1. Relaxing in Citadel Park
2. Enjoying the works of the great Flemish Masters at the Museum of Fine Arts
3. Lunch at the Het Groot Vleeshuis for a taste of Ghent specialties
4. Climbing to the top of St. Bavo’s or the Gravensteen for amazing views of the city
5. Walking down the eclectic Graffiti Avenue
6. Walk back in time in the Patershol neighborhood
7. Tasting a flight of Gruut beers, brewed locally in Ghent
8. Admiring the many public squares of the city, most of which used to be execution sites
9. Walking around town and soaking up the atmosphere of a great university town
10. Admiring the amazing work of art van Eyck’s Adoration of the Mystic Lamb
11. Taking part in the massive Ghent music festival
12. Enjoying chocolate at the third-generation Van Hecke’s
13. Taking advantage of the many day trips easy to take from Ghent
14. Eating dinner at a canal-side restaurant
15. Ultra spicy Tierenteyn-Verlent mustard
16. Getting around town using the fantastic tram system
17. Discovering forgotten corners of the city hiding their own unique surprises
18. Learning about Ghent through the ages at the ultra-modern city museum, the STAM
19. Catching your breath with a coffee at Mokabon
20. Admiring the famous view of Ghent’s towers
21. Enjoy a meal overlooking St Baafskathedraal, at De Foyer
22. The strange but wonderful new city hall in Ghent
23. Cruising down the canals for a unique view of the city
24. Soaking up the history and tradition at St. Bavo’s Cathedral
25. Sampling the unusual chocolates at YUZU chocolatier
26. Finish your evening at the popular bar ‘t Velootje
27. Shopping along the Veldstraat
28. Staying at the perfectly located Ghent Marriott
29. Biking around town to see it like the locals do
30. Delicious sandwich made with Ganda Ham
31. Enjoying the grounds of the feudal Laarne Castle
32. Architecture and design aficionados will love visiting the Royal Dutch Theater
33. Enjoying the best waffles in town courtesy of the Max at Goudenleeuwplein
34. Walking across the picturesque St. Michael’s Bridge
35. Going upscale at the posh Sunday flower market
36. Going back in time at the Gravensteen Castle
37. People watching with a great Belgian beer
38. Hire a guide to get the best look at the history and culture of Ghent
39. An after dinner jenever shot
40. Did I mention the chocolate?
41. Marveling at the innovation on display at the Design Museum
42. Going on a food walking tour of the city for insider’s tips on the best places to eat
20 thoughts on “42 Things I Love About Ghent”
Ghent looks beautiful! I’m currently soaking up as many posts as I can find about Belgium since I’m headed there in two weeks. We’re staying in Bruges and Brussels, but I think it would be a convenient day trip to see Ghent. Either that or I’ll just have to go back!
Being a Ghent local, I can recommend the city to the fullest! Bruges (Brugge) is beautiful, but kinda dead, like an open air museum. Brussel is… Well, nice, but too much the capital.
Ghent is neither: it’s a vibrant student city, which lives at any moment of the day. Not too big, not too small, with very beautiful scenery, but also an array of adorable restaurants and coffee houses.
I wish you a great stay!
Wow what a great looking town! Will definitely check it out now.
Wow, so colorful and the chocolate looks delicious! You’ve sold me on Ghent! :)
The street art and building coloring is spectacular. Would be a great place to wander.
It definitely is, the city has allowed graffiti on one street so that the rest of the city won’t get tagged and it’s worked.
There’s a second place where you can legally paint graffiti: Keizerviaduct. But it’s not in the centre of the city (although 2 km is not that far).
Local here as well, I’d just want to point out that I quite strongly disagree with no.16. A tram system which stops running at around 11pm isn’t what I’d call fantastic, especially not for a city this size. During the day time it’s very useful though, if a bit overcrowded on line 1.
Should’ve said day time then
You didn’t mention that inhabitants suffer from a strange mixture of pride and modest skepticism about their city..
LOL, that’s something I’ve begun to notice
Or, 42 ways to act like a tourist.
Yup, I don’t live there so I’m necessarily a tourist. As are you whenever you leave home.
Too bad I’m not going to the EYP conference in Ghent :'( fml because Ghent looks like the place to be!
One day I’d like to move there…
Hi Mat. We are from Ghent and the ‘owners’* of the Graffiti Avenue you’ve put on number 5. Thanks you so much for mentioning ‘us’*.
* we just group artists, fans and tourists on FB so that the art pieces are kept for….well eternity.
I am utterly in love with this city!
I have been studying here for 4 years and I think I’ll never leave.
All the things you mentioned in this list are so much fun to do.
The next time you’re going you should try some of these student pubs and some of my all time favourites:
Hotclub de gand – live jazz every wednesday
the backdoor – every beer you can imagine, they sell it
de trollenkelder – same as the backdoor but in a different part of the city
de geus van gent – really cozy, jazzy kinda pub
het spijker – near het gravensteen and has this rustic feel about it
and sooooo many more! I hope you get a chance to visit some of these.
Just wanted to know where your first and third photo of the Ghent canal scenes on this blog were taken. We are going to Bruges for 2 days and would like to go to Ghent for part of one day. I would like to check those areas out. Your mention of the train station area sounds grim so we would like to know where to go to get some good city scene photos. Were you on a canal boat tour? If so, where would you get on it?
What were some of your favorite day trips that you referred to in #13? We’re leaning towards using Ghent as our base for 3 or 4 days. Probably go to Blanche Nuit in Brussels on Oct. 4th. Will do at least a day trip to Bruges, but also looking for other fun options – food, beer, and outdoor activities are always preferred. Thanks for the great info, and thank you in advance for any other assistance that you can provide! Great blog!
Sure well Bruges, Brussels, Antwerp and even Amsterdam are all easy day trips.
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