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Groeningemuseum: Our most recommended tours and activities

From Paris: Day Trip to Bruges with Optional Seasonal Cruise

1. From Paris: Day Trip to Bruges with Optional Seasonal Cruise

Escape Paris for the day and cross the border to the capital of the West Flanders region of Flemish Belgium. The full-day tour, with round-trip transfers from central Paris, will take you to the UNESCO World Heritage city of Bruges, sometimes referred to as the “Venice of the North.” Enjoy a guided walk of the historically rich center, admiring the gothic-style City Hall, the ornate Renaissance architecture of the Place du Bourg, and the 12th-century Basilique du Saint-Sang (Basilica of the Holy Blood), among other attractions. Free time will be allocated for lunch at a local restaurant, where you can enjoy Belgian specialties, such as traditional moules frites (mussels and French fries) and an extensive selection of Belgian beers. A visit to the Groeningemuseum, home to Flemish master painters, such as van Eyck and Hieronymous Bosch is a popular way to spend an afternoon in Bruges. Alternatively, shop for handmade lace and Belgian chocolates in the city’s boutique stores. During the summer season, choose the guided option to enjoy a boat cruise along some of the most famous canals of Bruges, built as far back as the 12th century.

From Brussels: Day Trip to Bruges by Train

2. From Brussels: Day Trip to Bruges by Train

Travel to the medieval city of Bruges by train and take a 2.5-hour walking tour with an English-speaking guide on arrival. Marvel at the Minnewater that provides water to the canals and see the historical women-only convent of the Beguinage. Visit the city's only working brewery at De Halve Maan and get the chance to look inside the Hans Memling museum at the 12th-century Hospital of St. John. See one of the tallest brickwork towers in the world at the Church of Our Lady, where Michelangelo’s statue of the Madonna with Child can be found in the transept. Get a feel for everyday life at the historic Vis Markt (Fish Market) and look at the beautiful guildhalls on Tanners’ Square. Visit the Groeningemuseum and find one of Belgium's most famous Gothic buildings on the Markt (Market Square). Get 3 hours of free time to explore on your own. Take an optional canal cruise to appreciate the city from a different perspective before the train journey back to Brussels.

Bruges: City Sightseeing Self-Guided Audio Walking Tour

3. Bruges: City Sightseeing Self-Guided Audio Walking Tour

Bruges’s city plan hasn’t changed since the middle ages. On this walking tour, you’ll get to peek behind the curtain of history to see what life was like back then, on a journey through time. You’ll have the opportunity to immerse yourself in medieval Bruges where, through stories and quirky facts, you’ll get an understanding of what this city once was, and still is, all about. You’ll visit all the main sites and lesser known ones too. You’ll venture into little alleys, squares, inner courtyards and secret inner gardens that most visitors don’t see. By the end of the tour, you’ll know: • Why pigs were banned from the streets in the middle ages and Bruges still keeps swans in its canals • The barbershop symbol’s connection to a medieval hospital • Exactly where within the city you were considered safe from the law • Why Bruges’s citizens are called “the fools” • How a heroic blind donkey got a street named after him • The reason sightings of witches and angels could have been real • Why urine was traded in one tiny square, and where sayings like “piss-poor” originate from I’m a traveler and I started Legends Tours with a friend after years of taking tours and realising that I only remember the quirky, interesting facts along the way. Legends Tours brings history to life through entertaining stories, so after this tour you’ll be sure to have plenty of fun facts to share with others. This tour suits first time travelers, Bruges locals, folks interested in history, and even quickly bored kids. Allow at least 90 minutes for the tour but feel free to take your time, linger in some of the bars and restaurants en route, and take as many photos as you desire.

