Bruges is an excellent place to photograph. Located in the northwestern corner of Flemish Belgium, this small city is one of Europe’s most beautiful medieval cities. Here you will find old-fashioned white almshouses along cobbled streets, giving way to canals lined with weeping willows. While the city’s weather may leave something to be desired, Bruges is still a fantastic place to practice taking pictures.
Frozen in Time
Every alleyway, every narrow street, ever canal in Bruges would make a perfect picture. The unique angles of medieval buildings, the perpetually grey sky and leftover bits of bygone eras will surely make you feel inspired.
There are also many things to see in Bruges. For example, you can visit the Grote Markt, which is a main square surrounded by brightly painted buildings designed in the Flemish style. You can also pay a visit to the begijnhof, or convent, which sports gardens filled with daffodils and tulips in the spring. Or, visit one of the many little shops that specialise in handmade lace, which the city was known for during the 18th century, but is still produced today.
Bruges also offers plenty of options for fine dining. Flemish food has a reputation for being simple, fresh, and prepared with care, like a less flamboyant version of French cuisine. Belgian chocolates are particularly famous, and you can find many small chocolatiers around the city. At the same time, Belgium is known for its many varieties of beer, and Bruges is no exception. Some great places to try local brews include De Halve Maan, Staminee de Garre and De Kelk, which are all great places to sit and recharge after a long day of photographing the canals.
Beauty in the Rain
When photographing the city, make the weather work for you. Since Bruges receives an unbelievable amount of rain, you will have to be comfortable photographing in wet, dreary weather. Use an aperture that’s wide open to allow for enough light to keep your pictures from looking gloomy. Though the sky may be grey, look for ways to compose your pictures so that the sky becomes a grey backdrop that allows the architecture to pop. That way, you can show that this city can even look beautiful on the dreariest of days.
Everywhere you turn in Bruges you could take a photo worthy of a postcard. Arguably Europe’s finest example of a preserved medieval city, the treasures you can find here are akin to those witnessed in a fairytale. The fact the whole city is a UNESCO World Heritage site is enough to consider a trip to the magic city.
If everywhere is ready for a snap can there be a number one photo opportunity? Well, of course, and that is found at the summit of 336 steps you claim when visiting the Market Halls and Belfry. It might be one hell of a climb but from the top you will be able to snap the Belguim capital at its finest.
Like in many European cities, accommodation and travel in Bruges can be expensive for the budget traveller. However, there are plenty of cheap holiday offers available online, particularly if you book in advance. Also, if you’re taking the train and are under 26, you may qualify for a reduced rate.
This beautifully preserved city is waiting for you, Grab your camera and book a trip now. Who knows? You may even get to see Bruges on a rare sunny day.
Author bio: Nick Bingals is a travel blogger who discusses worldwide adventures and whets the appetite for fellow travellers to visit places and countries. He helps with all aspects of travel whether that be taking the right camera or going to the perfect hotspots.
Image credit: CN Traveller