It's just as magical as it sounds, with a beautiful garden and overlooking the canal, which is connected to the other side by the Lover's Bridge. The owner gave us a print to commemorate our anniversary, even. We stayed on the third floor with vaulted ceilings and stained glass windows with a projection screen movie. It was paradise. We were even served a 3 course breakfast in our room. We felt extremely spoiled and pampered, and all this for less than the price of a basic room at the Woodlands Marriott.

In Bruges, we had no agenda, b/c we wanted to enjoy each other and a slow pace. We took the canal tour, where we saw the Lover's Park, a famous dog that sleeps in a window overhanging the water, beautiful swans, and lots of old churches. Bruges has 27 Catholic churches for its relatively small population. It's all stone pathways and very old and romantic. The evening of our anniversary, David (the b and b owner) recommended a fabulous "gastronomic" restaurant where we ate lobster salad, raw salmon, lamb, and dessert.

The next day, we toured the chocolate museum (complete with demo and tasting of how pralines-filled chocolates-are made). Then we walked through the "romantic heart" of Bruges, where we saw the nunnery and old fish market. Finally we toured the brewery of the only beer brewed in Bruges, and had a tasting of that. (It was a tasting, mind you, not a chugging, b/c "Belgians are no Germans." :)

Oh, and we consumed inordinate amounts of chocolate. There are streets lined with fresh chocolate shops, so every time we got hungry we at chocolate. It's the perfect way to live!

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