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Heilige Bloed Basiliek

The blood of Christ, preserved for over 2,000 years, is the focal point of this 12th-century church, drawing reverent pilgrims from all over the world.

Heilige Bloed Basiliek, the Basilica of the Holy Blood, is one of a handful of places around the world claiming to have blood-soaked garments or vials of blood preserved from the life and death of Jesus Christ. Participate in a Friday mass to see the relic displayed before or after the service. 

Over 50,000 people from around the world make the pilgrimage to the basilica to observe the springtime Ascension Day celebration. The event includes a solemn procession with priests carrying the Relic of the Holy Blood in a jewel-encrusted golden shrine weighing more than 65 pounds (30 kilograms). Over 1,800 actors participate in the day’s events, including reenactment of the delivery of the relic to Bruges. In July every five years, players perform a Belgian passion play, Jeu du Saint Sang or Play of the Holy Blood.

Theories about the relic’s origin add to its mystery and reverance. One version says that Count Derrick of Flanders received the Relic of the Holy Blood after the second crusade in the mid-12th century from his brother-in-law, the King of Jerusalem. Derrick built a chapel in Bruges to preserve and display the relic, which was widely venerated by local and visiting Christians. Alternatively, the relic may have arrived in the mid-1200s after being taken from Constantinople. 

Inside the basilica museum you’ll find many objects related to the relic. Look for the gold and bejeweled shrine, carved oak medallions depicting Christ’s life, paintings of 32 members of the Noble Brotherhood of the Holy Blood and a tapestry showing the relics moving from Africa to Sardinia. 

Heilige Bloed Basiliek is very welcoming to tourists and worshippers. Attend the late morning mass held daily except winter Thursdays. If you are a priest or part of a choir group, make an advance request to participate in the service itself. The museum has a small fee. The basilica is at Burg square, 600 feet (200 meters) east of Grote Markt.


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Martin's Brugge ¥10,225
Martin's Brugge

Martin's Brugge

Oude Burg 5, Bruges
     
    3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in Historical Center Bruges, this hotel is steps from Bruges Belfry (Belfort), Holy Blood Basilica Chapel, and Brewery Bourgogne des Flandres. Bruges Town Hall (Stadhuis) and Historium are also within 5 minutes. Bruges Station is 17 minutes by foot and Bruges-Saint-Peters Station is 30 minutes.

    Academie Hotel ¥9,488
    Academie Hotel

    Academie Hotel

    Wijngaardstraat 7-9, Bruges
       
      4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in Historical Center Bruges, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Diamond Museum, Minnewater, and Church of Our Lady. Groeningemuseum and Bruges Belfry (Belfort) are also within 10 minutes. Bruges Station is 11 minutes by foot.

      Grand Hotel Casselbergh Bruges ¥13,479
      Grand Hotel Casselbergh Bruges

      Grand Hotel Casselbergh Bruges

      Hoogstraat 6, Bruges
         
        4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in Historical Center Bruges, this romantic hotel is steps from Palace of the Liberty of Bruges, Basilica of the Holy Blood (Heilig Bloed Basiliek), and Bruges Belfry (Belfort). Bruges Market Square (Grote Markt) and Groeningemuseum are also within 5 minutes. Bruges Station is 19 minutes by foot.

        Hotel Dukes' Palace Bruges ¥19,965
        Hotel Dukes' Palace Bruges

        Hotel Dukes' Palace Bruges

        Prinsenhof 8, Bruges
           
          5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in Historical Center Bruges, this luxury hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Chocolate Line, Bruges Market Square (Grote Markt), and Bruges Belfry (Belfort). Basilica of the Holy Blood (Heilig Bloed Basiliek) and Groeningemuseum are also within 10 minutes. Bruges Station is 17 minutes by foot and Bruges-Saint-Peters Station is 29 minutes.

          Hotel Bourgoensch Hof ¥8,886
          Hotel Bourgoensch Hof

          Hotel Bourgoensch Hof

          Wollestraat 39, Bruges
             
            3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in Historical Center Bruges, this hotel is steps from Holy Blood Basilica Chapel, Groeningemuseum, and Bruges Market Square (Grote Markt). Basilica of the Holy Blood (Heilig Bloed Basiliek) and Bruges Belfry (Belfort) are also within 5 minutes. Bruges Station is 17 minutes by foot.

            Novotel Brugge Centrum ¥10,244
            Novotel Brugge Centrum

            Novotel Brugge Centrum

            Katelijnestraat 65b, Bruges
               
              3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in Historical Center Bruges, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Diamond Museum, Church of Our Lady, and Minnewater. Groeningemuseum and Bruges Market Square (Grote Markt) are also within 15 minutes. Bruges Station is 12 minutes by foot.

              Hotel Navarra Brugge ¥14,116
              Hotel Navarra Brugge

              Hotel Navarra Brugge

              41 St Jakobsstraat, Bruges
                 
                4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in Historical Center Bruges, this romantic hotel is within a 5-minute walk of St. James's Church, Bruges Market Square (Grote Markt), and Bruges Belfry (Belfort). Basilica of the Holy Blood (Heilig Bloed Basiliek) and Groeningemuseum are also within 10 minutes. Bruges Station is 20 minutes by foot and Bruges-Saint-Peters Station is 24 minutes.

                NH Brugge Hotel ¥11,194
                NH Brugge Hotel

                NH Brugge Hotel

                Boeveriestraat 2, Bruges
                   
                  4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in Historical Center Bruges, this eco-friendly hotel is within a 10-minute walk of 't Zand Square, Church of Our Lady, and Bruges Market Square (Grote Markt). Bruges Belfry (Belfort) and Groeningemuseum are also within 15 minutes. Bruges Station is 10 minutes by foot.