Ghent, a charming and historic city located in the Flemish region of Belgium, is a must-visit destination for travellers seeking to immerse themselves in Belgium’s rich culture and history. As the first stop on our trip to Belgium, Ghent immediately captivated us with its stunning medieval architecture, vibrant art scene, and picturesque canals.

From the moment we arrived, we were enchanted by the city’s relaxed atmosphere and friendly locals, who welcomed us with open arms and shared their love for all things Ghent. After exploring Ghent, we continued our journey through Belgium, but the memories we made in this enchanting city stayed with us long after we left.

General Information

  • The currency of Belgium is the Euro. To keep up to date with currency exchange rate changes see XE Currency Converter.
  • Ghent is a city located in the Flemish region of Belgium and is the capital of the East Flanders province.
  • It has a population of about 262,000 inhabitants.
  • Ghent has a rich history that dates back to the medieval period and it is known for its stunning architecture, beautiful canals, and delicious food.
  • There are 2 airports nearby, Brussels Airport (Zaventem Airport) and Charleroi Airport. For available flights and prices see here.
  • Information for the necessary travel documents, depending on your nationality and your destination can be found here.
  • The predominant languages are Dutch and French, but English is widely spoken, especially in tourist areas.

Transportation in Ghent

Transfer from/to the airport

Train: The train station is located on the basement level of the airport terminal. Several trains run daily from the airport to Ghent-Sint-Pieters station, with a journey time of around 50 minutes.

Taxi: Taxis are available outside the arrivals area of the airport. The journey time to Ghent is around 60 minutes, depending on traffic.

For reservations and prices see here.

Shuttle bus: There are shuttle buses that run between the airport and Ghent city center, with stops at various hotels and tourist attractions. The journey time is around 90 minutes. You can check the schedule and book tickets in advance here.

Car rental: If you prefer to have your own transportation, there are several car rental companies located at the airport. You can check availability and prices here.

See which hotel we chose for our stay in Ghent here.

Transportation within the city

The most convenient way to travel within Ghent is by foot or by bike. The city is relatively small and the center is easily accessible by foot or by bike.

Ghent has an extensive network of buses and trams operated by De Lijn, which covers the entire city and the surrounding areas. You can purchase tickets from the driver or the ticket machines located at the bus and tram stops.

Taxis are also available throughout the city and can be hailed on the street or ordered in advance. Taxi rates are regulated by the government and are posted in the taxi.

Car rentals are available, but not recommended for driving within the city center as parking can be difficult to find and expensive. However, it can be useful for exploring the surrounding areas.

What to do in Ghent

Visit Gravensteen Castle

Gravensteen Castle is a popular attraction in Ghent. The castle dates back to the Middle Ages and has a rich history that is well worth exploring. Visitors can take a guided tour of the castle to learn more about its history and see some of the unique features of the castle, such as the moat, the torture chamber, and the ramparts.

The castle also offers stunning views of the city from its towers. If you don’t want to go inside the castle you can enjoy your walk around it and take your photos. If you’re interested in history or architecture, a visit to Gravensteen Castle is a must-do activity in Ghent.

Gravensteen Castle is a popular attraction in Ghent.
Explore St. Bavo’s Cathedral

St. Bavo’s Cathedral is a stunning Gothic cathedral located in the heart of Ghent. Built-in the 14th and 15th centuries, the cathedral is home to numerous works of art, including the world-famous Ghent Altarpiece by Jan van Eyck. Visitors can also climb the tower for panoramic views of the city.

The cathedral is a must-visit for anyone interested in art, history, and architecture. At a short distance from Cathedral, you could also see the Belfry. An iconic medieval tower, a UNESCO World Heritage site which offers breathtaking panoramic views of the city.

 Belfry tower in ghent
Wander the Graslei and Korenlei

The Graslei and Korenlei are two quays that run parallel to each other along the Leie River in the heart of Ghent’s historic center. They are lined with stunning medieval buildings that were once the homes and warehouses of wealthy merchants.

To make the most of your visit to the Graslei and Korenlei, we recommend taking a stroll along the quays and taking in the beautiful architecture and views of the river. There are also several cafes and restaurants along the way where you can stop for a bite to eat or a refreshing drink.

One of the most iconic buildings along the Graslei is the Het Steen, a 13th-century castle that was used to defend the city against invaders. It has since been converted into a maritime museum that is open to visitors. Another notable building along the Korenlei is the Groot Vleeshuis, a 15th-century meat hall that has been converted into a food market where you can sample a variety of local delicacies, including cheese, meat, and beer.

