• A Beginners Guide To Ghent

    This is my beginners guide to Ghent and everything you’ll need to know. Ghent is a lovely port city in northwest Belgium, at the confluence of the Leie and Scheldt rivers. During the Middle Ages it was a prominent city-state. Today it’s a university town and cultural hub. The pedestrianised center is famous for it’s medieval architecture such as 12th-century Gravensteen castle. You can either spell it Ghent (Belgian) or Gent (Dutch) – although it doesn’t matter which was you spell it.

    beginners guide to ghent
    beginners guide to ghent

    WHAT TO EXPECT IN GHENT

    Ghent is a gorgeous port city filled with lots of shops, cafes and restaurants for you to browse and relax. It’s a very busy and happening city so it’s perfect if you are looking for some atmosphere and nightlife. There are plenty of cafes and restaurants around the main square for somewhere to eat or drink. And their performing arts centre is amazing for live performances. The city is mainly focused around the canal so if you fancy catching a boat trip or hiring some kayaks up the canal it’s the perfect way to spend a day in the sunshine.

    Check out my guide to Antwerp here.

    HOW TO GET TO GHENT 

    The best way of getting to Ghent is by train. We caught the train to Ghent from Brussels Midi Station. The journey takes about 40 minutes. You can find out how much the train costs to Ghent in my post How To Get Around In Belgium. The train ticket cost around €9.00 (£7.90) via the ticket booth or £10.15 via the Trainline App but prices may vary since I was there. It is quite a walk from the train station to the central market, if you don’t fancy the walk you can always catch the tram into the centre for a small cost. Make sure you check how much the tram costs and it’s pick up points before you visit.

    beginners guide to ghent
    beginners guide to ghent

    NAVIGATE YOUR WAY AROUND GHENT…

    THINGS TO DO IN GHENT 

    • Eat some delicious pizza at Otomat
    • Visit Gravesteen Castle
    • Do some shopping down their streets
    • Relax by the riverfront with a cold drink or ice cream
    • Check out their marzipan and chocolate shops

    beginners guide to ghent

    HIGHLIGHTS FROM GHENT

    VISIT GRAVESTEEN CASTLE

    Gravesteen Castle is a gorgeous medieval castle in the middle of Ghent surrounded by the river and moat. The current castle dates to 1180 and was the residence of the Counts of Flanders until 1353. It was subsequently re-purposed as a court, prison, mint (coin factory), and even as a cotton factory.

    EAT SOME DELICIOUS PIZZA AT OTOMAT

    Me and Amy stopped at Otomat for lunch which is an adorable pizza cafe that do pizzas and salads, perfect for a sit down lunch. Outside is a small outdoor eating area with benches and high chairs with fairy lights hanging above. The pizza was the perfect thickness and it filled you up just right with a side salad which is part of their lunch time deal.

    RELAX BY THE RIVERFRONT

    Relaxing by the riverfront on a hot sunny day with a cold drink or ice cream is the perfect way to chill and watch the world go by.


    Are you planning a trip to Ghent soon? Let me know in the comments below.

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