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Sipping coffee in Bruges: 5 favorites

Sipping coffee in Bruges: 5 favorites

5 favorite coffee spots in Bruges

I’ve thoroughly discussed my love for Bruges on here before, so a list of my favorite coffee spots couldn’t stay far behind. Whenever I plan a day trip there on the weekends, I like to try some new places or revisit old favorites. What I love about Bruges’ coffee scene is that there seems to be less of a hipster culture present. The people and places feel more authentic, which is so refreshing compared to other Belgian cities. If you’re a coffee geek like me and heading to Bruges soon, you’ll love these five places to enjoy your daily cup of joe.

5 favorite coffee spots in Bruges: Vero Caffè + Adriaan

Vero Caffè

Grabbing a coffee at Vero Caffè has become a fixed habit when visiting Bruges. It’s one of those spots that make you feel instantly at home, which isn’t surprising as its interior is literally living room goals. The coffee is definitely the highlight though. My favorite order? A cappuccino with a large piece of their white chocolate cake - so sweet but so good!

Coffeebar Adriaan

Housed in a 19th century building, Adriaan is a mix of a traditional Belgian coffee house and a modern bar. By traditional, I mean a typical breakfast at Adriaan consists of freshly baked crusty bread rolls with ham and cheese. Trust me, breakfast doesn’t get more Belgian than that. Before taking a sip of one of the many coffee options, be sure to stop and admire their collection of old coffee cans and grinders on display in the back of the shop. It’s gorgeous.

5 favorite coffee spots in Bruges: Kottee Kaffee

 Kottee Kaffee

“We do it for the locals” Didier, the owner of Kottee Kaffee, told me the first time we visited on my birthday two years ago. And you can taste the passion he and his wife put into their work, and food. Their bread basket formula is far from the average one. It includes seven different types of bread, all wheat-free, served with complementary spreads and delicious homemade jams. This cozy spot is hidden away in a quiet alley, but definitely worth looking for!
5 favorite coffee spots in Bruges: Margritt + Cafuné


Margritt is one of my more recent discoveries located in a charming side street of Bruges’ market square: the Sint-Amandsstraat. They offer good coffee, homemade bakes and several breakfast and lunch options. Don’t be fooled by the tiny space you see when you enter, there’s plenty more seats in the back of the place!


Cafuné is a specialty coffee bar that has recently opened its own roastery, which already gives away the high quality you can expect from their coffee. I always go for a cappuccino but they have several slow coffee options like Kalita and Aeropress as well. If you’re visiting in the afternoon and craving something sweet, you should have a go at their homemade apple turnover. Oh and for breakfast the banana pancakes are pretty awesome too.
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Maxime Loncke
48 hours in Leuven

48 hours in Leuven

Staycations have become my new favorite thing. I’ve always had this strong longing to see every far away country as long as it wasn’t my own. But I’ve come to realize there are so many Belgian cities I’ve yet to discover. The most well-known city trip destinations in Belgium - Ghent, Antwerp, Brussels and by now you know of my undying love for Bruges - are without a doubt all visit-worthy, but often cramped with tourists. The smaller ‘unexplored’ towns are logically left more authentic and are also more interesting budget-wise, which after our trip to not-so-cheap Copenhagen is something I’m definitely looking for right now. 

In August we decided to take it to Leuven for a short weekend. As the capital of Flemish Brabant, it’s a city full of history but it has a youthful aspect to it as well, seeing as many students from Leuven’s University live there during school months. Therefore hip cafes and innovative concepts have increasingly become a part of the city’s culture. For us it was the perfect choice for a two-day getaway. Read on for more details on how we spent 48 hours sightseeing, sipping coffee and shopping our way through Leuven.

See & do

The Great Beguinage + Saint John the Baptist Church 

We started our first day in Leuven with a visit to The Great Beguinage, which immediately stole my heart with its medieval charm. Its authentic sandstone houses and alleys date back to the 13th century. The Saint John the Baptist Church situated in the middle of the beguinage is also free for visitors.

Saint Peter's Church

Another notable church is Saint Peter’s. Located in the very heart of Leuven and originally built in 986, it’s the city’s oldest church and a beautiful example of late gothic architecture. Inside you can discover the most famous work of Flemish painter Dieric Bouts: The Last Supper.

The Town Hall

Leuven’s most remarkable building is without a doubt the Town Hall. It was built by three different architects and has 236 statues gracing its facade. If you’re interested in learning more about the history of the building, there are daily guided tours in Dutch, French and English where you can visit the council hall, the wedding hall and the reception rooms.
Tip: We booked our tickets beforehand via Visit Leuven. With the ILUVLeuven XL formula we got to visit the Town Hall, University Library and the M-Museum for only €16.

