Ghent is a port city in northwest Belgium, at the confluence of the Leie and Scheldt rivers. During the Middle Ages it was a prominent city-state. Today it’s a university town and cultural hub. Its pedestrianized center is known for medieval architecture such as 12th-century Gravensteen castle and the Graslei, a row of guildhalls beside the Leie river harbor.

🙂 Historical buildings with picturesque views.

🙁 Nothing negative to report.

THREE things we did not know about Ghent:

  1. Ghent used to be one of Europe’s most powerful cities. After Paris, it was the second-largest city north of the Alps in the middle ages. A strategic position on the meeting point of two rivers (the Scheldt and Leie) drew wealthy tradesmen and artists into the city, not to mention royalty. The Holy Roman Emperor and King of Spain Charles V was born in Ghent in 1500.
  2. St Michael’s Bridge is a beautiful stone bridge that is one of the best spots to get a good look at the medieval heart of Ghent. From it, you can see all three of the Towers Of Ghent as well as the Gravensteen. It used to be a flat swing bridge but was replaced in the early 1900s.
  3. A signature delicacy of Ghent is the famous “cuberdon” or “neuzeke” that is a conical purple candy, traditionally raspberry-flavuored (though they also come in a few other flavours). Two wagons sell these on the Groentenmarkt and are known to be vicious rivals of each other.

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