The Graslei and Korenlei are two quays that run parallel to each other along the Leie River in the heart of Ghent's historic center.
Check out the Design Museum Gent

The Design Museum Gent is a must-visit destination for design enthusiasts and anyone interested in the history of design. Located in the heart of the city, the museum features a diverse collection of objects and artifacts spanning the 15th century to the present day, showcasing the evolution of design through the ages.

The museum’s permanent collection includes over 18,000 objects, including furniture, ceramics, textiles, glassware, and industrial design items. Visitors can explore various design movements such as Art Nouveau, Art Deco, and Μodernism, as well as discover works by influential designers such as Charles and Ray Eames and Alvar Aalto. In addition to its permanent collection, the Design Museum Gent hosts temporary exhibitions that explore various aspects of design, from contemporary design trends to the role of design in society.

Visitors can take advantage of audio guides, guided tours, and workshops to enhance their experience and learn more about the fascinating world of design. The museum is open every day except for Mondays, and admission is free on the first Sunday of every month.

The Design Museum Gent is a must-visit destination for design enthusiasts
Visit the Museum of Fine Arts

The Museum of Fine Arts in Ghent is definitely worth a visit for art lovers. The museum is located in a beautiful building that dates back to the late 18th century and contains a vast collection of artwork spanning from the Middle Ages to the present day.

Some of the notable artists represented in the collection include Jan van Eyck, Hieronymus Bosch, Peter Paul Rubens, and James Ensor. In addition to the permanent collection, the museum also hosts temporary exhibitions throughout the year, so be sure to check the schedule before you go. Visitors can purchase tickets online or at the museum itself.

The Museum of Fine Arts in Ghent
Take a boat tour of the canals

Taking a boat tour of the canals in Ghent is a must-do activity. The city has an extensive network of canals that were once used for trade and transportation, but now provide visitors with a unique perspective on the city’s architecture and history. The tours usually last around 40 minutes to an hour and offer a relaxing way to take in the sights.

There are several tour operators offering canal tours, with varying routes and commentary, so it’s worth doing some research to find out one that suits your preferences. Some of the most popular routes include the Graslei and Korenlei, which offer views of some of the most beautiful and historic buildings in the city, as well as the picturesque Patershol neighborhood.

Patershol neighboorhood
Admire the street art

Ghent is known for its vibrant street art scene, and there are plenty of murals and graffiti to discover throughout the city. Some of the best places to see street art in Ghent include Werregarenstraat (also known as Graffiti Street), a narrow alley filled with colorful tags and murals, and the walls along Dampoort station.

Other notable locations include the back alleys around the Oude Beestenmarkt, the area around the old Vooruit building, and the neighborhood of Muide. Keep in mind that street art is always changing, so what you see one day may be different the next!

Ghent include Werregarenstraat (also known as Graffiti Street)
Visit the Ghent Flower Market

The Ghent Flower Market, or the “Bloemenmarkt”, is a vibrant and colorful market located in the heart of the city. It takes place every Sunday from 8 am to 1 pm in the Kouter neighborhood. The market offers a wide variety of flowers, plants, and other gardening items, as well as a lively atmosphere that is sure to put a smile on your face.

Visiting the Ghent Flower Market is a great way to start your Sunday morning. The market is a popular destination for both tourists and locals alike, so be prepared for crowds. Take your time strolling through the market, enjoying the colorful displays and fragrant scents. You might even find the perfect souvenir to take home with you!

The Ghent Flower Market is also a great place to people watch and soak up the local culture. After visiting the market, take a stroll through the charming streets of Kouter, stopping at one of the many cafes and restaurants to enjoy a coffee or brunch.

Ghent Flower market
Excursions from Ghent

While there is plenty to see and do in Ghent, the city also makes a great base for exploring other parts of Belgium and beyond. Just a short train ride away is the picturesque city of Bruges, famous for its charming canals and historic buildings. The bustling capital city of Brussels is also within easy reach, offering visitors a chance to explore its many museums, galleries, and restaurants.

For those looking to venture further afield, the small but mighty country of Luxembourg is also accessible from Ghent. Whether you want to explore local history and culture or discover new sights and sounds, there are plenty of options for day trips and excursions from Ghent.

