A Perfect Day in Brugge

Having only been in Brugge for a total of about 36 hours, I will not claim to know all the top spots in the city or give you my all inclusive guide.  Only someone who lives there can do that!  I can, however, share with you what I did during my full day in Brugge.  I got to experience a lot of the city, and thought it was a pretty good itinerary, so here goes.
Actually, full disclosure: I can't even take credit for my particular itinerary!  Rick Steves gets the credit.  His guide to Belgium was in the AirBnb I stayed in, which included a self-guided walking tour.  I followed it, more or less, and do think it made for the perfect day!

I started my day early with breakfast at a little cafe called Le Pain Quotidien.  I knew it was a chain, but I didn't realize they are all over the world...ahem, Birmingham, AL, apparently.  Anyways, I had never been to one, it was conveniently located, not crazy expensive, and most importantly, it was one that opened as early as I woke up!
I finished breakfast just in time to get back to Burg Square in time for the Bell Tower to open.  As Rick suggested, I paid my 10 Euros to climb to the top.  Everything I had heard said this was a must-do.  I would suggest you skip it unless you are just dying to climb 366 winding stairs.  Yes, there were decent views, but they were by no means breathtaking.   If you are going to go, go early.  The stair case is very small, as is the area at the top, so only a few people are allowed up at a time.  Paying guests waiting at the base are only allowed to start climbing as individuals descend.  
I enjoyed seeing where different cities were with respect to the tower.
Next on Rick's itinerary was City Hall and the Basilica of the Holy Blood.  I didn't go in this trip since I figured it was something Bryn and I could do together when we go!
If you walk through the tunnel to the left of city hall, you will come out by one of the beautiful canals, near the Fish Market.  From here, I bought a ticket to go on a tour of the canals by boat.  From what I gathered, all of the tours cost the same and include the same general commentary, so one company isn't necessarily better than another.  It's a very pleasant way to get off of your feet for 30 minutes and see the city from a different perspective.  The commentary was entertaining, too.
Next, take a stroll along the canals to get your postcard shots of Brugge.  
Rick's tour takes you to another church, The Church of our Lady (you can't miss its super-tall tower) and through some of Brugge's art and history museums.  Again, I skipped going into these this trip, and continued on to Minnewater park.  It is a very picturesque green space with a lake called the Lover's Lake, and the whole area is home to loads of swans!  
I had completed most of Rick's suggested walk (minus church and museum tours) by just after lunchtime.  I bet if you go inside all of the spots and take a slow lunch at a cafe in-between, it will easily take you the better part of a day.

For lunch, I had a super-traditional, gourmet lunch of a hot dog and Belgian fries with mayonnaise from a food cart!
While my morning was fairly architectural, my afternoon was a bit more cultural.  But you'll have to check back later to hear about that!

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