This excursion was part of our trip that ended in Paris. Arriving in Ghent on a May Day in 2013. It was a cloudy, and it had rained on and off for 4 month. First thing we saw was a see of bicycles at the train station. We walked to our B&B “A Bed in Ghent” by host Tom de Wolf. We were greeted warmly, and he carried our luggage upstairs.
The room was retro and comfortable. I remember it had a records and a record player from Beatles and such, basically 70ties music. After discovering Ghent on 48 hour city pass, Museums, castle and boat rides, we took a day trip to Brugge. Ghent is conveniently located between Brussel and Brugge.
Ghent is a port city in northwest Belgium where the rivers Leie and Scheldt rivers meet. In the Middle Ages, Ghent was a powerful city. Today the university town is a center of cultural activities. The traffic-calmed city center is known for its medieval architecture, such as Gravensteen Castle from the 12th century and the buildings on the Graslei, a series of guild houses on the Leiehafen.
Bruges or Brugge is the capital of West Flanders in northwest Belgium. The canals, cobblestone streets and medieval buildings are characteristic of the city. The port of Zeebrugge is an important center for fishing and European trade. The Stadhuis (town hall) from the 14th century on Burgplatz has an artistically carved ceiling. On the nearby market square there is a belfry from the 13th century with a carillon of 47 bells. The 83 m high tower offers a panoramic view.
The Belgians are masters in languages, lots of them speak German, French, English and their own Flandern. By the way, something that is confusing, the town Brugge is the name in Dutch, Bruges in French, and Brügge in German.
A great resource I found were those guide books by Rick Steves. It helped me discover sites I did not know without. You can buy them here:
More impressions of the Brugge
Click on picture for the Belgian Waffle recipe