Brugge Central Market
Patershol neighborhood

Nestled in the heart of Ghent, the Patershol neighborhood beckons visitors with its enchanting ambiance and historic allure. As you wander through its winding, cobbled streets, you’ll be greeted by a postcard-perfect scene at every turn. The neighborhood’s picturesque architecture, featuring well-preserved buildings dating back centuries, creates a captivating backdrop for leisurely strolls.

Patershol is not only a feast for the eyes but also a culinary haven, with its array of quaint cafés, lively bars, and delectable restaurants. Food enthusiasts will be delighted by the diverse range of cuisines on offer, from traditional Belgian fare to international flavors. Explore the hidden nooks and crannies, discover charming shops and boutiques, and soak up the vibrant atmosphere of this charming neighborhood.

Best Places to eat in Ghent

Publiek: Α restaurant in Ghent that offers creative cuisine made with local and seasonal ingredients. The menu changes frequently to reflect what is available at the market, ensuring that every dish is fresh and delicious. The restaurant has a sleek and modern interior design, with an open kitchen that allows diners to see the chefs at work. Some popular dishes at Publiek include the veal sweetbread, beef tartare, and the duck breast. They also offer an extensive wine list with options from all over the world.

Balls & Glory: Α cozy and casual restaurant that specializes in meatballs. They offer a variety of meatballs, including pork, chicken, and vegetarian options. The meatballs are served with mashed potatoes, seasonal vegetables, and a variety of sauces. The restaurant also has a selection of local beers to pair with your meal. The atmosphere is laid-back and friendly, making it a great spot for a casual lunch or dinner.

Otomat: Α popular pizzeria in Ghent known for its unique pizza toppings and cozy atmosphere. Their menu features creative pizzas with ingredients such as goat cheese, truffle, and pulled pork. They also offer vegan and gluten-free options. The restaurant has a trendy and rustic decor and is great for a casual night out with friends or family.

Mosquito Coast: Α restaurant and bar located in Ghent that serves a fusion of Caribbean and Latin American cuisine. The menu includes a variety of small plates, ceviches, tacos, and cocktails, as well as vegetarian and vegan options. The atmosphere is colorful and lively, with a tropical-themed decor that adds to the overall experience. It’s a great spot for a fun night out or a casual dinner with friends.

Du Progres: Α popular brasserie located in the heart of Ghent, near the Graslei and Korenlei. This historic establishment has been serving customers since 1845, making it one of the oldest restaurants in the city. The menu features classic Belgian dishes, including mussels, steak, and fries, as well as a variety of seafood options. The atmosphere is warm and inviting, with traditional decor and a cozy ambiance. Du Progres is a great choice for anyone looking to experience the charm of old-world Ghent while enjoying a delicious meal.

When to go

The best time to visit Ghent is during the spring (April to May) and fall (September to November) when the weather is mild and the crowds are smaller compared to the peak summer months. The summer months (June to August) can be quite busy, especially during festivals and events. Winters (December to February) can be chilly and rainy, but the Christmas season is a particularly festive time to visit with beautiful holiday decorations and markets throughout the city.

Useful Sites & Apps

In the last few years we have been travelling we have singled out some applications, which we use before every trip or during it. We have chosen them over others for their validity, ease of use and variety in the options they have to offer. We describe below in detail what these are together with their characteristics. is a popular online booking platform for accommodations worldwide. With a vast selection of hotels, apartments, villas, and more, offers travellers the convenience of finding and booking their ideal stay in just a few clicks. The site’s user-friendly interface and extensive filtering options make it easy to narrow down search results based on specific preferences such as price, location, amenities, and more. As a result, has become a go-to destination for travellers looking for hassle-free booking options. With competitive pricing and a loyalty program that rewards repeat bookings, is a top choice for travellers seeking great deals and a seamless booking experience. Find available rooms here.

Welcome Pickups

One of the best, most trustworthy, and most convenient 5-star airport taxi companies for your airport transfer based on user reviews across various platforms such as Google, Tripadvisor, and Trustpilot. Welcome Pickups offers a great experience and safety to its travelers. Local English-speaking drivers, flat, pre-paid fee, flight monitoring for delays, 24/7 Customer support + free cancellation. Check your options here.

