Greetings, fellow travelers! Journeying Jack here, back with another exciting edition of Suitcase Stories. Today, we’re diving into the enchanting world of Ghent, a hidden gem nestled in the heart of Belgium. If you’re looking for a destination that’s brimming with history, culture, and charm, then look no further. In this blog post, I’ll be sharing my top picks for things to do Ghent, ensuring that your visit to this magical city is nothing short of unforgettable.
From its picturesque medieval architecture to its vibrant culinary scene, Ghent has something for everyone. As we explore the many things to do Ghent, you’ll quickly discover that this city is a treasure trove of experiences just waiting to be uncovered. So, without further ado, let’s embark on our journey through the winding cobblestone streets of Ghent and uncover the best things to do Ghent that this captivating city has to offer.
Exploring Ghent’s Historic City Center
Ghent’s historic city center is a must-visit destination for anyone looking for things to do in Ghent. The city center is home to a wealth of historic landmarks, beautiful architecture, and cultural attractions that are sure to keep you entertained for days.
Visit the Gravensteen Castle
One of the most iconic landmarks in Ghent is the Gravensteen Castle. This medieval castle dates back to the 12th century and is a must-visit attraction for anyone interested in history. You can explore the castle’s many rooms and learn about its fascinating history.
Stroll Through the Korenmarkt
The Korenmarkt is a bustling square in the heart of Ghent’s city center. It’s a great place to grab a coffee or a bite to eat and watch the world go by. The square is surrounded by beautiful historic buildings and is a popular spot for locals and tourists alike.
Admire the Architecture of St. Bavo’s Cathedral
St. Bavo’s Cathedral is one of the most impressive buildings in Ghent’s city center. The cathedral dates back to the 14th century and is home to a number of stunning works of art, including the famous Ghent Altarpiece. The cathedral’s Gothic architecture is also a sight to behold.
Take a Boat Tour of the Canals
One of the best ways to see Ghent’s city center is by taking a boat tour of the canals. You’ll get a unique perspective on the city’s historic buildings and landmarks, and you’ll learn about Ghent’s fascinating history along the way.
Visit the Belfry
The Belfry is another iconic landmark in Ghent’s city center. This medieval tower dates back to the 14th century and offers stunning views of the city from the top. It’s a bit of a climb to the top, but the views are well worth it.
Whether you’re interested in history, architecture, or just want to soak up the atmosphere of Ghent’s city center, there are plenty of things to do in Ghent’s historic city center.
Must-Visit Museums and Galleries
If you’re looking for things to do in Ghent, exploring the city’s museums and galleries should be at the top of your list. Ghent is home to some of the most impressive art collections in Europe, and there’s something for everyone, from contemporary art to medieval masterpieces.
The Museum of Fine Arts
The Museum of Fine Arts is a must-visit for art lovers. It houses an impressive collection of Flemish art, including works by Rubens, Van Eyck, and Bosch. The museum also has a collection of modern and contemporary art, making it a great place to see the evolution of art over the centuries.
The Design Museum
The Design Museum is another must-visit for those interested in art and design. The museum showcases the history of design, from the Middle Ages to the present day. The museum’s collection includes furniture, textiles, and graphic design, among other things.
The Ghent City Museum
The Ghent City Museum is a great place to learn about the history of Ghent. The museum is housed in a beautiful 14th-century building and has a collection of artifacts that tell the story of the city’s past. The museum also has a collection of contemporary art, making it a great place to see the contrast between old and new.
The Museum of Contemporary Art
The Museum of Contemporary Art is a must-visit for those interested in modern art. The museum has a collection of contemporary art from around the world, including works by local artists. The museum also hosts temporary exhibitions, so there’s always something new to see.
Whether you’re interested in Flemish art, design, history, or contemporary art, Ghent has something for everyone. These museums and galleries are just a few of the many things to do in Ghent, so be sure to add them to your itinerary.
Culinary Delights: Ghent’s Food Scene
Ghent is a foodie’s paradise, with a diverse range of culinary delights to satisfy any palate. Here are some of the must-try dishes and places to eat in Ghent:
1. Flemish Stew at ‘t Dreupelkot
If you’re looking for a hearty meal, head to ‘t Dreupelkot and try their famous Flemish stew. Made with beef, onions, and beer, this dish is a staple of Belgian cuisine and is sure to warm you up on a chilly day. Don’t forget to pair it with a glass of local beer!
2. Waffles at Max
No trip to Belgium is complete without trying a waffle, and Max is the place to go in Ghent. Their waffles are crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside, and come with a variety of toppings such as chocolate, fruit, and whipped cream. It’s the perfect sweet treat to enjoy while exploring the city.
3. Vegan Cuisine at Komkommertijd
For those who prefer plant-based options, Komkommertijd is a must-visit. This cozy restaurant offers a range of vegan dishes, from burgers to salads to soups. Their food is fresh, flavorful, and perfect for a healthy lunch or dinner.
4. Beer Tasting at De Dulle Griet
Belgium is known for its beer, and De Dulle Griet is the perfect place to sample some of the best brews in Ghent. They have over 500 different types of beer, including local favorites like Gruut and Stropken. And if you’re feeling adventurous, you can even try their famous “Max” beer, which comes in a glass boot!
5. Food Tour with “Things to do Ghent”
If you want to experience the best of Ghent’s food scene, consider taking a food tour with “Things to do Ghent”. They offer a variety of tours that take you to the city’s top restaurants, cafes, and markets, and give you a taste of the local cuisine. It’s a great way to learn about the city’s history and culture while indulging in some delicious food.
