A Travellerspoint blog

The goth-themed bar in Brussels

overcast 16 °C

Today we venture south to Brussels. First stop is the Atmomium, a monument originally built for Expo '58.

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Curiosity almost gets the better of me as I pass the "Drug Opera" (see below... have we taken a wrong turn and arrived at Amsterdam??) but I resist temptation and venture on to fertile photographic territory centred on Brussels' Grote Markt (main square).

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The shot below is that of a chocolate replica of the Manneken Pis - a statue of a urinating boy and one of Brussels' major tourist attractions.

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Off the main square is "Le Cercueil", a goth-themed bar complete with skulls, coffin-tables, and an endless background drone of death-metal and thrash music. What better place to take the family? The snap I took doesn't do the place justice – the flash ruined the gloomy, dank ambience...

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After this it's a speedy trip back to Paris with no border crossings or currency exchanges to hinder us.

Posted by scottness 17:35 Archived in Belgium Tagged brussels Comments (0)

Antwerp's 446 year old cafe

semi-overcast 16 °C

I lived in Antwerp in the early 90's so this was more about reminiscing than sight-seeing. But the camera bug is hard to suppress - the following were taken in and around the Grote Markt (main square) and Meir.

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Note: You may have noticed Sam enhancing my appearance with "rabbit ears" above. Any attempt to return the favour was ruthlessly supressed:

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That last shot was taken at the "cafe Quinten Matsijs", the oldest cafe in Belgium, having been in existence since 1565. And how does one spend time in a 446 year old cafe? That's right - by playing uno...

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Posted by scottness 17:21 Archived in Belgium Tagged antwerp Comments (0)

The Belgian beer wall in Bruges

semi-overcast 16 °C

Whew! After a whirlwind start it's time to slow things down a bit ... by driving to another country and visiting three cities in as many days! That's right - we cram ourselves into a mini-van and head north to Belgium.

First stop is the historic town of Bruges. Bruges is renowned for it's medieval architecture and Belfort, the precarious ascent of which was made famous in this scene from the movie "In Bruges".

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Keen to try the local fare, though not much of a drinker, Evelyn seems almost overwhelmed by this vat of lager she's been served...

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Speaking of Belgian beers, all 780 of them are on display at the beer wall (a portion of which is shown below):

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(If there's enough reader interest I'll post the other eight snaps of the wall. Hell, I might even stitch them together to form a sort of beer panorama...)

After a liesurely river cruise it's time to head east to Antwerpen.

Posted by scottness 16:53 Archived in Belgium Tagged bruges Comments (0)

Prior planning is required for a trip to the Louvre

sunny 22 °C

A trip to Paris wouldn't be complete without a visit to the Louvre, but not without prior military-style planning as the sheer size of the place is overwhelming. We settled on the obligatory Mona Lisa/Egyptian Mummies/Code of Hammurabi triple whammy and hunt them down for a peek.

We've all seen the Mona Lisa before so I won't post it here. However, the layout and architecture of the museum itself is quite impressive:

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The Rodin Museum and surrounding grounds are much more relaxed. I particularly liked the sculpture of the hands shown below. It made me wonder if Rodin was ever tempted to depict someone "flipping the bird", just as a humorous side project ;)

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(That's me above with Mark and his family. Left to right: me, Sam, Ben, Mark, Evelyn)

To cap a full day of sight-seeing we made a quick dash to Napoleon's Tomb, at the southern end of the L'Hôtel national des Invalides.

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Posted by scottness 16:24 Archived in France Tagged paris Comments (0)

The stained glass windows of La Sainte-Chapelle

sunny 22 °C

OK, it's cathedral time. La Sainte-Chapelle doesn't disappoint with it's spectacular stained glass windows. Along the way we catch a glimpse of Notre Dame:

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Then we stop off at Centre Pompidou, Paris' main repository of modern art. I particularly like the giant, psychedelic foam cushion shown below – it looks like a great place to rest a pair of weary feet...

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Posted by scottness 04:05 Archived in France Tagged paris Comments (0)

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