The University Library + Tower

If you’d like to visit Leuven’s University Library, do it on the weekend. Only then you’re free to walk around the reading room without having to bother any students - which I may have done to get this photo. Also make you sure your ticket includes the library tower: five floors take you up to the balcony where you can enjoy a wonderful view over Leuven. 

Stella Artois Brewery

There aren’t many cafes in Leuven that don’t serve Stella Artois beer, so visiting the brewery is kind of a given. I found it really interesting to see and hear all about how the beer is made and having visited a few breweries, I can say this was one of the better tours. There’s a tour every Saturday and Sunday and you can easily buy your tickets online here.

The M-Museum

Honestly we only visited the M-Museum because it was included in our ILUVLeuven Tickets. I’ve never really been a museum person, but it did add a nice bit of culture to our trip. The M always has new expositions going on so check their website to see the current program.

Food & shopping

Harvest Club

For a bit of eco-friendly shopping, check out Harvest Club on the charming Mathieu de Layens square. They sell everything from women’s, men’s and kids' clothing to beauty products and small deco items: all ethical and sustainable. And they have plants and cacti too!

Koffie en Staal

Koffie en Staal - literally ‘Coffee and Steel’ - specializes in coffee and lunch as well as handmade jewelry and furniture. So after you’ve enjoyed a delicious toast with hummus or a cappuccino on ice, be sure to take a peek at the lovely earrings, bracelets and necklaces in their little shop.

Bar Stan

Cozy vibes, great coffee and more cozy vibes: Bar Stan is my favorite breakfast spot in Leuven and definitely worth a little walk from the center. Imagine large sansevierias, vintage school chairs and the smell of fresh homemade granola. Sold? I know I am.


Just across from the Town Hall, you’ll find Nosh. This brunch spot is mostly known for its scrumptious bagels and American pancakes. We went for the latter in the maple syrup, yoghurt and blueberries version. Their menu also offers a couple of brunch formulas, from which I picked the ‘Veggie Breakfast’ with avocado toast, cheese and fried eggs - huge but delicious!

Thelma Coffee & Design

Thelma is a concept store combining designer clothing and interior bits with coffee and homemade (vegan) cake - which sadly we didn’t try. The shop is wonderfully bright and spacious, and a must-visit whilst shopping in Leuven as it’s located in a side street of one of the city’s most prominent shopping streets: the Diestsestraat.
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Maxime Loncke
15 things to do in Copenhagen

15 things to do in Copenhagen

Getting to explore a new city is always a joy and København quickly found a way to my heart. The capital is very lively and modern with lots of interesting historic sites, colorful buildings, lovely food and of course an endless amount of Danish design shops. We spent a good four days there and managed to squeeze in quite a lot of our to do list. To give you an idea of everything there is to discover in Copenhagen, I made an overview of all the places we visited along with some other tips and ended up with these 15 must do's!

Visit the Church of our Saviour

For the most beautiful view over Copenhagen the Church of Our Saviour is where you need to be. There are 400 steps to be climbed and because of it’s old structure trust me, it’s no picnic. But once you get to the top of the golden spiral staircase, the view is absolutely stunning. From Christiansborg to Amager and the entrance to Copenhagen’s harbor.

Take a walk through Kastellet

Kastellet is Copenhagen’s old citadel. It’s a star-shaped fortress with rows and rows of red barack buildings which used to house a garrison of about 1800 men. Though it remains an active military area as the head quarters of the Danish Defence Intelligence, the public is free to walk around and enjoy the bastion’s 17th century vibes and the beautiful green ramparts surrounding it. Also worth a visit is the St. Alban’s Church right next to the citadel.

See the (alternative) mermaid

There’s not much to see about the statue of The Little Mermaid and yet every first-time Copenhagen visitor makes the effort to go and take a picture of the famous landmark. If you’re one of them, here’s a fun fact: walk a bit further along the coast and you’ll discover the mermaid’s lesser-known younger sister. An alternative version known as the Genetically Modified Mermaid was sculpted by Bjørn Nørgaard in 2000.

Take a boat tour

A canal tour may sound like the obvious thing to do in a port city like Copenhagen, but honestly this was one of the highlights of our trip! We hopped on a boat near Nyhavn and were taken on a journey around the harbor by the most enthusiastic guide I’ve ever met. I loved being able to experience the city and its most famous parts like The Black Diamond, Amalienborg and Christianshavn from a different perspective.

Visit Rosenborg

I remember Rosenborg Castle to be the most charming building we visited in Copenhagen. It was built as a summer palace by Christian IV, Denmark’s longest-reigning monarch. As a visitor you’re free to explore the entire ground, first and second floor, where each room is more interesting than the last. Take a tour around Christian’s bedroom, magnificent marble room and pretend you’re attending a royal ball in the Knight’s Hall. In the basement treasury you can admire the Danish Crown Jewels.

