Saturday, July 20, 2013

Ghent, Belgium

Ghent has a lot of history and photogenic areas packed into a small location. We wandered around the old town area and saw a bunch of neat stuff.

We took the train into town, about a 40-minute to an hour ride from Brussels. On the train, the kids were bored. Until we found a newspaper someone left behind and Mommy remembered how to make pirate hats!

L the naughty pirate

J the happy pirate

In town, we saw the Stadhuis or state house, which is still the administrative center of the city. The statues include one of the architect, Rombout Keldermans, looking at his plans.


Where the statues are (sorry, no close up of the architect!)

In the plaza is a nice fountain that somehow did not fascinate the kids.

Not sure why the water is green...

Over along Graslei, a street where the main harbor was back in the medieval times, a picturesque row of guild halls stands, some dating back to the 12th century.

Graslei guild halls

More guild halls

At the south end of the street is Michielsbrug, or St. Michael's Bridge, which was also a great spot for photographs.

St. Michael's Bridge (with St. Michael's church on the right)

View along St. Michael's Bridge

At the corner of the bridge and Graslei is the Korenmarkt. It was the corn market but is now a shopping area with a post office.


The variety of fancy buildings is amazing in this area, as are the various views down canals.

Pretty building across from the Korenmarkt

Another random building in town

Peaceful canal view

We also found a lovely little cafe for lunch right on the canal. Not only was the food good but they also had some board games. The children had their first experience playing Battleship, though they just stuck the boats and the pegs in their boards. They probably would have been upset if they had destroyed each other's fleets.

Tomorrow, we visit the central cathedral!

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