Our time in Europe has taken us to lots of big cities. I love big cities, but I also wanted to explore the small towns of Europe and really get a feel for what it was like to live in a smaller town. A while ago I mentioned a bit about skipping Brussels if you are worried about being in large cities in Europe due to current state department travel warnings, and instead, heading to the smaller towns and villages. You definitely want to put Bruges, Belgium on your list. Bruges with kids is like being in a real life fairy tale village. I felt like I had stepped onto the set of Beauty and the Beast. Affiliate links are included in this post.
Where to Eat in Bruges with Kids
Quaint little restaurants abound in this charming town, along with popular (and familiar spots) like McDonalds.
Owned and operated by a mother and her son, this charming little spot will make you feel like you are dining at home with friends.
Oude Burg 26, Bruges 8000, Belgium
Some of the best Italian food I had while in Europe…and I spent almost a month in Italy!
Sint-Jakobsstraat 45, Bruges 8000, Belgium
Our favorite authentic Belgian Waffles. Don’t eat here, just get waffles. Order them through the window on the street for about 1 euro. You want them plain, trust me.
Wollestraat 20, Bruges, Belgium
Where to Stay in Bruges
We started our search looking for family friendly hotels in Bruges and were led through some research to a charming little spot called the Hotel Navarra Bruges. It was just about a block from the Historic City Center down a charming little street of it’s own. The Hotel Navarra Bruges had a wonderful family room, and a pool in the basement of the hotel which the kids loved! It is very customary for these hotels in Europe to include a full breakfast and the Hotel Navarra Bruges was no exception. I would highly recommend it. Check out the hotel and the reviews to see what you think and find out if it would be a good fit for your family, but I highly recommend it!
What is there to do in Bruges with Kids
Wandering the charming streets eating and shopping is our top activity in Bruges. Bruges has a very modern shopping street full of stores like Zara, Fred and Ginger, and interior design shops like Munt. I could spend hours here. There are SO many historic buildings, churches and museums to see, as Bruges has most of its medieval architecture intact and most of it’s buildings are noteable. Many are free, some require tickets, but few should need advance reservations. Search sites like Yelp and TripAdvisor to find spots that might interest you and pick a few to see.
Historic City Center
Beautiful buildings and horse drawn carriages abound in this historic city center. The historic centre of Bruges has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2000. You can’t miss it! Enjoy some time just wandering and sitting here watching the world go by.
Canal Boat Tours
Known as the “Venice of the north” explore the stunning canals of the city and learn about it’s history on a delightful hour long boat tour.
This tour is really good value €8 per adult and it takes about 30 minutes to complete. The tour guide/boat driver speaks lots of languages and each has their own way of passing on their historic knowledge of Bruges. The boat ride is a great activity to do in Bruges with kids…even if they aren’t old enough to enjoy the history, they like the ride and it’s not too long so it holds their interest.
Pick up a horse and carriage ride for about 50 euro for 35 minutes. Of course this is at the top of the list of things to do in Bruges with kids! It’s expensive, but considering you can fit the whole family it isn’t that bad. Plus, the sound of the carriage on the cobblestone streets is like something out of a movie. Pick any of the carriages up at the Historic City Center.
Go Chocolate Shopping
There are literally chocolate shops across the street from chocolate shops, next to other chocolate shops in Bruges. You can’t escape it so you might as well give in. Stop in at a few and purchase a few pieces from each to find your favorites.
French fries (or frites), Wafles and Chocolate are the main food groups while in Bruges, so eating in Bruges with kids should be no problem since those are there three favorites! 😉
Chocolate shops abound in Bruges, so be sure to save room to taste something from several different shops!
This quaint little spot was one of our favorite restaurants in Bruges.
Does it get any more picturesque than this? I think not!
The old city center is a beautiful place to sit and watch the world go by.
A fun activity we did while in Bruges with the kids is to rent some bikes. We wandered the cobblestone streets and visited parks. It was a great activity in Bruges with kids!
WHAT TO PACK FOR A TRIP TO BRUGES
The weather in Bruges is chilly. The warmest month is August, and even then, temperatures rarely get out of the 60’s. Days are sunny, so be sure to pack sunscreen, sunglasses and hat, but layer, layer, layer. Long sleeve shirts, a sweater and a coat with comfortable denim and some cute flats will have you ready for anything that comes your way. An umbrella is a good idea to keep in your bag in case of an afternoon shower.
Ideas for what to pack (click on any image for more information about the product)
There is no place on earth like Bruges. I’m sure that traveling there as a couple would be wonderful, but Bruges with kids is also magical. I hope that you are feeling excited for your adventure.
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