We left to Belgium on the earliest Eurostar on Saturday morning. We planned to do this as we thought if we woke up at 4.30 and fed the baby she would go to sleep and happily sleep until 7am when the train would already be departed. Everything went perfectly as planned -which is unusual with babies- and our little baby girl slept even thorough the whole security check which was amazing! We knew she would be cheerful all day if she just got the sleeping right.
We changed trains in Brussels as we were heading to a small town called Mechelen. It was a beautiful Belgian town with small chocolate shops and boutiques. We stayed in an apartment hotel Vixx right in the centre of the town. Our apartment was huge, modern and really chic! If you go to Mechelen this apartment hotel is definitely a place to stay! Instead of going down to the buffet in the morning they brought all the breakfast to your apartment for request. This was of course perfect (and easiest) for us as we had a crawling little baby to look after so it was so much more relaxing to have our breakfast in the room.
In Mechelen we caught up with my dear Aussie husband’s friends from Brisbane. We went for a few beers in the town. As they had two kids their own our timetable was very child friendly and accommodating. I have noticed that it is so easy to go out with couples with kids these days as I don’t feel guilty all the time for doing things according to our baby’s daily routines . All the people with kids understand that routines are just worth keeping to keep your baby happy! The great spot we went to was the Carolus brewery. This bar/restaurant served only the beers that were locally brewed. Have I mentioned many times enough that I am the biggest fan of Belgian beers, Trappist monastery brewed beers to be exact. I am not a lager kind of girl but dark Belgian beers (doubles and triples) just have something I so adore. Later on after we got our baby girl to sleep our friends came over to our apartment. We ended up having a big night, chatting and tasting Belgian Trappist beers until 1am! It was great fun but we felt exhausted on the following day 🙂
Despite our exhaustion we headed to Antwerp on the following day. It was such a gorgeous city! I will definitely return there.
We had our lunch in a fantastic restaurant. I can warmly recommend it to you all. It was called Applemans and was just in the centre of Antwerp’s old town. I had a superb goat cheese salad and my dear Aussie husband had tasty seafood croquettes. So good! I totally forgot to photograph my dish which is a shame as everything was so well presented and flavoursome!
On the way home on Monday we stopped in Brussels. I don’t want to sound mean but I didn’t really like it. It was over priced and quite ugly despite the old centre. I much rather go to Bruges, Mechelen or Antwerp for example.
The food was excellent in the place we ate. It was a restaurant called Leon de Bruxelles. We ate curry mussels and fries -the classic! Still I have to say that you get much better value for your money in smaller towns in Belgium.
The train journey home went so well that we were both really impressed how well our baby girl did even though it was a bit after her usual sleeping time. We were sneaky and circulated the toys and books and she was totally happy for those two hours that it took us to get back to London. We parents were munching wasabi crisps and Belgian chocolate. You should try wasabi crisps if you haven’t already, they are excellent! You can buy them in Switzerland and Belgium at least, I haven’t seen them in the UK unfortunately.
We had a fantastic and relaxing trip. Our baby behaved well most of the time and we managed to get some parents’ time too! It is, however, lovely to be back home. We had chosen our weekend getaway well as it was the crazy St Jude storm in the UK whilst we were eating mussels and enjoying warm weather in Belgium. Our house was still on its place with the roof and walls 🙂
This is what it looked like this morning when I had a walk in the park. The storm did cause some damage even here in North London.