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A vision of Minnewater Park and Lake. On the left hand side you see one of the buildings of Beguinage, background is the spire of Church of Our Lady.

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Minnewater park is right next to the Beguinage of Bruges. It is dominated by its tree-fringed ‘Lake of Love’ and the Kasteel Minnewater, a chateau-style restaurant with a scenic waterside terrace. It is also a lush green space ideal for a picnic away from the crowds.

The origin of the lakes’s common name – the ‘Lake of Love’ – is the source of much debate. French novelist and poet Victor Hugo visited Bruges in 1837 and allegedly christened it the Lac d’Amour. It is said he was inspired by the word minne, medieval Dutch for ‘love’. But local legend has it that the minne was in fact a watery ghost: that of Saxon maiden Minna, who fled the home of her father rather than marry the suitor of his choice. When her lover returned from fighting the Romans, he found her dead of cold and hunger by a stream in the woods. He built a dyke, buried her in the ground, then released the water to create a lake over her resting place.

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Additional Photos by Deniz Taskin (rigoletto) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3085 W: 400 N: 6725] (34279)
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