As I already spoilt it for you in the previous travel blog, our next adventures took us to ANOTHER COUNTRY !!! I know that is probably not weird for those that live in Europe… it’s nothing for them to holiday to, or even just visit another country for the day… but for us in Qld, Australia… we could get in our car and drive north for 24hrs straight and still be in the same STATE, let alone country.
So, we were ever so slightly excited to head off on a road trip to BELGIUM, on this, our last day with our gorgeous hosts, Richard & San. Richard’s son was also with us for the trip, which was great !! He gave me the little bit of ‘kid element’ that I was missing, having been away from my kids for far too long.
The drive to Belgium from Nieuwegein is approx 2hr 45mins, mostly on freeways, but still some gorgeous scenery to take in on the journey. We were originally going to Brussels, but due to an annual event going on, all streets were closed off, making it basically impossible to get into the city.
So, our next option, and I suspect turned out better than any day in Brussels would’ve been, was the old city of Mechelen, in the province of Antwerp. We’d seen that province name before as it was one of the stops on the train from Paris to the NL. Mechelen was founded early in the 3rd century, if not earlier, so I’m sure you can imagine the history attached to this city.
There was a market stall event going on in the town square, which sadly took away from the photo opportunities ever so slightly, but it was still gorgeous.
For some randomly reason, I look photoshopped into that middle photo… Some have said it’s because I have no shadow.. but who knows. either way, it’s a cool photo.
We enjoyed a delicious.. and I can’t stress this enough… DELICIOUS.. lunch at a restaurant chosen by Richard & San that they’d been to before. Honestly, it’s hard to explain, but it was the atmosphere, combined with the company, as well as the food & drinks, that made this lunch so enjoyable. Or maybe it was because we knew it was our last day together.. who knows. Either way, it was a truly memorable day… possibly one of the best of the trip.
We did some exploring after lunch, went inside this great church, St. Rumbold’s Cathedral (yay, I did make it to church on a Sunday during the trip.. lol), where they had the most fascinating pulpit.. entirely carved out of this one tree… Sadly it was covered in dust… not sure why they let it get like that, but anyway.. it was really amazing work !!
The pure beauty of the buildings was a sight to behold, and I remember just looking around and being in awe of where I was at that moment. I was well and truly missing my DH and kiddos badly by this point, so there was lots of thoughts of ‘wish they were here’ etc.
Sadly, the day did need to come to an end, but not before we got some cute as photos near these floral displays in the shape of bells…. aren’t our hosts just the cutest !!!
We thoroughly enjoyed our entire stay with these two, so our last dinner together that night was a little bittersweet.
Getting up early the next morning and heading off was a little ( a lot) sad, but it was the beginning of our last adventure before heading home. I knew from back in the planning of the trip that this particular morning would be a real turning point, as it was the beginning of our journey home….. with a small (but BIG) experience on the way.
Onto that in the next blog…. because it WAY TOO BIG to attempt to include in this one.
See you soon peeps.