After our Summer together on the East Coast, Caoliang had to go back to work and back to Europe. Does being in a long distance relationship suck? Of course! But there are perks to having someone who works in cool places. You get to visit! Originally, we didn’t plan for me to come to Belgium but after being able to spend so much time together in the Summer, I missed him too much to stay away. So after two weeks, I packed a bag and was on my way to Brussels!
This was my first time in Europe so I was pretty excited. I had always wanted to go but with the fear of high costs in mind, I never got a chance to make it, until now! I spent a total of three weeks in Brussels, finding time to fit in Paris, Amsterdam, Bruges and Ghent as well. I won’t write you an essay on the three weeks but here are some high lights of each place.
BRUSSELS, BELGIUM : Known for Belgian waffles and chocolate, I had to have both of these while visiting Brussels. The chocolate is so delicious! And the temptation is everywhere! The waffles on the other hand, look really yummy but are super sweet and is better shared…unless you really just have a huge sweet tooth! While in Brussels, I did a lot of walking around the city center (outside the city center there isn’t much), visited a couple museums (Royal Museums of Fine Arts and Musical Instruments Museum), and spent a fair bit of time at the Cirque tent (which happened to be next to Atomium). My most favorite thing about Brussels was The Grand Palace. It was just so monumental and awesome just to stand in and look up. There was such detail in all the structures and a marvel to be surrounded by.
PARIS, FRANCE : Ah, Paris, the city of lovers. How appropriate Caoliang would take me here! I never dreamed I would be able to go to Paris so soon, but when Caoliang asked me if I wanted to go, of course I said, “Why not!” We only had a day and a night in Paris so it was very difficult to see many things. We walked to as much as we could though. We started our day with a quick train ride into the city, the morning checking out Sacré-Cœur Basilica – the church grounds, insides, and top dome, then strolling around the city seeing such sights as the neighborhood Montmartre, the outside of the famous Moulin Rouge, the magnificent Louvre, and of course the symbol of Paris, The Eiffel Tower. Some of my favorite moments of Paris were watching the lights twinkle on The Eiffel Tower, strolling through Jardin du Luxembourg, and being able to see such a historical and iconic city with my love, Caoliang.
AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS : This city actually surprised me. From it’s reputation of being a city just for stoners, I was reluctant to think anything more of it. Boy was I wrong. Amsterdam is one of the most beautiful cities I’ve seen! With canals everywhere, this city is truly something else. We decided to celebrate a year being together by taking a quick day trip to Amsterdam. Arriving by train, we saw heaps of people outside the train station. The weather was perfect and even though we only had a few hours, I was determined to see as much as we could. While in Amsterdam, we saw a couple museums (Sex Museum and Van Gogh Museum ), took a boat ride on a canal tour, walked by many coffee shops, and saw sights such as Bloemenmarkt (floating flower market) and Dam Square. Some of my favorite things in Amsterdam was the walking views and the relaxed vibe. Canals in every direction, beautiful parks, and heaps of people watching, Amsterdam really is a chill place.
BRUGES & GHENT, BELGIUM : These two cities I got to see on a day tour! With Caoliang at work so much of the time and me having the free time, I figured why not sign up for a day tour and get out into a different city or two while in Belgium! Luckily, my sweet friend Chloe was up to join me! We set out on a large tour bus that would be hitting up the two cities of Bruges and Ghent along the way. The two cities were much smaller than Brussels and had a different kind of charm. Bruges is also a canal city but much smaller than Amsterdam. There were cobble stone pathways and very medieval looking structures. Ghent was also very similar to Bruges with its canals and architectural structures. My favorite thing about these two cities is that I felt like I was transported back in time. It almost felt unreal how the buildings were. I said to Chloe at one point, “I feel like I’m in the medieval section of Disneyland or something. I just feel like Mickey and his friends will pop out around the corner at any minute!”
So this was my three weeks in Europe, part 1! I know it’s not my usual novel-long rant but I hope you guys could get a little feel for what this past September was like. Since then, it’s been back to Houston for me and off to Spain for Caoliang. Fortunately, we got to see each other for a few days this October as he came to Texas to visit me. We are super busy with wedding planning but looking forward to spending New Years together in a couple weeks. So look out for my adventure in Spain soon!
In the mean time, check out my EUROPE PT.1 compilation video of this trip!! Thanks for hanging out and catching up!!