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A few days in Ghent.

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United Kingdom
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A few days in Ghent.

Hi. My wife and I will be in Brussels and Ghent next week for a 40th birthday and also a wedding anniversary celebration. A couple of questions. We will be coming on the train from Brussels to Ghent on Sunday afternoon. We are staying at the Castelnou aparthotel on Kasteellaan. This only looks like a walk of about 1km on the map. Is this about right?

We think we know what sights we are going to see but I need some info on the pubs. Whenever we visit somewehere we always seem to find the best pub just as we are leaving. Any reccommendations? We will be trying to get back to the airport at Brussels a few days later. Do we just have to catch a train back from Ghent, change trains and then onto the airport or does anyone know of a better way? Any other tips would be most appreciated as this is our first visit. Thanks

Ghent, Belgium
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1. Re: A few days in Ghent.

Your hotel is within walking distance of Gent's other station called Gent Dampoort.

During the week the train at 15 minutes past the hour, goes straight to the airport.

Barcelona, Spain
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2. Re: A few days in Ghent.

'Het Trappistenhuis' @ Brabantdam 164 has a wide range of Belgian beers and is less frequented by tourists. And it's halfway the tourist center and your hotel!

http://www.trappistenhuis.be/

Belgium
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3. Re: A few days in Ghent.

From the main station (Gent Sint-Pieters) where you will arrive coming from Brussels, you can take any of these buses: 70 – 71 – 72 – 76 – 77 – 78, leaving from platform number 23 south side of the train station. Get off at the stop called “Lousbergbrug”. The bus trip takes about 15 min.

Your alternative is:

When you arrive in Gent-Sint-Pieters take any train direction Antwerpen or Eeklo and get off at Gent Dampoort. This takes about 7 min. From Dampoort station Castelnou is indeed about 1 km. Your train ticket from Brussels to Gent is valid for both the St-Pieters station and the Dampoort station (so no extra for Dampoort).

Besides the pubs popular with tourists (Keizershof, Trollenkelder, etc.), the following are worth trying:

’t Dreupelkot (=Waterhuis aan de Bierkant), Groentenmarkt 9

’t Galgenhuisje, Groentenmarkt 12

Café De Hel, Kraanlei 82

Hotsy Totsy, Hoogstraat 1

These cafés are completely different from one another: the first two are well known for beer and jenever (“Dutch Gin”). “De Hel” calls itself a “degustation salon” and serves mainly cocktails (they do have some beers) in a rather voluptuous orientalistic (not oriental) interior. In the sixties the Hotsy Totsy used to be favored by artists (writers, painters, sculptors, etc.). During the Genste Feesten (when you are there), there are plenty of music performances and cultural interviews organized in the Hotsy Totsy. For these activities you will need tickets (which are probably sold out by now).

If you are interested in the very local popular pubs where the people of the neighborhood come to watch football games over (plenty) of beers or play cards or darts, try “Willen is kunnen” in the St-Coletastraat (although decent it can be very lively there), or the cafés around the square “Ledebergplein”, especially on Sunday mornings when there is market in the square.

I hesitate to suggest “The Backdoor” in the St-Amandsstraat because the patron can be very, very grumpy (some might even call him impolite). He is a Britpop fan. As in an English pub, you have to get your drinks yourselves at the counter. Mainly beer and whiskey.

As for returning to the airport: pbuyse is right, on ***weekdays*** there is a direct train from Gent-Sint-Pieters to the airport every 15 minutes past the hour. (If you leave from Dampoort station you will have to change in Gent-Sint-Pieters).

United Kingdom
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4. Re: A few days in Ghent.

Brilliant. Thanks very much everybody for your advice and suggestions. I think I will be fine now.

United Kingdom
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43 posts
17 reviews
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5. Re: A few days in Ghent.

Hi

Just got back and wanted to say thanks for your help. The tip about the train back was very useful and we especially liked the 'trappistenhuis'. Shame that it rained everyday but still enjoyed it. Cheers

Belgium
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6. Re: A few days in Ghent.

Thanks for reporting back. Glad you enjoyed your stay.

Barcelona, Spain
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7. Re: A few days in Ghent.

I'm glad you liked the less touristy 'Trappistenhuis'!

8. Re: A few days in Ghent.

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