Historic Inner Town, Ghent
The Cathedral of St Bavon in Ghent features architectural elements of Gothic and Romanesque styles. From the top of the Cathedral's tower, visitors can enjoy a good view of the city.
Hotel van Branteghem
Among the surrounding houses on Sint-Baafsplein No. 10 stands out, a very handsome patrician house of 1739 with a bust of the goddess Juno in the gable. It is the house of the Hamelinck family, who built the house on the site of the "Roosecransche" guest house which belonged to the van Branteghem family. It once housed the oldest theater in Ghent.
A UNESCO World Heritage Site symbolizing the city's independence, the Belfry in Ghent is a cultural monument that stands 298ft high.
The splendid Cloth Hall directly adjoins the Belfry. This building (1426-1441) by Simon van Assche, restored in 1900-1903 was the meeting place of the wool and cloth traders, the "Halleheeren". The Gothic ground floor, partly below ground, is divided into three by 20 columns.In 1741 it housed the town prison, today it has a cafe-restaurant which is popular with tourists.
Facilities: Restaurant or food service
The Louis XIV style jailer's house of the former prison is built on to the north side of the Belfry. There is a relief known as "Mammelokker" above the doorway. It depicts the old man Cimon, who has been condemned to death by starvation, being suckled by his daughter.
Groentenmarkt to Sint-Michelskerk
This region of Ghent includes attractions such as Het Pand and Sint-Michielskerk.
At the western end of the Hoogpoort is the Groentenmarkt, originally a fish market and since the 18th C. a vegetable market. In the Middle Ages the pillory stood here. A mustard factory and shop are in one of the surrounding houses.
On the west side of the market is the long Groot Vleeshuis, a medieval covered meat market with a guild house, chapel and numerous gables in the roof. The building originated in 1406-1410 and was restored in 1912. At the south end of the Vleeshuis is the "Penshuizeken" (entrails cottage) where the poor were given the entrails of slaughtered animals.
At the south end of the Korenmarkt (corn market), surrounded by 16-18th C. buildings, the business center of old Ghent, the lane known as Klein Turkije branches off. The oldest house is "De rode Hoed" (red hat) from the 13th C., where Albrecht Dürer lived during his stay in the town in 1523. The "Huis der Kruideniers", the guild house of the grocers, is in the same street.
The tower of the Sint-Niklaaskerk dominates the Korenmarkt, an excellent example of Scheldt Gothic. The first work began in the 13th C. and continued with interruptions until the 18th C. The Baroque west gateway to the Korenmarkt dates from 1681. The guilds of businessmen and the chamber of rhetoric 'De Fonteyne' had a chapel in the church.
At the far end of the bridge stands the Sint-Michielskerk. Work started on it in 1440 and reached the tower by 1648.
Along the Leie a group of buildings next to the church to the south in Onderbergen street are known as 'Het Pand'. This is a former 13th C. Dominican monastery and is one of the oldest buildings in Ghent. Today it is used by the university.
The Gravensteen is a fortress that once served as the residence for Flemish Counts. The fortress is built in a style inspired by Syrian Crusader Castles.
Three notable homes along the Kraanlei are "Craenenburgh", "De Lelye"and "In den Bliekenmarkt".
Gewad street comes to the Prinsenhofplein with the Donkere Poort (Dark Tower), remains of the Prinsenhof palace, inhabited by the Counts of Flanders from 1353, birthplace of Charles V, in 1500.
House of the Orators
The house of the orators is in the Goudenleeuwplein No. 7 (1539) behind the church and is the oldest voluted building of its kind in Ghent with a Renaissance facade.
Jan Frans Willems Memorial
Sint-Baafsplein opens out in front of the cathedral with the memorial to Jan Frans Willems (1793-1846), the founder of the Flemish movement on the south side.
Royal Flemish Theater
Horse Drawn Carriages
Horse-drawn carriages depart from Sint-Baafsplein from Easter to October.
Map of Ghent Attractions