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Oktober 2019

Travel United Kingdom

Beautiful Bristol Places

I have already been to several places in England. The places I visited are London, Newcastle, Canterbury and Manchester. Now, VisitBritain invited me to discover a new part of England: I travelled to BRISTOL! I am going to show you 4 places I liked the most and the amazing place where I stayed during my visit! 🤗

 ① COLLEGE GREEN & BRISTOL CATHEDRAL

College Green is a small park located in the centre of the city, I would say it is more just a meadow surrounded by beautiful buildings. Like this one up here. It’s the Bristol City Council. What I like about this building is that it has a lovely regular façade and there is also kind of a pond in front of it which creates a beautiful reflection! ☺️ It is also charming because it is not a straight building as official like these are; it is sort of round!

Right next to this wonderful building is Bristol Cathedral. It’s just on the opposite side of College Green. It reminds me a lot of Notre Dame in Paris. The towers really look quite the same, don’t you think? Bristol Cathedral was founded in 1140, so it is reaaally old. The building itself is characteristically known for its material with which it was built of: the Bath Stone. 🤓 When you are not from this part of England, you are surely wondering what this about. Well, Bath is a town close to Bristol as you may know. The Bath Stone was particularly used in South West England, so the region of Bristol and Bath, and it is defined as a chalkstone which has little mineral bubbles if you have a closer look. If you are in geology or archeology this would be your thing, right? 😂 Back to the photos. As the little pond in front of Bristol City Council is just next to Bristol Cathedral as well, you can also use this for wonderful reflections of the church. 👀

②  VIEW FROM CABOT TOWER

If you want to enjoy a view over Bristol, then Cabot Tower will the best choice! You will find it on Brandon Hill (the park is super calm, but very steep as well 😂). The entrance is for free and you can see kind of everything from up there. For example you’ll be able to see parts of the University of Bristol Law School, Christ Church Clifton, Bristol Cathedral, the Suspension Bridge and much more! By the way, I met a little friend at the entrance of Cabot Tower. 🤗🐿

③  REDCLIFFE’S PARADE

You are looking for colorful houses in Bristol? Go to this street, Redcliffe’s Parade is wonderful residential street with many colourful façades which remind you of Notting Hill. A must for every Instagrammer in town! 🤓🌈

④ CLIFTON

If I had to choose to live in one neighbourhood in Bristol, then it would definitely be Clifton. It is like a village and also there you have many many colorful streets.You really have the Notting Hill feeling here! The streets are really steep but this didn’t stop me to discover the entire village by foot. Actually I took the bus once, and that was from the train station to my accommodation  (read below to know where I slept 😉). Here are some impressions of Clifton Village for you:

Located in Clifton, you can find one of Bristol’s most known landmarks: the Suspension Bridge. From the Clifton Observatory you have the best view on the bridge! 😄 The bridge is 412m (450 yards) long and 75m (82 yards) above the ground! If you want to cross the bridge, it is mandatory to pay £1. Every year 4 million (!) vehicles take the road across the bridge! The river underneath is called Avon for everyone who was interested. 😛

⑤  CHRISTMAS STEPS

In my opinion one of the most insta-worthy places in Bristol. The Christmas Steps really give you the Diagon Alley vibe (a little bit 😉). It is not so far away from Bristol Cathedral and College Green.😊

WHERE I STAYED

I stayed for two nights in Bristol, to be more exact at Beech House. Their concept is about luxury, boutique serviced apartments. I really liked the fact that I had a little flat for me, with a kitchen, bathroom, a really comfy bed and very nice living room. I really liked the big windows in my room. Zee, the receptionist gave me the chance to visit other rooms as well, since every room/apartment is designed differently. Some have more light coming into and others are more traditional. I can really recommend staying there! In the morning I had tea and porridge and everything was provided by Beech House. Thank you so much for this very warm welcome! ☺️ 

You can check out the accommodation right here: beechhousebristol.co.uk

BEECH HOUSE

6 St Paul’s Road, Bristol, BS8 1LT, United Kingdom


DISCLAIMER: Thank you really much to VisitBritain and Visit Bristol (Advertisement*) for making this trip possible! Thank you Beech House Bristol for their kind hospitality!  But I would like to mention here that I wrote this article on my own and all opinions remain my own.Bildergebnis für visitbristol logo Bildergebnis für visitbritain

Belgium Travel

A roadtrip through Belgium by train

Belgium is one of the most interesting countries when it comes to Europe. The country where the fries were invented, country of the Smurfs and Tintin (for everybody not knowing: famous comics ;)), home to to best waffles and chocolate in the world, and much more! Last spring I went to Belgium and (re)discovered all of this. In the following I want to give you tips and suggestions what to see and visit when your are in Belgium! Venez avec moi and Kom met mij mee! (Quick fun fact at the beginning: French and Flemish are both the official languages of Belgium). 🤓

BRUSSELS

How to get there?

