Europe with a Toddler, Part 2: Brussels, Belgium
This part of our travels consisted of staying at our dear friends' house in Tuddern, Germany for a few days. Tuddern is a small town near the Dutch border of Germany, so we got to visit several Dutch villages and sites that were so perfectly quaint and inviting compared to some of the bigger cities and tourist traps of Europe.
First up, this is the sort of architecture and pastoral land found in Tuddern - the village where our friends live...
Yes, I fell in love with that house. Did you have any idea that there were parts of Germany that looked like this??
This was the "relaxing" part of our trip and it was much needed by this point in our travels. There was lots of time to kick back and enjoy tea parties (for the kids and adults alike).
For the kids:
For the adults:
The first town we visited was Maastricht, Netherlands. We just went for a few hours one evening to eat dinner and have some gelato.
After a stroll we had dinner in the main square. We must be in the Netherlands...bikes bikes everywhere!
We looked for Rapunzel in the tower below, but to no avail unfortunately. She was out of town for business, I think...
Maastricht was a darling city that I would have loved to spend more time in. Perhaps one day we'll return!
The next place we visited was right down the road from Tuddern, Germany...a five minute drive and we were in Sittard, Netherlands. We visited on the day of the weekly market, so we got some great street food. Fried fish and Filipino lumpia to be exact. Quite the delicious combo, I must say!
Why can't we have more markets in the states? They had the most beautiful tulips, fruits, vegetables, breads, and fabrics.
They also had great boutique shops where I found my favorite Europe souvenir - a Noosa Amsterdam bracelet. I'm shocked I haven't seen them in the states because I'm certain they'd be a hit. I bought a gray leather double strap bracelet with interchangeable snaps, or "chunks" as they call them.
I selected a few "chunks" to snap in for when I'm feeling colorful:
And, a few "chunks" for when I'm wearing more neutral colors:
Mix and match, I wear it almost every day.
The next day we visited Kasteel Hoensbroek or "Hoensbroek Castle" in the town of Hoensbroek, Netherlands.
Portions of the castle - such as the tower in the far right corner - were constructed as early as the 13th century.
The castle even had a real moat with lily pads and a drawbridge entrance! How cool is that??
We had to try out the reproduction stocks...we determined it was great for tickling kids.
My pretty princess in the ballroom...
The Kasteel Hoensbroek family's coat of arms:
A castle tour is not complete without a night in shining armor, of course...
The inner courtyard was my favorite part with the red shutters and the stone/brickwork.
That's all we have photo-wise for this part of the trip. You can see we took a bit of break in photography at this point in our travels. However, the picture taking was ramped up for the next destination that I'll share with you in a post next week - Amsterdam!