Discover the fresh romantic spot to celebrate this Valentine’s Day
On February 14, lovers from all over the world rise to the occasion to make this day exceptional for their special someone. What might be a better Valentine’s Day gift than a romantic escape far from the daily routine? Even though the general atmosphere of love is in the air on this day, some places are still more romantic then others. Discover one of the most romantic cities that is not as flooded with tourists as Paris or Rome and will definitely capture the heart of you beloved for this Valentine’s Day.
If you associate canals only with Venice and therefore find Venice the most romantic city ever you’ve probably never heard about Bruges, Belgian romantic capital. Once you see this postcard-perfect medieval city with pairs of swans drifting around on picturesque canals, and a body of water literally called the ‘Lake of Love’, you will mark it as a must destination for the most romantic trip or even a proposal or a honeymoon.
As you walk around Bruges' cobbled streets, you'll quickly notice that there's a chocolate shop on almost every street corner, all selling a selection of the most amazing Belgium chocolates.
Those are the most romantic spots of the most romantic city.
Minnewaterpark & Minnewater Bridge
In the south part of Bruges, you will find the adjacent Minnewaterpark, surrounded by blooming plants you’ll find a small rectangular lake called 'Minnewater' or Lake of Love with white swans. The tragic romance of Minna and her warrior love Stromberg has evolved into local legend promising you eternal love if you walk over the lake bridge with your partner. Forced by her father to marry another man while her warrior love was off to battle, young Mina ran off into the woods and eventually died of exhaustion. Stromberg honored her by building a dam to hold back the stream, burying her and then letting the water flow over her grave. This widespread folkloric belief turns Lake of Love into a must spot for lovers. Enjoy the scenery from the lake bridge, one of the benches along the lake or stroll through the calm Minnewaterpark.
At any time of the day, in all seasons, the Quay of the Rosary (Rozenhoedkaai) has the enthralling ability to always make a stunning impression. No wonder if Rozenhoedkaa turns out to be one of the most photographed sites throughout the city. It is very close to Tanners square and the Fish Market, not even two minutes away. In addition, the main square Grote Markt is five minutes away, so you it won’t take you long to get to the ideal location to pause for a moment and together with your loved and take your best postcard photo.
No doubt the beautiful courtyard of the Gruuthuse palace, bordering on the canals, has a high wow-factor. The impressive 15th century city palace amazes with its medieval opulence and its splendor illuminates the entire courtyard. In the shadow of the Church of Our Lady you’ll find yourself enveloped by riches and wealth from times past. Wander around, discover surprising corners of the courtyard or give your feet a break by enjoying the scenery from one of the benches.
This exceptionally narrow street has a very rich history of rendez-vous, though not of the overt kind. The Stoofstraat, meaning a ‘Stove Street’, used to be home to a notorious bathhouse for the Belgian elite. Wealthy men not only came here to have a haircut and clean themselves up, but to enjoy a romp with women of easy virtue as well. In a way it was Bruges’ very own red light district until the Church shut down the fun. Due to obvious reasons these kind of places were located in discreet, narrow alleys such as this one. Today, when the historic background is almost forgotten, this narrow medieval looking street looks extremely romantic. In some places the walls are so close to each other you can spread out your arms and touch both sides.
A bit tired of long walks or just dreaming of getting warm or sharing a romantic dinner, you won’t be short of cozy places.
The Gulliver Tree & Vero Caffè
On snowy days when walks can't last forever, a long brunch at The Gulliver Tree is there to banish the gloom. Feel yourself at home in their living room-style lounge and sip your Glunwein in front of the fireplace. Another charming coffee house to hide out in is the snug Vero Caffè, run by mother-daughter team Veronique and Chloë, queens of the homemade pastry.
‘t Zwart Huis
For a romantic outing on the town in Bruges you should absolutely check if there’s anything playing at ‘t Zwart Huis. Nothing more romantic than a little blues to tug at the heartstrings, and a live gig at this atmospheric jazz de, a perfect musical accompaniment for your love dance. Another great option for smooth concerts is cellar bar Comptoir des Arts.