Bruges, Belgium

Bruges is so attractive because many of it’s medieval buildings  are still intact due to a 400 year commercial decline.  There was no wealth to modernize the town because trade came to a standstill after silting of the Zwin River and thus no navigation to the North Sea. 
DSC_1365  These horses clip-clop loudly and swiftly over the cobblestone streets carrying tourists.  All the drivers we saw were women and they really move out. 
The shop windows alone are enough reason to visit Bruges.  There are many, many chocolate, lace, and tapestry shops that must have artists designing their displays.

  Bruges is known to be a very expensive city.  Our hotel room, for being in such a prime location, was affordable at $128 a night.  But dinner last night was $45 at a small Italian place that had lower posted prices compared to other restaurants.  And all we had was one order of lasagna, one salad, and two bottles of water.  The one mile taxi ride from the train station to the hotel was $18.  It’s only 13 miles to Zeebrugge from here and we’ve already been quoted $75 dollars by two different taxi companies.  Ouch!  Our only other alternative is to take a bus from the square to the train station, then a train to Zeebrugge which has few  taxi’s, then a long, long walk with our luggage. After tomorrow, we should have much more control over expenses.  The cruise and the actual shipping of Tulip really was reasonable in our opinion.  It’s the interim periods without the RV that have been costly.  And now that we are finally at our destination we must start saving for the return home someday.   Note: I’m using the exchange rate we received to calculate dollar cost.