The most relaxing (and nowadays most importantly) most eco-friendly way of traveling to Belgium from Germany is by train. As Thalys, a private train company from Belgium, has a direct route from Cologne to Brussels, we were very honoured to be travelling first class and enjoy a delicious meal on board, since we were traveling during lunch time. The journey from Cologne to Brussels Midi doesn’t even take you 2 hours which is really convenient! And the seats are really comfy hehe 😜

Arrived in Brussels Midi, the biggest and most important train station in town, we took the metro (underground) to get to our hotel, the Radisson RED Brussels, in the European Quarter. The underground network in Brussels is not that big but sufficient for the city! There are 6 metro lines bringing you from one place to another in the city, I really recommend taking the metro, it was clean and fast! We had a 72h ticket for bus, tram and metro and it only costs 18,00€. Thank you to VisitBrussels to have sponsored it us!

Where to stay?

We stayed at the Radisson RED Brussels for the two first nights. The hotel is located only a few steps away from the European Parliament and Brussels Luxembourg Station. As the name says it, the design of the rooms is red and white but still quite minimal, which I like a lot. The breakfast buffet was perfect as well! The category of the hotel is four stars.

Radisson Red Brussels, Rue d’Idalie 35, 1050 Brussels 

🚍 LUXEMBOURG  lines 34, 38, 71, 80, 95

🚇 TRÔNE lines 2 & 6

🚈 LUXEMBOURG STATION regional trains

What to visit?

Brussels is full of beautiful sites to visit! Here are my favorite places I visited during my time in Brussels:

  • GRAND-PLACE/GROTE MARKT

For me it is one of the most beautiful squares in entire Europe. It is surrounded by beautiful houses decorated with golden details and much more. Did you know that this square is part of the UNESCO World Heritage since 1988? In my opinion, truly deserved! Come here in the morning if you don’t want to have a crowd in your photos. And if the weather is nice, you can play with the light at sunrise. 🤗

In the middle of the square on one side: the City Hall. It reminds me a bit of the ones that you can find in Vienna or Munich. Daniel and I even got the chance to visit from the inside. We had a guide who showed us around different offices and halls. Unfortunately this part of the City Hall is not open for public. But you can sneak in here through my photos. 😉

HOW TO GET THERE?

🚃  Bourse/Beurs (tram lines 3, 4, 42)

🚇  De Brouckère (metro lines 1 & 5 )  > 5 min by foot (400m)

🚍  Grand-Place/Grote Markt (lines 33, 48, 95)

  • GALERIES ROYALES SAINT-HUBERT/SINT-HUBERTUSGALERIJ

If you follow me on Instagram, you will surely know that I LOVE galleries! 😍 This one, actually these ones, got my heart immediately. They are called the King’s gallery and the Queen’s gallery. On the photo you can see the Queen’s one. In these galleries you can find shops like chocolate shops or jewelry shops, cafés and restaurants. It is ALWAYS open, so 24/7! 😄 Together with the Galleria Vittorio Emmanuele II in Milan, Italy and the Passage (Пассаж) in Saint-Petersburg, it is one of the galleries which was taken as a model for future galleries. By the way, of all these three, the one in Brussels is the oldest! It was opened back in 1847!

HOW TO GET THERE?

