This satellite photo shows Northwest Europe. Visible are the Republic of Ireland (top leftmost), the United Kingdom (top left), France (middle left), Belgium (middle), the Netherlands (top middle), Germany (right), Denmark (top right), Luxembourg (between France, Germany, and Belgium), Switzerland (bottom middle), Italy (bottom middle), and Austria (bottom right); the latter three all cloud covered. Image courtesy of NASA.
Sightseeing boat on a Brugge canal. The name of Brugge, often called the Venice of the North, is believed to come from the Old Norse word Bryggia meaning 'mooring place.' The canals were important in getting trading goods to their destination. Today, they are used exclusively for tourist boats.
A bridge over a quiet Brugge canal.
Weather vanes, tall windows, and distinctive roof lines along a Brugge canal.
The Church of Our Lady in Brugge. Built between the 13th and 15th centuries, it contains both Romanesque and Gothic features; its spire stretches upward for 122 m (401 ft) and remains the tallest structure in the city. The interior contains many important works of art.
At the Snow and Ice Sculpture Festival in Brugge. The festival runs from the end of November until the middle of January and is located on Station Square.
Antwerp's City Hall (Stadhuis) stands on the western side of the Grote Markt (Great Market Square). Built between 1561 and 1565, it displays both Flemish and Italian architectural influences.
The Saint-Cyr House in Brussels was built between 1901-03 for painter Georges de Saint-Cyr; it is an Art Nouveau masterpiece.
The uppermost window of the Saint-Cyr House in Brussels
L'Orangerie (a greenhouse to grow oranges or other tropical fruit) at the Jardin Botanique (Botanical Gardens) just north of Brussels.
The Grand Place (Grand Square) or Grote Markt (Grand Market) is the central square of Brussels; it is bounded by opulent guildhalls and two major edifices, the Hotel de Ville/Stadhuis (City Hall) and the King's House or Breadhouse building that houses the Brussels City Museum. Measuring 68 by 110 m (223 by 361 ft), the Grand Place is the most important tourist destination and most memorable landmark in Brussels. Considered to be one of the most beautiful squares in Europe, it has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1998.
The Hotel de Ville/Stadhuis (City Hall) with Winter Festival lighting.
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