Give in to the romance of city breaks to Bruges, a town washed by canals and scattered with Gothic spires...
Bruges is the capital of the Flemish province of West Flanders, in the north-western corner of Belgium. Sharply pitched brick townhouses and arched bridges line the slow-moving canals of Bruges. The Belgian city's medieval charms centre on the Markt, a square ablaze with brilliantly coloured banners. You can see Bruges's centuries-old streets and canals fan outwards from atop the 13th-century Bell Tower.
From the Belfry it's easy to understand the allure of Bruges. It's a compact city, so getting around on foot (or in a carriage) is easy. From the heights of the Belfry look out for glassy lakes, pockets of green and a jigsaw puzzle of canals and streets - where time-worn buildings house museums, bars, restaurants and shops that invite visitors in for a taste of chocolate, a swig of Belgian beer or a feel of the intricate and locally made lace.
In summer, tables and chairs dot market squares and invite tourists to take the weight off their feet, have a bite of lunch and bask in the sunshine. In winter, Bruges is transformed into a frosty wonderland, replete with ice-skating rinks, festive markets and steaming mugs of drinks that warm the extremities.
It's easy to get here and enjoy a Bruges city break. Flights into Ostend-Bruges International Airport take a little over an hour from most UK airports. Alternatively, you could catch a ferry to the nearby coast or use the Eurostar to get to Brussels before completing the journey by rail into Bruges.
Hotels in Bruges are of a good standard though the city can get very busy so it's advisable to secure accommodation well in advance of your trip.
It's easy to find great-value short breaks to Bruges. Simply use the price-comparison service on TravelSupermarket to check out the deals and to book your cheap break.