Actually, it is only a one minute walk from the Grand-Place/Grote Markt! So, you can use the stations I listed above, but these connections are possible as well (the only change are the bus lines):

🚃  Bourse/Beurs (tram lines 3, 4, 42) > 3 min by foot (280m)

🚇  De Brouckère (metro lines 1 & 5 )  > 2 min by foot (130m)

🚍  Arenberg (lines 26, 66, 71)

Go there in the evening or in the morning if you don’t want to have dozens of tourists you. 😉

 

  • MONT DES ARTS/KUNSTBERG

One of the best places to shoot views from the city centre from above is definitely Mont des Arts! It is located very close to Grand-Place and the Royal Galleries. Come here at sunset to shoot the city in a fantastic light! You can even spot the Basilica of the Sacred Heart behind the tower of the City Hall 😄.  It is also very close to the Central Train Station of Brussels (not Brussels Midi!!!). So if you only have like 40-50 minutes to change, why don’t you check out this view?

HOW TO GET THERE?

🚃  Royale/Koning (tram lines 92 & 93) > located at the top, from there you can walk down 😊

🚇  Gare Centrale (metro lines 1 & 5 )  > 3 min by foot (250m)

🚍  Bibliotheek (lines 33, 48, 95)

WHAT IS CLOSE TO THIS PLACE?

ROYAL PALACE (PALAIS DE BRUXELLES)

When you are at the top of Mont des Arts, you can just walk a few meters more up and then you will soon the Royal Palace where the Belgian Royal family lives. The current King of the Belgians is Philippe (since 2013). Did you know that the front of the Royal Palace in Brussels is longer than the one of Buckingham Palace in London? 😛 

CATHEDRAL OF ST. MICHAEL AND ST. GUDULA

If you are into churches, you need to visit this one. It’s a cathedral since 1962 and it since then a co-cathedral in Brussels. Yes, things like these exist 😅. I have also been to another co-cathedral, to the one Valletta, Malta. But that’s a different story. 😉

 

  • PALAIS DE JUSTICE/JUSTITIEPALEIS

This may be the most impressive in Brussels. The Palace of Justice is a massive building, not very far from Mont des Arts. It is told that the renovation of the whole monument will only be finished in 2040!!! This is in more than twenty years… 👀  There is a middle part which is not completely inside but not outside either, which is perfect for Instagram photos 🤗. It is the biggest Palace of Justice in the world!

HOW TO GET THERE?

🚃  Poelaert (tram lines 92 & 93)  // Louise (tram lines 8, 92, 93, 97)

🚇  Louise (metro lines 2 & 6 )

🚍  Poelaert (line 33)

LEUVEN

Around 30km from Brussels is located the town of Leuven (Louvain). We took the train from Brussels Central and the train ride was not even about 30 minutes with the IC. Leuven is in the Flemish part of Belgium, so different as in Brussels, which is bilingual, people in Leuven only talk Flemish, which can be considered as a Dutch dialect. Leuven is actually quite big. It has more than 1oo,000 inhabitants. 🤓 We decided to visit on our road trip through Belgium because we heard a lot of positive opinions about the city and the architecture is really typical for Flanders, so definitely a MUST SEE! 😊 The place I liked best was the Town Hall with its many many details, a perfect example of Gothic architecture in Flanders.

🚄 Train-Station: LEUVEN  Time to Brussels: 27 minutes (IC)

BRUGES

Welcome to the Venice of the North, or at least one of them 😛. As you know cities like Amsterdam or Saint-Petersburg are also called as „Venice of the North“, but Bruges really is one. From Brussels by train you can reach Bruges within an hour. So can easily think of a day trip to Bruges as we did it! 🤗 You have canals everywhere, you have cute houses everywhere, we had good weather, what do you want more?! 😅 Here are some places in Bruges I really liked! Just click on the names to see the location on Google Maps.

BRAAMBERGSTRAAT                                                                       BONIFACIUSBRUG

SIMON STEVINPLEIN                                                                       STEENSTRAAT

🚄 Train-Station: BRUGGE  Time to Brussels: 65 minutes (IC)

GHENT

As we combined Bruges and Ghent in a day trip from our „base“ Brussels, we didn’t have much time in both cities. However we managed to see some parts of Ghent as well! Here are the places we visited in Ghent, one of the biggest cities in Belgium.

FRIES, FRIES AND EVEN MORE FRIES!

I didn’t count how many times I ate fries in Belgium (the best in the world!) but too much I suppose 😂 But it is so handy! Everywhere you look in Belgian cities there is ALWAYS a Friterie or Frituur 🍟 Did you know why fries were invented? So, the Belgians invented the „French Fries“ , how obvious haha! As Belgium is located near the North Sea and there are many rivers people used to eat much fried fish back in the 1600s. Though in winter, as the rivers were frozen, the Belgians had a genius idea and took potatoes as a substitute! Since then you can eat fries all year long, not only in winter 😛. On the left you can see a typical portion of fries sold in a friterie. In the back you can see Gravensteen, an old castle from the 10th century.