Whether you’re a foodie or just looking for a good meal, Ghent has something for everyone. So be sure to add these culinary delights to your list of “things to do Ghent” and enjoy the city’s delicious food scene!
Unwind in Ghent’s Beautiful Parks
When you’re looking for things to do in Ghent, don’t forget to take some time to relax and unwind in one of the city’s many beautiful parks. Here are some of the best parks to visit:
Citadel Park is a large, green oasis in the heart of Ghent. It’s the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle of the city and enjoy some peace and quiet. The park is home to several museums, including the Museum of Fine Arts and the Museum of Contemporary Art, as well as a playground and a pond.
Blaarmeersen Recreation Area
If you’re looking for some outdoor fun, head to the Blaarmeersen Recreation Area. This park is located just outside the city center and offers a wide range of activities, including swimming, boating, and cycling. There are also several playgrounds and picnic areas, making it a great place to spend a day with the family.
Bourgoyen-Ossemeersen Nature Reserve
For nature lovers, the Bourgoyen-Ossemeersen Nature Reserve is a must-visit. This beautiful park is home to a wide variety of birds and other wildlife, and there are several walking and cycling trails to explore. It’s the perfect place to get away from the city and enjoy some peace and quiet.
No matter which park you choose to visit, taking some time to unwind in Ghent’s beautiful green spaces is a great way to recharge your batteries and enjoy all the things to do Ghent has to offer.
Nightlife and Entertainment Hotspots
Ghent is a city that never sleeps, and there are plenty of things to do in Ghent at night. Whether you’re looking for a quiet drink or a wild night out, there’s something for everyone. Here are some of the best nightlife and entertainment hotspots in Ghent:
1. Hot Club Gent
If you’re a fan of jazz music, then Hot Club Gent is the place to be. This intimate venue hosts live jazz performances every night, and it’s the perfect spot to unwind after a long day of exploring the city. With its cozy atmosphere and talented musicians, Hot Club Gent is one of the top things to do in Ghent at night.
Charlatan is a popular nightclub that attracts a young and lively crowd. With its eclectic mix of music, from indie to techno, Charlatan is the perfect place to dance the night away. The club also hosts regular events, including live music and DJ sets, making it one of the top things to do in Ghent for music lovers.
Vooruit is a cultural center that hosts a variety of events, from concerts to theater performances. With its stunning architecture and impressive lineup of artists, Vooruit is one of the top things to do in Ghent for culture vultures. The center also has a bar and restaurant, making it the perfect spot to grab a drink or a bite to eat before or after a show.
Damberd is a cozy bar that’s perfect for a quiet drink with friends. With its friendly atmosphere and extensive selection of beers, Damberd is one of the top things to do in Ghent for beer lovers. The bar also hosts regular events, including live music and comedy shows, making it a great spot for entertainment.
5. Graslei and Korenlei
If you’re looking for a more laid-back evening, then head to Graslei and Korenlei. These picturesque quays are lined with bars and restaurants, and they offer stunning views of the city’s medieval architecture. Grab a drink and watch the world go by, or enjoy a romantic dinner with a view – either way, Graslei and Korenlei are some of the top things to do in Ghent at night.
Whether you’re looking for live music, dancing, or a quiet drink, Ghent has something for everyone. These nightlife and entertainment hotspots are just a few of the many things to do in Ghent at night, so be sure to explore the city and discover all that it has to offer.
Unique Shopping Experiences in Ghent
If you’re looking for something different to do in Ghent, why not explore the city’s unique shopping experiences? From vintage boutiques to artisanal chocolate shops, there’s something for everyone. Here are some of the best places to shop in Ghent:
1. Dille & Kamille
Located in the heart of Ghent, Dille & Kamille is a must-visit for anyone who loves cooking and home decor. This charming store sells everything from kitchen gadgets to candles, and the staff are always happy to offer advice and recommendations. It’s the perfect place to pick up a souvenir or a gift for a loved one.
If you’re looking for a more traditional shopping experience, head to Vrijdagmarkt. This bustling market takes place every Friday and is the perfect place to pick up fresh produce, flowers, and handmade crafts. It’s a great way to experience local life and soak up the atmosphere of the city.
3. Chocolaterie Van Hoorebeke
No trip to Ghent is complete without sampling some of the city’s famous chocolate. Chocolaterie Van Hoorebeke is one of the best places to do just that. This family-owned shop has been making chocolate since 1956 and is known for its high-quality, artisanal products. Be sure to try the pralines!
4. Think Twice Vintage
For those who love vintage fashion, Think Twice Vintage is a must-visit. This popular chain of second-hand stores has a branch in Ghent and is the perfect place to find unique and affordable clothing. With a constantly changing selection of items, you never know what you might find.
Whether you’re a foodie, a fashionista, or just looking for something different to do in Ghent, these unique shopping experiences are sure to delight. Don’t forget to add them to your list of things to do in Ghent!
And so, fellow travelers, our journey through the enchanting city of Ghent comes to an end. As Journeying Jack, I can confidently say that the list of things to do Ghent is seemingly endless, and I hope that my Suitcase Stories have inspired you to embark on your own adventure in this captivating city.
From the awe-inspiring architecture to the vibrant cultural scene, the things to do Ghent cater to every traveler’s taste. Whether you’re a history buff, a foodie, or an art enthusiast, Ghent has something for everyone. As you wander through the cobblestone streets and take in the breathtaking sights, you’ll find yourself falling in love with this charming city.
In conclusion, the things to do Ghent are a testament to the city’s rich history and diverse culture. As you explore the various attractions and hidden gems, you’ll create your own Suitcase Stories that you’ll cherish for a lifetime. So, pack your bags, and embark on your own journey to discover the countless things to do Ghent. Until next time, happy travels!