Vacation Recap: Belgium
Hi friends, happy Friday! Recapping this helps remind me of how lucky I am that we were able to go and how I’ll never forget the whole experience. Enjoy and I’m not going to apologize for how many waffle mentions and photos you’ll see! 😉 PS I couldn’t upload every single photo to truly capture everything but there are two story highlights on Instagram for more if you want to see them!
When we landed and got past customs and trains we felt discombobulated but quickly found our Air BnB which was absolutely perfect for what we wanted. We headed to lunch at Brew Dog which had some amazing beers and pretty good food. We got a lot of free food and alcohol (free!) on the plane so I’m not sure my stomach was quite ready to experience everything. Afterwards we enjoyed tooling around a nearby park and stayed awake as long as could until we crashed and slept till 7:00 AM the next day.
I had espresso every day – seems to be the trend over there and I miss it! We walked to a local grocery market and probably annoyed locals while we read and slowly meandered through the aisles. Good thing I’m good at coming up with quick and easy meals! We were pretty hungry after that (don’t recommend going grocery shopping hungry!) and headed to Peck 47 where we had AH-MAZING breakfast food and drink. I mean, don’t those photos just make you drool? Afterwards we walked to Grand Place which is a magnificent as it sounds and found a pub for some beer and waffles. We visited Delirium Tap House for some tasters, got fries at Fritland (covered in truffle sauce ERMERGERD), saw the tiny Manneken Pis all the tourists sites say to go to and finished the day with donuts. We went back to CoCo Donuts more than once but my first one had speculoos which is common in Belgium, it’s like a crumbly shortbread biscuit <3 SO good.
Steve found a couple of museums to go to so we coined this the museum and waffle day! We started at Moof Museum where we saw a lot of comic book history. We went to Maison Dandoy and had by far the BEST liege waffles there. Liege waffles are different than Belgium waffles, they’re made from a dough, they’re thicker, and have sugar pearls inside…yeah I already ordered the sugar pearls and I’ll be making some SOON! We walked to the Museum of Natural Sciences next and saw a nice dinosaur exhibit. It also was free since it was the first Wednesday of the month, yea savings! Afterwards we went to Park du Cinquantenaire which was beautiful. This was a particularly sunny day and after a LOT of steps we finished the night at Scott’s Bar for beer flights, pizza, and an avocado daiquiri. We might have had a couple extra beers and hit up a late night waffle place after 😉
We headed to a new part of Brussels, saw some beautiful churches and buildings and had breakfast at Chicago Café. I promise it had Belgium food and it wasn’t American based off the name 😉 Since we were still a little hungry (and I learned that not all Matcha lattes are made the same) we went for coffee and croissants at a café called Charli. We found Zinneke Pis next, which is the dog version of Manneken Pis and waited for Brussels Beer Project to open. They had some more American styled beers (and Belgium ones too) and we enjoyed a few while watching the brewers work. We had charcuterie and…can you believe this…more beer at Moeder Lambic! This became a favorite location of ours. Amazing beers from all over Europe and great people too.
We packed our day-bag and headed to the Antomium which is the giant metal ball/jack-like sculpture in the photos. You get to take elevators, stairs and escalators up into the various sections which was fun. All rides of course end in the gift shop where I’m a sucker for post cards to take home and frame later on 😊 We enjoyed our packed lunch and though I was tempted by a waffle food truck we passed and enjoyed a leisurely walk through a giant park. Afterwards, we went to the Brussels Design Museum and saw and read about the history of plastic. When we headed back we stumbled upon Ballekes, aka meatball Heaven which seriously was heaven. You picked your type of meat ball, sauce, and sauce for your fries. To.Die.For. If you’re ever in Brussels, just go there.
Oh and later I had more waffles 😊
We traveled again only this time it was an hour and fifteen minute train ride to Brugge! This was the must-go-to town our friends told us to visit and we’re so glad we did. We started with breakfast at That’s Toast which was also drool worthy. I should note that at every restaurant we went to Steve and I seemed to have perfect timing. We never had to wait long for a table, we loved our service, and there was never a rush for anything (which is the general culture over there too). We walked around the Markt center and listened to the church bells chime. Later we got beer flights by a canal at Bourgogne des Flandres and walked toward the outskirts of town to see giant old windmills. We got…can you believe it…more waffles and more beer at Brouwerij de Halve Maan (Half Moon Brewery). This place was great and we sat in giant, plushy chairs and sipped some authentic Belgium beer. We capped the night after dinner with a cocktail at the Gin and Whisky Lounge. A quiet but amazing place for a well made drink!
I’m pretty sure we slept in this day because Brugge was fun but longer and fuller than our other days. We had a leisurely breakfast at Le Pain Quotidien, crowded but it was like eating in a beautiful green house. It’s a good thing neither of us choose not to eat bread because we got what felt like three loaves when we got there. We took the day to walk without purpose and just take in the culture. We did eat another donut from CoCo Donuts and had some sour beers at A La Mort Subite. Also, we called it an early night and relaxed at home cooking up dinner and enjoying time without social media.
We decided to get a smaller breakfast because this had been our main meal on most days and hit up Jat’ Cafe where we got some amazing bagels! Mine had almost too much brie on it (which is saying something if you know me) but I still really enjoyed it. We walked to Cantillon Brewery which if you don’t know…is amazing. Amazing sour beers, fun experience, sought after viciously in the US and we got to sit and drink there all day. We met some Americans from Georgia (hello, friends if you’re reading!) and it felt a bit more like our other experiences at breweries where we’ll just start chatting and enjoying new company. Jessi desperately wanted salad after this so we grabbed some on our walk back and washed it down with a waffle of course. Seriously. Waffles every day! This was our second to last day so we decided to go to Floris Bar for Absinthe. No, we did not hallucinate! The alley where this was located is in the same alley as Delirium (which has three or four different areas to drink) so it was a really fun way to cap our evening!
Day Nine aka Favorite Day
We deemed this day, favorite day! We went back to our favorite locations and took our time at each of them. In fact, this was the general theme of the trip. Slow…down. Take it in, don’t rush anything and enjoy every single moment. We did and I cannot wait to keep living my life in slow motion savoring every single day to its fullest.
Hope you enjoyed this recap! Questions? Comments? Concerned about my waffle intake? Don’t worry my withdrawals have stopped and I’m back to perfecting a liege waffle recipe for you all soon.