Let me confess you a little soft spot: for me personally, Bruges is the most romantic town in Europe. It just can’t compete with Paris or Venice. This opinion may be due to the fact that I like small towns, which are still not too crowded. Even though tourism in Bruges is growing with every season, you’ll still find many picturesque corners that invite you to sit down and forget about time. And take photographs of Bruges most beautiful squares and locations.
Let me take you on a photographic journey along Bruges most photogenic and scenic places.
During the late springs and summer months, Bruges can get extremely crowded. Indeed some locals are already complaining about “overtourism”. In order to avoid the crowds, I recommend to visit during autumn and winter. Even though you may risk that the weather may not be the best, the mists will give the town a very mysterious touch.
My favorite moment to go on photography tours in Bruges is during night. The crowds are gone or are enjoying a delicious Flemish dish and you’ll have the town with its hidden corners for your own. Indeed the warm light tremendously enhances the enchantment of Bruges.
Any season makes Bruges a great setting for photography tours. Indeed the town seems to change with every season: Winter covers the old houses with a white blanket and during spring thousands of flowers are blooming in Bruges’ numerous parks and balconies.
As I love to showcase my photographic work on Instagram, I’d like to share with you some of Bruges’ most Instagram-worthy places.
For this post I didn’t follow a certain route or previously checked the spots I wanted to visit. I just wandered through the picturesque streets of Bruges and tried to capture its beauty as much as possible. On top, photography tours are for me yet another form of traveling slow and to pay attention to the hidden details of a destination.
I attach you a map with all the mentioned locations at the end of the post.
Have you been in Bruges? I’d like to hear about your favorite places to visit and to shoot.
This post contains some affiliate links. They help me running this site and come without any extra cost for you.
Table of Content
8. Burg Square
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1. Beguinage of Bruges
The Beguinage is my favourite place in Bruges to shoot photos. Despite figuring on every tourist itinerary, it still has this serene and quiet atmosphere.The former convent is indeed an oasis of peace and it’s the perfect place to stroll around. It used to be inhabited by the emancipated, but living in a spare and pious lifestyle.
In spring hundreds of flowers, mostly daffodils, are popping up in the convent garden and will add an additional touch of color to the place.
Please consider that the Beguinage is a place of worship and do not walk on the flowers please :) They are just sooo pretty.
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2. Minnewater Park
The Minnewater Park (Park of Love) is located next to the Beguinage convent. It’s the perfect place to get lost with your beloved one and an utterly romantic location. The Sashuis and the cute little restaurant next to the lake of Minnewater are the perfect setting for a photo shoot.
It is said that if you walk over the lake bridge with your partner, you'll be in love forever.
It may be highly probable that you’re not alone, as hundreds of swans are either having a nap or swimming around. And is there anything more romantic than 2 swans swimming below one of Bruges’ scenic bridges?
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The Rozenhoedkaai is the favorite place for photography lovers. Here any photo will be postcard-perfect! It is probably also one of the most photographed places in Bruges.
During the day the place may be extremely crowded, but once night falls, the Rozenhoedkaai is one of Bruges’ most beautiful spots. The nocturnal light enhances the beauty of this emblematic place.
If you want to get a more secluded place to shoot this location at night, I recommend to go to the Hotel Croix de Bourgogne in the street of Wollestraat.
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4. Market Place - Belfry
Every Bruges visitor will pass along the bustling Market Square of Bruges. It’s the nerve centre where all the streets of Bruges come together. You’ll be spoilt for photo motives: the colorful house fronts, the impressive Belfry tower, the towering statue in the center of the Markt Square, the intricate front of the provincial court….
I also recommend to take the challenge and climb the stairs of the Belfry tower as you’ll have the best panoramic view over the lovely town of Bruges and its numerous towers.
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5. Oud Sint-Jan
The site of Oud Sint-Jan is a former hospital that was turned into a event and congress centre. It’s quite secluded and not that easy to find. It’s the perfect place to escape the crowds for a while.
However it is a great location to rest and and get some nice photographic perspectives on Bruges’ most emblematic churches such as the Church of Our Lady.
There’s a lovely magnolia tree close to the Way of the Cross and I absolutely want to come back when it’s blooming in spring.
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6. Walplein Square
The Walplein is a cute little square located close to the Beguinage of Bruges. I liked it for its numerous terraces and a being relatively quiet place.
Indeed there are not so many crowds and I loved absorbing the vibes while having a coffee in the first spring sunshine. Eventually a horse carriage would walk past.
In spring and summer, the trees provide a lovely shade on the terraces. The square hosts the last operating brewery, "De Halve Maan", in the city center and a lovely hat shop.
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7. Jan Van Eyck Square
The Jan Van Eyck Square is located at the intersection of Academiestraat, Spiegelrei and Spanjaardstraat in Bruges.
The statue of the renowned painter Jan Van Eyck majestically overlooks what formerly was the harbor of Bruges. The houses located on the square used to belong to rich traders and porters.
Nowadays it became a coveted photo motive with its scenic bridges and house fronts.
One can still intuit the wealth of these people when gazing at the beautiful house fronts. The atmosphere of the Jan Van Eyck Square is simply captivating and has several places to shoot great photographs. Sunset and sunrise is the best moment to photograph this beautiful place.
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8. Burg Square
The Burg Square of Bruges is full of history and holds probably one of the most beautiful buildings of the city: the Gothic Town Hall (Stadhuis).
The square used to be the base of the Counts of Flandres and thus it’s the epicenter of the religious and political power.
Other impressive buildings of the Burg Sqaure are the Old Court House and the Basilica of the Holy Blood. Even though the basilica is the smallest building of the square it has the most intriguing history. Apart the beautiful interior of the basilica, the relic of a cloth with blood of Jesus attracts hundreds of visitors every day.
The Old Court House and the Gothic Town Hall of Bruges is separated by a narrow passage which links the Burg Square to the old fish market. This is yet another great motive for your photographs from Bruges.
Accommodation Sights map
9. The windmills of Bruges
The windmills of Bruges are located in the outskirts of the towns. It’s the perfect spot to get away from the crowds and to enjoy a lovely sunset above the town of Bruges. Indeed the view above Bruges’ numerous towers and picturesque houses is easy to fall in love with.
The mills as the skyline of Bruges are ideal motives for your photographs.
There used to be more than 20 windmills in the ramparts of Bruges, but nowadays only 4 are left between the Kruispoort and Dampoort.
During spring and summer months, the grass surrounding the windmills is the perfect place to have a picnic or a drink with friends.
Accommodation Sights map
10. Bonifacius Bridge
The Bonifacius Bridge is probably the cutest of Bruges’ countless bridges. It is located at the Arents Courtyard, another perfect place to escape the crowds of Bruges’ busier streets.
The area will spoil you for photogenic scenes: the impressive Church of Our Lady, the horse drawn carriages, the cute tiny Bonifacius bridge, the Gothic facade of the Gruuthuse Palace…
Even though the Bonifacius bridge looks very old, it actually only dates back to 1910. But this doesn’t prevent that it remains one of Bruges’ most scenic locations.
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Have you visited Bruges? What was your favorite place or photo location? I can't wait to hear about it in the comment section.
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