Sunday in Brussels? Do some antique hunting!

There are many flea markets in Brussels, but one of my favorites is the one on Place du Jeu de Balle, located very close from the Palais de Justice. It is open all year round, but it feels like a especially good option to me going there on a sunny Sunday morning as the atmosphere, a mixture of tourists and locals, is especially nice.

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The first impression may be that everything here is a big mess, and certainly it is, but that is part of the charm, and actually each seller has a good control over its items. Here you can find all kinds of antiques and art objects, furniture, clothes, books, pictures, and mainly anything you can imagine; so who knows, maybe you will find the object you’ve spent years looking for!

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The best of all is the charm of the square itself, surrounded by bars where you can get a drink or eat something after the arduous search! My recommendation is to try the delicious hot dog from “Chez Charlotte”, a deli where also several types of sandwiches and snacks are sold. For around 5 euros you will get a generous hot dog, stuffed with fried onion, sauerkraut or apple compote at your choice! Simply irresistible! You will recognize it easily by the long line that people forms in the door.

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The market opening hours are 6am to 2pm on weekdays and from 6am to 3pm on weekends.

So DO NOT GO THERE if you are a tidiness freak!

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Posted by Nacho

“Tapas” of Granada

Probably you heard already about the famous Spanish “tapas”, but what do you really know about them?

Of course you can taste them all around Spain, but there is one city where you will find the “mecca of tapeo”, and this place is Granada. There you will get a free tapa in almost every single bar of the city when ordering your drink, and believe me when I tell you that in some of them they are really big! So much, that probably with two tapas you should be already full!

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There are many theories about the origin of tapas, but the most consistent of all, is the one which says that the idea appeared in the Middle Ages, when some publicans began to “tapar” (to cover) their customers drinks with a slice of bread, in order to keep away insects and dust. Personally this is the theory that I like the most!

You can find tapas bars of all kinds, traditional, oriental, design, Asian, vegetarian, etc., so as you can imagine the variety is wide! You will need several days to be able to try a little bit of each!

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Is also important to know that there are usually two types of bars, those in which there is a predefined order of tapas and therefore you will be surprised with every round you ask for, and others in which there is a menu with all the tapas available, so you can choose the one that you prefer. If you are a group, usually you will be allowed to request up to two or three different types for each order.

To finish I am going to write a small list with some of my favorites tapas bars, they are all easily accessible and well known to the inhabitants of the city. Also is important to mention that Granada is a beautiful city, well worth a visit!

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– La Antigualla – Calle Elvira

– La Riviera –  Calle Cetti Meriém, 7

– Bodegas La Bella y La Bestia – http://www.bodegaslabellaylabestia.com

– Brasilia Café Bar – Calle Dr. Mesa Moles, 2

– Café Bar Oriental Feng Shui – Calle Hermosa, 7

So if you don´t want to eat and drink good for a ridiculous price, then DO NOT GO TO Granada!

Posted by Nacho

La ruta del agua (The water route)

Do you like to hike in the nature? If the answer is yes, this post is definitely for you!

Today we are recommending a natural trail called “La ruta del agua” (The water route); you will find it next to Chelva, a town located around 70 km from Valencia (Spain). It is a route that combines culture, nature and gastronomy, so what else could you ask for?

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The way starts at the center of the village, in the “Plaza Mayor” (Main square), then runs through the four historic districts of the city and later will take you through the Chelva River and its spectacular natural environment.

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There are signs that will guide you all the way (around 4,5 km), so it’s hard to miss it. Besides the natural beauty of the route, you will pass also through some points of interest, like a long tunnel dug in the mountain (without any light) or an old and abandoned light factory.

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To finish the journey the best is to return to the “Plaza Mayor” area and eat at one of its restaurants. The best is to ask for the “Menú del día” (Daily menu), where for a small price you will get two courses, dessert and drink! And indeed the area is famous for its “embutidos” (something like sausages), so do not hesitate to order them! After all it was a long walk and you deserve the feast!

So DO NOT GO THERE if you don´t like natural beauty and gastronomic delights!

Posted by Nacho

Belgian traditional food.

What is your national dish? I guess you have few in your country, don’t you?

Did you know that in Belgium are… chips? Before coming here I didn’t like them too much, but now I have to say that they are great! So crunchy and so tasty! And what is more, there are so many sauces to try together with your chips! Which one is my recommendation? If you like spicy food try Andalusian one and if you prefer something that will burn less in your mouth, then order Brazilian or Curry sauce.

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Apparently the most famous chips in Brussels with 27 sauces to choose!!! http://www.maisonantoine.be/ Check it out!

What is more, don’t be afraid to take your favorite chips to the bar! There are some special bars, usually close to the place where you can buy chips that have signs which allows you to order your beer and enjoy your chips while being inside! Isn’t it amazing?

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“Frites” are more than welcome here.

So, DO NOT GO TO BELGIUM if you don’t want to be addicted to chips! 😀

What is the strangest thing that you eat in your life?

I think for me will be grasshopper and larva of one bug (I’ve no idea which one). First one is really crunchy and taste like crisps second one ehh something between over cooked chicken and something really spongy.

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But what about other strange meal?  Let’s have a look. 🙂

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Goats heads and bull’s kernel? Any problem just go to Marroco.

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Blood soup served in Poland for men during proposal, just to say NO!?!(Yes I tried it and it is delicious!!!!)

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Fried spiders from Cambodia? (No, that one I didn’t try)

picture from page http://www.trekearth.com/gallery/Asia/Cambodia/West/Phnum_Penh/Phnom_Penh/photo759003.htm

So do not go to those countries if you are afraid of trying weird meals. Enjoy your lunch!