From Brussels: Bruges & Ghent Full-Day Trip

4. From Brussels: Bruges & Ghent Full-Day Trip

Discover the highlights of Bruges and Ghent, Belgium's most attractive cities, with a round trip by train from Brussels. Tour two of the most fascinating medieval cities in Europe with an English/Spanish or French-speaking guide on a 10-hour guided day trip. Depart from the Grand Place at 9:30 AM only on Sunday. Upon arrival at the central station of Bruges, begin with a 2.5-hour walking tour and 2 hours of free time for eating, souvenirs, and a boat trip. The scheduled return to Brussels will be at 17:00 and arrival at 6 PM with your guide. In the case of small groups, there is the possibility of choosing between returning with the guide at the scheduled time or spending more time there and returning later by yourselves. Program in Bruges: In the ancient city wall park, the "Lake of Love" is one of the main water reservoirs nourishing the canal system of the Venice of the North. Visit the Beguinage, one of the best-preserved examples of medieval gated communities in which only women could live. See Brewery De Halve Maan, the only brewery still operating in the city center. Afterward, Old St. John’s Hospital is one of the oldest hospitals in Europe, where you can appreciate 800 years of European architecture, learn about its history and visit the museum of Hans Memling (optional). Head on to Our Lady of Bruges one of the oldest churches in the city. Admire its impressive tower which is still one of the tallest brickwork towers in the world, and take a look at its art treasures, including Michelangelo’s Madonna with the Child (optional). Stop by the VisMarkt (fishmarket) and the Tanners’ Square, two of the oldest squares in Bruges with their beautiful guildhalls and lovely cafés and restaurants. You will also visit the Groeninge Museum, Burg Square, and Markt Square, the economic heart of Bruges. Admire its imposing guildhalls and its Belfort tower, which is one of the most famous Gothic buildings in Belgium. In the end, have an optional canal tour (8 EUR per person, pay while embarking on the boat), which is one of the best ways to see Bruges. Program in Ghent: Journey to the port city of Ghent, located at the scenic confluence of the Leie and Scheldt Rivers. Start your tour of the historic city at Saint Bavo Cathedral and admire the spectacular Gothic church and Baroque ornamentations. Next, step into the marble choir and private chapels, and appreciate the painting of “Saint Bavo Enters the Convent at Ghent” by Rubens and the beauty of the Rococo pulpit. Look at the stunning frescoes of the Romanesque crypt. Then, opt to visit the altarpiece of "The Adoration of the Mystic Lamb" by the Van Eyck brothers and admire one of the most important works of art from the Middle Ages for a small extra fee. Continue to City Hall to see its extraordinary mix of Gothic, Renaissance, and Baroque architecture. Go to Market Hall to look at the Belfort Tower and the covered market. Marvel at the nearby churches of Saint Nicholas, Saint James, and Saint Michael, serving as reminders of Ghent’s medieval past. Proceed to the old port of Graslei for beautiful views of the river Leie and the old guildhalls. Then, head to the medieval castle of Gravensteen, where the counts of Flanders used to live. Explore the picturesque district of Patershol and see charming buildings with brick facades where restaurants and cafes offer the best Flemish cuisine. Finally, head to the 15th-century Great Butchers' Hall to discover one of Europe's oldest meat markets.

Bruges: City Highlights Exploration Game

5. Bruges: City Highlights Exploration Game

Think you can solve challenges on your phone to discover the highlights of Bruges? It’s time for a sightseeing exploration game. Play on your own and pause to stop at places you like, or race competitively against your friends to the Lake of Love.  Start at ‘T Zand information point, solving the challenges as the story unfolds. Follow exact directions on your phone to guide yourself to the next location.

Bruges: Ticket Groeningemuseum (Groeninge Museum)

6. Bruges: Ticket Groeningemuseum (Groeninge Museum)

Step into the Groeninge Museum, where you'll embark on a fascinating journey through six centuries of art. Our collection features paintings by renowned artists who once called the Low Countries home, primarily in Bruges during the late 15th and early 16th centuries. Icons like Jan van Eyck, Hans Memling, and Hieronymus Bosch have left an enduring legacy in the world of European art. Beyond these classics, you'll also discover a diverse array of historical artifacts, vibrant flower pieces, and grand canvases by Jacob van Oost. As you explore, you'll encounter the world of Bruges neo-classical artists from the 18th and 19th centuries, including Joseph-Benoît Suvée and Jean Bernard Duvivier, who began their artistic journey in Bruges and achieved international recognition with their captivating history pieces and refined portraits. Venturing further into the museum, you'll find art from the 19th and 20th centuries, featuring the works of artists like Edmond van Hove, Ferdinand Khnopff, Emile Claus, and Flemish expressionists such as Permeke, De Smet, Van de Woestyne, and Brusselmans. The Groeninge Museum also proudly houses the complete editions of Marcel Broodthaers' printed works, several masterpieces by Georges Van Tongerloo, and striking paintings by Paul Delvaux and René Magritte. Don't miss the post-war works of Raoul De Keyser and Roger Raveel. Our dynamic institution is more than just a static display. We regularly feature engaging temporary exhibitions, focus displays, and ongoing research projects that result in exhibitions with international appeal. So come and immerse yourself in the world of art, and experience the rich tapestry of creativity that is the Groeninge Museum.

