Amsterdam and Brugge

Jan 7th, 2009, 11:36 AM
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Well it is in Vlaanderen so it is Brugge.
spaarne is offline  
Jan 7th, 2009, 12:15 PM
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And we know that all English speakers say that when they go to Belgie.
kerouac is online now  
Jan 7th, 2009, 07:16 PM
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Thanks to everyone who offered suggestions and recommendations.

I'm still debating between the Continent or heading north into Scotland (Edinburgh) instead.
If you had to choose between Edinburgh, Brugge, or Bruges, which would you choose (based upon my interests posted at the beginning of this thread)?
Kaneohe is offline  
Jan 7th, 2009, 07:25 PM
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I have been to both, though it's been a long time since I was in Edinburgh. IMO, I think Edinburgh will be more lively, esp in the evenings, with more things to do for a single guy. Bruges is lovely and gets very crowded during the day due to daytrippers/tour groups, but at night it is very quaint. There are lots and lots of bars in Bruges, but otherwise, not much else going on at night.

Weather-wise, Bruges will be nicer than Edinburgh.

As for museums, both cities have great ones. Do you mean art museums or something else? If it is art museums, do you have a particular period that you like. The reason i ask is Bruges' museums have an excellent collection of Flemish Primitives paintings (van Eyck, Memling etc).

If you still have a hard time deciding, perhaps you should rent the movie In Bruges, which will sway you towards Bruges no doubt.
yk is online now  
Jan 7th, 2009, 07:51 PM
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I'm not much of a fan of Brugge, which is beautifully preserved but otherwise feels devoid of authentic life beyond the tourist kitsch. I highly recommend that you investigate the possibility of visiting Antwerpen instead given the way you've described your interests. You can visit Brugge from there -- although again, I'd sooner Gent. Food in Belgium (everywhere, including Brugge) is fantastic. I'm not a fan of Brussels.

But Edinburgh is also a fine destination, with Glasgow nearby as well. What might tip it for you is the availability of English-language theater.

Bed and breakfasts in the Netherlands and Belgium are reliably clean, comfortable and affordable. I had a very nice stay in Edinburgh at Six Mary's Place, a b&b.
zeppole is offline  
Jan 7th, 2009, 07:57 PM
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I wanted to add that since you put museums at the head of your list of interests, Amsterdam has several of the world's finest.
zeppole is offline  
Jan 8th, 2009, 12:46 AM
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Can I just repeat my earlier posting about the Van Gogh museum - from February 13 to June 7 there is a special exhibition on, and entry to the museum is only by timed ticket, which must be bought in advance - you can do so once you are there or buy online to be sure of getting one. Once you are in the museum you can stay as long as you want.
hetismij is offline  
Jan 8th, 2009, 04:56 AM
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We found that if you got away from the immediate center of Brugge/Bruges/Bruegge there are many areas that are not just "touristy." Though the center of Bruegge/Bruges/Brugge is not as "touristy" as some other destinations in Europe.
RufusTFirefly is offline  
Jan 8th, 2009, 05:08 AM
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I at least half-agree with Rufus, and would point out to the original Kaneohe that the area of the brewery is one of those areas outside the immediate center that is not as touristy. (And you might like to see Michaelangelo's Madonna, which is also at least a step outside the tourist thronged center).

But thus far in my travels, central Brugge pretty much took the wedding cake being a stage set for tourists, with people in costumes, horse rides, buskers, piped-in music, 'fortune tellers' etc. And I was there off-season!
zeppole is offline  
Jan 8th, 2009, 05:14 AM
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Then there's Rothenburg o.d. Tauber!
RufusTFirefly is offline  
Jan 8th, 2009, 11:44 AM
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The problem is that people want to be in the touristy part of Bruges, not in some industrial zone.
kerouac is online now  
Jan 8th, 2009, 11:56 AM
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I don't recall seeing any part of Brugge that I would characterize in any way as an "industrial zone." But the area near the river, with windmills, was absolutely devoid of tourists, as were the beautiful residential streets around the church of St Ann, where the Belgian block pavement has a gorgeous patina and the very modest houses are hung with Belgian lace that only partially obscures the very homey classic interiors so easily seen from the street. (This part of Brugge is not far from the old brewery, which is a very small brewery). Also, near the train station a good 15 minute walk from the touristy center is the gracious old convent.

One really doesn't have to walk far to get out the tourist-zoo area with the costumed performers and tour groups, etc. And if you do that, you'll still find yourself walking atmospheric streets, often with canals and swans. Just not a lot of tourist tat being hawked at you.
zeppole is offline  
Jan 8th, 2009, 11:58 AM
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One other thing Kaneohe might want to know as a solo traveler is that Brugge is a very popular honeymoon and wedding anniversary destination.
zeppole is offline  

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