Air Bnb

With over one million properties all around the world, and always increasing, ideal for a low budget stay even in expensive areas. Furthermore, because you stay in people’s villas, houses or flats you are made to feel more at home by the host of each destination and the homely surroundings. is a leading provider of hotel accommodation worldwide, offering booking services through its own network of localised websites. Once you reach 10 nights, you’ll have a free night which you can apply at checkout. You can earn multiple free nights by continuing to book with, though. The platform gives travellers one of the widest selections of accommodation on the net, including both independent and major chain hotels as well as self-catering in over hundreds of thousands properties worldwide. The company offers a one-stop shopping source for hotel pricing, amenities and availability. Find the best deals here.


Tripadvisor helps hundreds of millions of people each month become better travellers, from planning to booking to taking a trip. Travellers across the globe use the Tripadvisor site and app to discover where to stay, what to do and where to eat based on guidance from those who have been there before. With more than 1 billion reviews and opinions of nearly 8 million businesses, travellers turn to Tripadvisor to find deals on accommodations, book experiences, reserve tables at delicious restaurants and discover great places nearby. Find available offers and book your accommodation here.

Omio is a leading travel platform that helps you easily plan and book your trips. With a comprehensive network of trains, buses, and flights across Europe and beyond, Omio allows you to compare and choose the best travel options for your needs. Whether you’re looking for a quick day trip or an extended vacation, Omio’s user-friendly interface and competitive prices make it easy to create unforgettable travel experiences. Check available routes here.


Skyscanner is a leading global travel search engine, helping millions of travellers find the best flights, hotels and car rentals. With a user-friendly interface and powerful search technology, Skyscanner makes it easy to compare prices and options across hundreds of travel providers, giving you the best deals for your trip. From budget to luxury, domestic to international, Skyscanner has everything you need to plan your next adventure. So whether you’re travelling for business or leisure, start your journey with Skyscanner and discover the world like never before. Available flights and prices can be found here.


GetYourGuide is an online marketplace for booking travel activities and experiences. With a wide variety of tours, activities, and attractions available in destinations around the world, GetYourGuide makes it easy to find and book unique experiences for your next trip. From city sightseeing tours and food and wine tastings to outdoor adventures and cultural experiences, GetYourGuide has something for every type of traveller. With a user-friendly website and mobile app, and a commitment to customer satisfaction, GetYourGuide is a top choice for travellers seeking memorable and authentic experiences. Book your activities here.

Discover Cars offers a hassle-free car rental booking experience, with a wide range of rental car options available worldwide. Whether you’re travelling for business or pleasure, offers competitive rates, 24/7 customer support, and flexible cancellation policies. With no hidden fees and a user-friendly interface, booking your rental car has never been easier. Choose from a variety of car rental options, including economy, luxury, and family-friendly vehicles, and enjoy the freedom of the open road on your next adventure. Book with today and start exploring the world on your own terms!

Hotel Tonight

Here you will find last minute discounts on vacancies from hotels. This is an amazingly simple app and it doesn’t take long to book a room. You may search in each town for sights and maps. Furthermore, you can check the reviews and photos of other travellers in order to be sure about the reliability of each hotel. It also has a 24/7 customer service. If you’re stuck somewhere and you need a room desperately, this is the perfect app for you.

City Maps 2Go

Maps for travelling, hiking, mountain cycling and many other activities. A necessary app for every adventure, activity or tour abroad. You may only download one map per country, whereas it was possible to download two in the past. For an additional map you need to pay. Alternatively, as soon as you have looked at the information on a map you can delete it and then download a new one. 

You can mark all the places of interest on the map you have downloaded. Whether they are sights, shops, or restaurants you can use the directions guide to get there. The great advantage of this app is that you don’t need to have an internet connection although it might get stuck a few times. Nevertheless, it is quite a reliable and useful app.

EXTRA TIP: When you mark most points of interest before your trip, you can see approximately in which area you will need to book a room. To be as close as possible to all points of interest. is an online platform that helps travellers obtain electronic visas, eVisas, and other travel documents quickly and easily. With an extensive database of travel requirements for over 200 countries and a user-friendly application process, makes it simple for travellers to apply for and obtain the necessary documents for their trips. Whether you’re planning a vacation, business trip, or other travel experience, can help you navigate the complexities of travel documentation with ease. More information for the necessary travel documents, depending on your nationality and destination can be found here.


Designed for digital nomads, remote workers and frequent travellers. Unlike other international travel insurance, it has global coverage for a monthly fee. The company offers some different insurance packages like nomad insurance, remote health etc. Find which package suits you best here.