 

Ghent is known for its channels as well as Bruges. It’s the second largest city in Flanders and it is also a university city, over 25 % of the inhabitants in Ghent are students. 📚 We only spend two hours in Ghent but I can really recommend to walk around Sint-Niklaaskerk, Ghent’s most famous church, because there is the channel to walk along etc. Really nice atmosphere! 😊

🚄 Train-Station: GENT SINT-PIETERS  Time to Brussels: 30 minutes (IC)

ANTWERP

Yes, I think we had the same reaction. As we arrived to our last stop on our road trip with the SNCB at Antwerp Central we were so impressed by this beautiful and breathtaking building which a train station! I don’t even want to compare it to the train station of my hometown (because it is really ugly haha). But this is a great start to start visiting Antwerp, the second biggest city (population) in Belgium! Thank you to VisitAntwerp for organizing this stop of our trip! Please let me show you around in Antwerp ☺️

  • GROTE MARKT & CITY CENTRE

I love these big central squares in Belgium, typically there are called Grote Markt or Grand-Place. The thing that I like about the one in Antwerp are these façades who are all the same but yet different! ☺️ These houses are also typical for Flemish architecture which can be found all over Belgium and also in the North of France, which also once was Flemish. 🤓 Do you know the French name for Antwerp? It’s ANVERS. But French is apparently not so important in Flanders. Even when you watch TV in Belgium, the Flemish programme is Flemish Television and the one in French names itself Belgian Television. There is no real unity between these two parts of Belgium (Wallonia and Flanders). But not only can you find beautiful façades in Grote Markt but also Handschoenmarkt, which you can see here on the right. From there you can go for walk through the entire city centre.

HOW TO GET THERE?

🚃  Groenplaats (tram line 4) –> In Antwerp the tram does also go underground!

🚍  Groenplaats (lines 22, 180, 181, 182, 183)

  • MUSEUM AAN DE STROM

Next up is a museum, but not only. You can go up to the top for a panoramic view over the city. To the south you see the city centre with the Cathedral (Onze-Lieve-Vrouwekathedraal), to the west you see the river Schelde and you can even spot the Loodsgebouw, to the north you can spot the harbour and to the east you can see Antwerpen-Noord.

HOW TO GET THERE?

🚃 MAS (tram lines 7 & 70)

🚍 Van Schoonbekeplein (line 17)

OPENING HOURS OF THE MUSEUM AAN DE STROM

Monday closed, every other day of the week: 10:00-17:00

Hanzestedenplaats 1, 2000 Antwerpen

mas.be

  • PORT AUTHORITY & STREET ART

This building is simply impressive. It’s the Port Authority Building in the north of Antwerp. It is a Neo-futurist architectural masterpiece designed by the one and only Zaha Hadid. Very nice place for photographers who are into architecture! I love the combination of old and modern! Just have a closer look!

When you continue walking around you will see some street art in this area. Here are some of the works I found.

HOW TO GET THERE?

🚍 Royerssluis (lines 763 & 764)

🚄 Train-Station: ANTWERPEN CENTRAAL  Time to Brussels: 70 minutes (IC)

HOW TO TAKE THE TRAIN IN BELGIUM

Thanks to SNCB we had the chance to use the GoUnlimited Pass. During school holidays for people under 26, the SNCB proposes a pass that allows you to travel with ANY train of the SNCB in Belgium. This was so amazing for us because like that we could easily jump on a train to discover different cities in Belgium. It only costs 15€ for one week (all school holidays) and 25€ for an entire month (only summer holidays). Click on this link to get more information! Really recommend it!


DISCLAIMER: Thank you to all my partners who made this trip possible. For transparency, here’s a list of all organizations and hotels who provided me help during my trip in Belgium. I got sponsored, but didn’t receive any money.

Ähnliches Foto    Bildergebnis für radisson red brussels logo   Bildergebnis für visit brussels logo   Logo de Société nationale des chemins de fer belges Bildergebnis für atypisch antwerpen

 

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