Bruges: 2.5-Hour Private Walking Tour

7. Bruges: 2.5-Hour Private Walking Tour

Discover Bruges, a growing tourist destination in Belgium, for the beautiful medieval town center still intact. Customize this private tour to your interests and comfort, such as walking, coach or driving. With the plethora of museums in Bruges, the highlights of museums and popular restaurants will be recommended to help you establish your visit in Bruges. See the old facades reflect in the canals and give Bruges its charm. Find out why the entire town center is listed as UNESCO World Heritage. Admire beautiful buildings, stately churches, wandering canals and picturesque alleys. Enjoy a boat ride along the canal, and relax while seeing the sights. Purchase lunch and catch a boat ride during the break.  See the Lake of Love, the Beguinage, the Walplein with the de Halve Maan brewery, the St. John's Hospital with masterpieces by Hans Memling, the Church of Our Lady with Michelangelo's Madonna, the Gruuthuse Museum and the Dijver with the Groeninghe Museum, The Tanners' Sqaure, The Fish market, The Burgplein with the town hall, the Market Square with the Belfry, the Cloth Halle, the former post office and the guild houses along the way.

Bruges: City Must-Sees Private Walking Tour

8. Bruges: City Must-Sees Private Walking Tour

Delve into the heart of Bruges with a local guide, starting at the picturesque Markt Square, where you will unravel the city's fascinating past as a medieval trading hub. Learn about Bruges' tumultuous relationship with the French king and its pivotal role in shaping European history. As you journey through the city, marvel at the stunning architecture of the Belfort and delve into the halls behind the belfry, discovering its significance in the Middle Ages. Continue to the Gruuthusemuseum, once the residence of a wealthy beer-trading family, and the historic Sint-Janshospitaal, one of the oldest hospitals in the world. Wander through the tranquil Princely Beguinage Ten Wijngaarde, the largest beguinage in the world, and hear tales of the community that has resided there for over 800 years. Stop by the renowned De Halve Maan Brewery to learn the story behind Bruges' nickname, the 'Fools of Bruges,' and see a piece of the beer pipeline that runs beneath the city. As you stroll along the Minnewater Lake, known as the Lake of Love, discover the legend of the swans that grace Bruges' canals and the city's conflict with Emperor Maximilian of Austria. Admire the awe-inspiring architecture of Onze-Lieve-Vrouwekerk, home to Michelangelo's Madonna and Child statue, and explore the Groeningemuseum's garden, showcasing works by Flemish masters. Your journey concludes at the historic Burg Square, the political heart of Bruges and the birthplace of this enchanting city.

Brugge:private walking tour, highlights, local guide

9. Brugge:private walking tour, highlights, local guide

Walk along the romantic canals and through the cobblestones streets of a world heritage city. Discover worlds famous highlights; the Lake of Love, the Beguinage, St. Johns Hospital, the Church of Our Lady, the Burg Square with the Town Hall, the Basilica of the Holy Blood, the Market Square the Belfry... Bruges is known worldwide for its chocolate and in particular for its delicious pralines. Are you looking for a unique way to discover Bruges where you can also taste the delicious city chocolate? Then you are at the right place with this highlights & chocolate walk. A unique experience!

From Paris: Private Bruges Tour

10. From Paris: Private Bruges Tour

Enjoy a 12-hour  private tour of Bruges from Paris. Take advantage of a private vehicle with a chauffeur at your disposition, and a local expert guide in Bruges for 3 hours. The city of Bruges is located in the Northwest of Belgium, known as the ''Venice of the North''. Your guide will show you the main attractions of the city, starting with the historical center declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. After you see the old town, you will visit other places like the Belfry – known for being one of the most famous landmarks in Belgium – the Basilica of the Holy Blood, and the Groeninge Museum that holds paintings of the most famous Flemish artists.  You will also get to see the Church of Our Lady, known for being the tallest in Belgium. Visit a relic from Medieval times at the Béguinage.To finish with the tour, you will have some time to admire the streets of the city and to try its typical gastronomy before your chauffeur takes you back to Paris.

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What people are saying about Groeningemuseum

Overall rating

(282 reviews)

I recently had the pleasure of taking a day trip to Bruges from Paris .Throughout the tour, our guide Arnold shared fascinating historical insights and anecdotes about the city, its architecture, and its rich cultural heritage. His passion for Bruges was evident in every story he told, making the journey not only informative but also incredibly engaging. I highly recommend this tour.

Absolutely fantastic!!! I’m not a native English speaker, but understood Nicholas perfectly. Amazing spots to visit, and if I wanted to spend more time or visit the attraction I simply pressed pause. I actually spent the whole day doing this. Loved the not so well known spots, and the stories… oh they were perfect. You just have to add one chocolate activity to complete your day.

Great day out guide was very knowledgeable and answered all questions Plenty of history in Bruges and our guide was excellent throughout Train journey was good we made our own way back to Brussels as we wanted to sample some of the numerous Belgium beers

Fantastic. Used my pass to see 7 of the museums and only having one day in Bruges…it turned out to be perfect.

Great - my third time in Bruges and I love the place but the weather was awful