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Things to Do in Bruges in July

Updated: January 27, 2024

In this post, you’ll find all the best events and things to see and do in Bruges this July. We have a Top 10 list of things to do that is updated for 2024. 



Below are our favorite 10 events and activities to do this July. 

Don’t forget to take a look at our Bruges walking tours post

1) Take a Bike Tour Through the Countryside

The landscape around Bruges is beautiful, and July is the perfect time to explore it! Take this 3.5-hour bicycle tour through the countryside from Bruges to the village of Damme. 

Your guide will handle all of the navigation and have plenty of stories and historical facts to share as you ride. 

Once you’re in Damme, there will be time for some rest and a drink at a cafe before turning back.

The tour runs on Sundays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays. 

Find tickets here

2) Enjoy a Concert

If you’re looking for a big-name artist in concert, this July you’ll need to make the 20-minute train trip to nearby Gent. 

You can also head to the public inner courtyard of the Belfry for a free concert. The tower homes over 40 bells that are connected to a keyboard and make a carillon instrument. You'll hear everything from classical compositions to Queen's Bohemian Rhapsody.  

The carillon concerts last one hour and start on Wednesdays, Saturdays, and Sundays at 11:00 am and Mondays and Wednesdays at 21:00 (9:00 pm).

3) Enjoy the Fish Market

The Fish Market, or Vismarkt, hosts several different community events throughout the summer. On Fridays in July and August, you can find live music to accompany your fresh meal and beverages from 16:00 (4:00 pm) - 22:00 (10:00 pm). 

If you enjoy dancing, you should check out the Fish Market on Thursdays, Saturdays, or Sundays from 18:00 (6:00 pm) - 22:00 (10:00 pm). 

Feel free to jump out onto the dance floor or just enjoy your dinner watching the community dancers.

  • Thursdays: Folk Dancing
  • Saturdays: Salsa Dancing
  • Sundays: Tango Dancing

The Vismarkt is always free to enter. You’ll want to bring cash to purchase a delicious, fresh seafood dinner and drinks, however. 

4) Bruges Zandfeesten Antiques Market

The Zandfeesten market is the largest antiques market in the region - it covers 5 km of space! - and operates three times per year. 

If you want to find some great deals, you'll need to arrive early each day, since the event attracts thousands of shoppers - especially collectors of vintage items and antiques - each year. You'll find antiques, of course, as well as handmade goods, pastries, snacks, and drinks.

Market Dates:

  • June 2, 2024
  • July 7, 2024
  • August 4, 2024
  • September 22, 2024

The market will be open every day from 6:00 am - 18:00 (6:00 pm).

You can find more information here.

5) Celebrate the Day of the Flemish Community (Feestdag van Vlaanderen)

Celebrate the Flemish national day on July 10 - 11, 2024. The day itself is on the 11th, but some festivities start the evening before.

Flanders covers the northern Flemish Region of Belgium. On July 11, 1302, the Flemish people stopped a French attempt at annexation during the Battle of the Golden Spurs.

Today, the Flemish community in Belgium celebrate every July!

There will be a free, open-air concert on the Burg square, just east of Brugge Markt. It will start on July 10, 2024, at 20:45 (8:45 pm). 

Tourist activities like canal rides and other tours won't be affected, but expect to see larger than normal crowds throughout the day on July 11, including street performers and organized walks through the streets.

You should also expect to see a lot of the Flemish flag - yellow with a lion - and hear the anthem being played this week.

6) Cactus Music Festival

This international music festival brings in artists from all over the world every year. You’ll hear jazz, rock, rap, reggae, and other genres. 

The great thing about the Cactus Music Festival is that the organizers mix well-known, beloved performers with talented newcomers to the music scene, so you'll walk away with a few new bands to obsess over as well as loving the headliners.

The festival is limited to 25,000 attendees, which means it's a major event but you won't be crushed by the throngs of other festival-goers.

The outdoor Minnewater Park hosts the event with one main stage. 

7) Cruise the Waterways

Called the Venice of the north, Bruges is full of beautiful canals. Seeing the water-facing facades of the old buildings is a great way to further explore the city.

You’ll have an entirely new vantage point of the gothic architecture. 

This guided photo walk will end with a 30-minute cruise down Bruges's waterways. You'll come away from this tour with fantastic pictures, thanks to your guide's advice.

Or you can join the queue for a cruise at most of the city's docks with various companies, such as Stael nV or Boottochten Brugge. Tickets are generally €10 per 30-minute trip.

8) Take a Walking Tour

Bruges is a beautifully compact city, which makes it easy to see all the important landmarks during a walking tour. 

Good news for travelers looking for budget-friendly activities - there are multiple pay-what-you-like tours! These tours don’t have any required fees. You can decide what the experience was worth at the end, though we suggest €10 per adult.

You’ll see beautiful canals, a cathedral, Market Square, St. John’s Hospital, the Belfry Tower, and more.

9) Gent Jazz Festival

This international jazz festival descends on Gent - just a 20-minute train ride from Bruges - every year for two weekends in mid-July.

The line-up includes some well-known international musicians and bands. Headliners include Marc Cohn and The Blind Boys of Alabama, Van Morrison, Kate Tempest, and Nils Frahm.

10) Waffles & Beer Workshop

Who doesn't love Belgian waffles? The country is famous for this deliciously textured treat, so where better to learn how to make your own than in Bruges?

The workshop will show you which ingredients you'll need to make your own signature Belgian waffles from scratch, as well as how to prep, and the techniques for perfecting the waffles.

You'll also have time to eat what you've made and sample some Belgian beer at the same time.

Find tickets here

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About The Author

Stephen Pickhardt

Stephen is the CEO of Free Tours by Foot and has overseen the transformation of a local walking tour company into a global tour community and traveler’s advice platform. He has personally led thousands of group tours in the US and Europe, and is an expert in trip planning and sightseeing, with a focus on budget travelers. Stephen has been published and featured in dozens of publications including The Wall Street Journal, BBC, Yahoo,, and more.
Updated: January 27th, 2024
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