One of the great things about London is that the museums are free to the public (althought you do have to pay to enter any special exhibitions). We had a few hours to kill before our train, so we headed to The National Gallery, “the story of European art, masterpiece by masterpiece”.
Koen and I love visiting the Victoria and Albert Museum. The permanent collection is free to explore and there are always very interesting exhibits throughout the year that you can pay to explore. To be honest, we originally went to the V&A to visit Frida Kahlo: Making Her Self Up, but it was sold out for three straight weeks! Fashioned by from Nature seemed interesting to me because I studied textiles and work in fashion. Luckily Koen was interested as well, so we decided to buy tickets for this exhibit instead. l.ucky us! If you’re in London any time between now and January 27th, 2019, I recommend you check it out!
Koen and I have been to London many times, so it was exciting to hear that Nicole and Adam booked us a Hidden City Hunt! Another way to explore the city, solving riddles and stopping in pubs! We weren’t sure what to expect – but we had beautiful weather, great company, and a lot of fun!
Every since I studied in France in 2008, Mont Saint Michel has been on my mother’s and my wishlist to visit. Even though I’ve seen many photos, Mont Saint Michel still took my breath away when I saw it in person.
Because Versailles is closed on Mondays and I already booked the French Open for Tuesday, we needed to find something to do inbetween. We’re lucky enough to have all been to Paris before, so I did some research for possible day trips and found out that Giverny is not too far away (1 hour).
Giverny is a beautiful town in Normandy most famous for being home to the impressionist painter Claude Monet. I was so excited about seeing the water lilies and green bridge in person! May was such a perfect month to visit because all of the flowers were in blossom. I cannot recommend enough!
I don’t get to see my parents so often – only once or twice a year, so when they planned their trip to Belgium in May, Koen and I wanted to take them on a special trip to France. Specifically the highlight is the French Open in Paris! But first things first, the Château de Versailles. Everyone in my family has visited Versailles with the exception of my mother, so of course we set out to change this!
Museum Plantin-Moretus is one of my favorites in Antwerp. I always recommend to visitors that if they only have time for one museum to go here. You get a little bit of everything when it comes to Antwerp’s history. The museum is the former house and printing press of the family Plantin and Moretus. By walking through the building you’re able to see their relationship with Peter Paul Rubens and art-loving mayor Nicolaas Rockox, as well as discover how they lived and worked in the 17th century.
Nicole and Adam were in Antwerp for Easter weekend. So for Easter day we prepared a delicious brunch with fresh fruit, fresh baked bread and pastries, and poached eggs with Hollandaise. Yum! We needed the energy for our walk through Antwerp in the afternoon.
I visited Dinant with my parents back in 2014, but Koen had never been. We had a bit of sunshine, so I convinced Koen to take the trek down south. Dinant is most famously known as being the home of Adolphe Sax, who invented the saxophone, and the Battle of Dinant in 1914, where Lieutenant Charles de Gaulle was wounded. The landmarks are the Citadel of Dinant and the Collegiate Church of Notre Dame. Important to Koen and me is of course the regional cuisine – the couques de Dinant, Europe’s hardest cookie, the flamiche, a type of quiche, and Leffe beer which comes from the Leffe Abbey. A lot to see and take in!