Swans swim its canals; medieval buildings shadow its cobblestones; willow trees weep over its lake; rich chocolates peer from behind its windows; pints of Belgian blondes sit on its café tables; and carillon chimes fill its air with music: This is Bruges. This idyllic city in northern Belgium is more touristy and yet more quaint than the capital city of Brussels. So you visit Bruges for a taste of medieval Europe in the 21st century, for a friendly small-town feel with world-class charms (the Historic Centre of Brugge to name one) and, of course, for the beer, fries and chocolate, all national treasures. Some also visit because they're fans of Colin Farrell. The violent and yet still somehow comedic 2008 film, In Bruges, was shot here. And fans of Farrell (Brendan Gleeson and Ralph Fiennes too) can trace the actors' steps through this small city. Whatever your reason for coming to Bruges, we're pretty sure you'll be charmed.
The best time to visit Bruges is the summer, when the weather is mild and the trees are green. Still, the weather year-round is characterized as chilly and damp -- summer temps only reach the 70s. Spring and fall act as shoulder seasons with fewer tourists and cooler temperatures. In the winter, temperatures drop to near freezing levels, which in turn keeps many visitors away.See details for When to Visit Bruges
The best way to get around Bruges is on foot. The city is small -- in fact, you can walk from one end to the other in 30 minutes. Biking is the second best way to get around. There's also a small bus system, but it's most useful in getting from the train station to the city center rather than for exploring the city. Cars are really not recommended since Bruges' streets are narrow and webbed with canals. You can also get taxis, but you'll have to reserve them in advance rather than hail them from the street. The closest major airport is Brussels International (BRU), so most visitors take the train into Bruges. The train station is located just southeast of the city center, about a 12-minute walk from Minnewater Lake.See details for Getting Around
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