The Botanical Gardens

Right across the street from Rosenborg, you can visit Copenhagen’s Botanical Gardens. I loved taking a stroll through the gardens and discovering all the different plant species. There are also some greenhouses which you can enter. The largest one is called The Palm House and has a passageway at the top to enjoy the view from above.

Grab a bite at Torvehallerne

Torvehallerne is a food market consisting of two large halls with over 60 stands. There’s a large variety of products from fresh fish to cheese, pizza, sweet pastries and the occasional flower shop. It’s the ideal spot to try Danish specialties like smørrebrød or a fresh cinnamon roll.

Hop on a ride in Tivoli

Founded in 1843, Tivoli Gardens is one of the oldest amusement parks in the world. There’s a wonderful sense of nostalgia to the place and the rides are all beautifully designed and detailed. The only downside is you have to pay for each ride individually and it can get quite expensive. Just taking a walk through the park is still a magical experience on its own though, especially when you visit at night and all the lights are twinkling.


I couldn’t leave this one out, could I? Nyhavn, or ‘New Harbor’, is probably the most photographed place in Copenhagen and for good reason. I was a bit afraid that it would be one of those overrated tourist traps but honestly it was even more beautiful than I’d imagined. I suspect during high season the place must be crowded with people but when we visited in May, there was an enjoyable fuss hanging in the air which I could really appreciate.

Eat a Danish hot dog

A hot dog is the obvious choice if you’re looking for a quick bite to eat in Copenhagen. Hot dog stands are scattered all around the city serving typical Danish sausages in a bun with mustard, ketchup, fried onions and other toppings of your choosing. If you’re looking for a vegan alternative, visit Den Økologiske Pølsemand next to The Round Tower.

Visit Christiansborg

Where to start? There’s a whole lot to learn and do at Christiansborg Palace. Its history is very interesting, as it’s actually a castle built on top of a row of other castles which either burnt down or were destroyed. Currently Christiansborg serves as the seat of the Danish Parliament as well as a location for the Queen of Denmark to host parties and gala banquets. The Royal Reception Rooms, Royal Stables and - my favorite - the Royal Kitchen are all open to visitors.

Visit Hans Christian Andersen’s grave

Thumbelina, the Princess and the Pea, the Ugly Duckling. Hans Christian Andersen wrote so many of my favorite fairytales so it seemed evident to pay a visit to his grave. He is buried at Assistens Kirkegård, which besides a cemetery is also a beautiful public park where locals love to gather for a picnic and relax under the trees.

Discover the shops in Jægersborggade

Start your exploration of the hip Nørrebro neighbourhood in Jægersborggade. The street is full of charming independent shops, art galleries and cafes. Immerse yourself in the plant heaven that is Plant København or shop a pair of sneakers while sipping coffee at - you guessed it - Sneakers & Coffee.

Snaregade & Magstræde

As I mentioned in my previous post, Snaregade and Magstræde are two charming cobbled streets and two of the oldest in Copenhagen. They’re not exactly the most beautiful, but there’s just something about them. It’s also fun to know that Einar and Gerda take a stroll through Snaregade in a scene from The Danish Girl.

Climb the Round Tower

One of Copenhagen’s most famous lookout points is the Round Tower or Rundetårn, the oldest functioning observatory in Europe. A spiral ramp instead of stairs makes the way up a bit more pleasant and once on top you can enjoy a view over the old part of Copenhagen.

More nice-to-knows

(Don’t) Visit Carlsberg

The biggest disappoint of our trip was without a doubt the Visit Carlsberg museum. We were pretty excited to take a tour around the old brewery but there really wasn’t much to see. The museum is really small and there’s barely any information anywhere, let alone any interactive media. The only positive thing to mention is the free beer at the end of the tour, but then there are more than enough places in Copenhagen to enjoy a Carlsberg in a cozier setting.

The Royal Library

There are two sides to Denmark’s Royal Library. Literally. The old building from 1906 has a garden which is very charming and a lovely spot to hang out during summer. Its waterfront extension, The Black Diamond, I found less interesting. It’s a striking piece of architecture from the outside, but when you enter there’s not much to see as most rooms are only accessible to readers and students. Guided tours are optional but mostly for large groups and they’re also quite expensive.

The Copenhagen Card

If you’re planning a vacation from 3-5 days, be sure to check out the advantages of getting a Copenhagen Card. With the card you can enter a lot of attractions for free and all public transport in the city is free as well. We found Copenhagen to be really expensive in general so we’re glad we got to save at least some money thanks to The Copenhagen Card. You either buy it online or get one at the information desk at the airport.
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Maxime Loncke
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