The gorgeous center of Bruges is compact and filled with cobbled pedestrians-only streets, which makes walking the best way to get around. Just don’t go out for a day’s sightseeing wearing kitten heels; those charming cobblestones can be really hard on your feet.
Most city and regional buses are operated by De Lijn (tel 070/22-02-00; www.delijn.be/en) and depart from the bus station next to the train station on Stationsplein, or from a secondary station at ‘t Zand near the Concertgebouw , and many buses stop at the Markt in the Old Town. Purchase your ticket from a De Lijn sales point or automatic ticket machine before boarding and you’ll pay less than buying tickets on the bus. You can purchase your single ticket (3€, valid for one hour) from the De Lijn sales point in the station, from an automated ticket machine before boarding, or on the bus; the largest bill you can pay with onboard is a 10€ note.
Cycling is a terrific way to get around Bruges. Unlike most Belgian cities, it has made cyclists privileged road users so they can travel in both directions on some—but not all—of the narrow, one-way streets in the center city. Others are one-way only and you’ll be fined if you’re caught riding against the traffic flow so keep a close eye on the street signs. Ride with caution, because the streets are filled with throngs of tourists likely to step out in front of you at any minute, but apart from that, the streets are gloriously traffic free and safe for families with older children to navigate by bicycle.
There are eight bike-rental points in the city, from Fietspunt Station on Stationsplein (tel 050/396-826) to B-Bike Concertgebouw (tel 0479/971-280) near the tourist office on ‘t Zand. Prices start at around 4€ per hour, or 12€ for a full day. There’s a discount with the Brugge City Card at some rental outfits. If you don’t fancy pedaling, hire an electric bike from Electric Scooters (Gentpoortstraat 62, tel 050/000-000; www.electric-scooters.be) costing 30€ for 8 hours.
Don’t drive. There’s no point. Leave your car in your hotel parking garage; one of six underground parking garages in the center (expect to pay 9€ per day); one of four cheap park-and-ride lots next to the train station, which charge around 3.50€ per day; or a free parking zone outside the city center. It’s a short walk into the heart of the Old Town from any of the parking lots. Parking rules are firmly enforced, and unlawfully parked cars will be ticketed, booted, or towed.
There are taxi stands at the Markt (tel 050/334-444) and outside the rail station on Stationsplein (tel 050/384-660).
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.