Whichever language you choose to say it’s name in, Gent is one of the most charming and lively cities in Flanders . It has great bars and nightlife, canals and historic squares, and more old buildings and churches than you could throw a stick at.
If you only visit one city in Belgium go to Gent. Brugge is pretty but Gent is vibrant AND pretty.
Here’s an example: art, old buildings, a canal and people drinking all in the one photo. My kind of place.
As it seemed time to do a little touristing we went to the Design Museum. It has an amazing mix of 18th and 19th Century design and art in a gorgeous old building, mixed with modern and post modern art and design pieces.
Loved this original wallpaper in one of the rooms – surprisingly modern.
And this mutant bear by Philippe Starck also took my fancy, pity he wasn’t for sale in the gift shop.
Then time for a proper coffee. This espresso from Simon Says sure hit the spot.The apple and cherry juice was also ace.
Possibly the best coffee I have ever had in Belgium. Highly recommended. This place is also a Bed and Breakfast – if I ever need to stay overnight in Gent will be at the top of my list of places.
Was served with some of the best frites I have ever had. A must try if you are in Gent.
Gentse stoverij is the local version of the more general “stoverij” or “stoofpot”. It is basically a rich beef stew with mustard and often Belgian beer in the sayce.
We couldn’t quite stomach the whole portion so asked for a doggie bag and got this. Fancy schmancy.
It is likely that this is in order to be in compliance with food serving rules, they have included the date etc on the packet.
Then at 10pm that night I did the “midzomernachtrun“. A 15 kilometre fun run through the old centre of Gent. There was also a 10 kilometer option. Total field around 3,600 runners.
My photo from the course shows some of the atmosphere but not a lot more. Amazing night and the most picturesque run I have ever done. That said cobblestones which formed quite a lot of the course are pretty horrific to run on!
The post race showbags contained the usual random product samples plus some Gulden Draak – an excellent beer from Gent.
Official tourism website for Gent If it’s your first visit you should probably at least see the Gravensteen Castle and take a tour of the canals on a boat.
Design Museum Gent is at Jan Breydelstraat 5 9000 Gent