Bruges, Belgium

After an *extremely* difficult nearly three full weeks of teaching 12hrs/week, obviously it was time for a vacation!

Traveling is always my big highlight of my vacations from TAPIF. I wanted to kickstart it a bit early this time around with a quick girls’ weekend trip.

I got Brooke and Amanda on board by giving them a googledoc full of travel options… The winning destination was Bruges, Belgium!


We left Paris Saturday afternoon and took a quick 4.5-hour FlixBus to Bruges. We were battling everything from severe hangovers to laryngitis, but somehow everyone made it!

By the time we arrived in Bruges, it was already getting a bit dark. We stopped for dinner, which included our first servings of fries and beer for the weekend, and then found our hostel.

We stayed at St. Christopher’s, a popular European hostel chain. I had already stayed at their Barcelona location in 2021, but this one was a bit different. A big highlight was their spooky-themed bar, complete with the DJ playing music out of a coffin. 

My friends and I took full advantage of this bar as we sipped on (more) beers and played some cards to end the night.


Sunday was a packed day of sightseeing, shopping, and, of course, eating!

To start the day, we grabbed coffees and did some shopping. Amanda had already been to Bruges about a year before, and she knew she needed to return home with two important things: 1) a sweater from a very specific homemade clothing store and 2) milk chocolate horse heads from a chocolate store next door. Thankfully, we found both of these things, so she was able to leave happy.

We did as we always have to do on girls’ trips and got brunch together. It was mediocre at best, but the liège waffles we enjoyed after were absolutely incredible!

Then, we found our walking tour group. We quickly met a girl named Maddie, an American solo backpacking around Europe, who we bonded with for obvious reasons. 

During the walking tour, we saw the Church of our Lady, the Bruges Markt, the Bruges Vrije, the Burg Square, and more. We also learned more about Bruges’s culture and history, as well as how to find the best chocolate shops in the city.

After the tour? Time for more shopping, of course! I dragged Brooke, Amanda, and even Maddie into several chocolate stores in hopes of finding the speculoos chocolate truffles I had tried during my trips to Brussels last year. I not only found them, but I also convinced everyone else to buy a box. Everyone agreed it was worth it.

We did a bit more wandering and exploring until it was time for dinner. Amanda and I had Flemish beef stew, while Brooke and Maddie opted for mussels. All served with an order of fries, of course! Delicious.

Then, we all headed back to the hostel for more beers and cards.


Early Monday morning, Brooke, Amanda and I all headed back to the bus station to get ready to for our trip back to Paris. We each grabbed a random assortment of foods for breakfast/lunch – I ended up with a large caramel iced coffee, a quarter of a stale baguette, a bowl of oranges, and a chocolate donut. Interesting, but it did the job.

We finally made it back to the Bercy bus station, aka the most beautiful part of Paris, about four hours later. 

Tired but well-fed and with plenty of chocolates and other souvenirs in hand, we all returned to our individual apartments, where we could enjoy some rest and alone time to make up for the travel craziness and over-socialization.

Bruges seemed to me like a perfect mix between Amsterdam and Brussels. It is consistently named one of the most charming cities in Europe, and now I can see why!

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