Though in Ukraine I had studied foreign languages, history and art were always my two great passions. Flanders is one of the best places in the world to satisfy your thirst for everything beautiful so I went to school (again!) just to study the history of Belgium and Flanders in particular, without thinking that it may lead to something quite different than simply studying history books. And just like that, during the practical exam, I have understood that I quite like telling people of the places we see but that was not quite enough. I went back to school to study the history of art and one of the most important things for me, life and work of our greatest painter of all times, Peter Paul Rubens.
After graduation, I have started working as a guide, giving tours in English and Russian (my mother tongue) and I continue doing it still today.
The capital of Baroque - Antwerp, Gent - the source of Flemish youth and vitality, Bruges - our trip to the Middle Ages and majestic Brussels: all these cities are within reach to everybody who comes to our rather small, but charming country. And I love showing them all to our guests. But I do try not just to shower them with historical facts and events: food, funny stories, city legends and, of course, Belgian beer - I try to tell and show them all (fluent Dutch helps of course). And we must not forget shopping; it is not for nothing Antwerp is called the fashion capital of the north. I know just the places to go to!
In short, I love Belgium, I love Flanders and love sharing it with my guests.
A Recent Review of this guide
Irina was a wonderful tour guide. She was knowledgeable about both Bruges and Ghent and provided us with a great overview and detailed history. We saw parts of the town that we never would have seen. I highly recommend her.
CVO - Antwerp school for city and museum guides
I prefer not to drive myself and use either public transportation (e.g. trains) or arrange for a car and a driver (e.g.taxi).