We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Worth visiting if you have a head for heights”
Review of Gravensteen Castle

Gravensteen Castle
Book In Advance
More Info
and up
Ghent and Bruges Day Trip from Brussels
More Info
and up
Brussels Super Saver: Brussels Sightseeing Tour, Antwerp Half-Day Trip, Day...
More Info
and up
Private Tour: Ghent and Bruges Day Trip from Brussels
Ranked #5 of 176 things to do in Ghent
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: The only surviving "castle of the count."
Amersham, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
101 reviews
57 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 87 helpful votes
“Worth visiting if you have a head for heights”
Reviewed September 9, 2013

Gravensteen is a majestic looking castle in the middle of the town, surrounded by tram tracks, canals and cafes. Entry was free for me with my CityCard.

My brain was obviously on a go-slow because I hadn't thought that, if I wanted to see anything, I was going to have to climb inside the buildings. The visit follows a prescribed course and the stairs are mostly spiral, narrow and worn ... actually going up wasn't too bad and the views at the top were wonderful.

The torture room was ... interesting. It isn't a torture museum and doesn't pretend to be (see one of the previous reviews). It's a room with torture instruments in it. There's also an armoury. Most of the rooms are empty but with information about the history.

Coming down the stairs was another thing entirely. A very kind Dutch(?) couple saw my hesitation and one went in front of me and the other behind which made me feel a great deal safer and I offer them my heartfelt thanks should they be reading this.

Height, or rather steep drop, problems continued right to the end of the trail where the walkway round the inside of the outer wall had a steep drop to the courtyard.

Despite all that, it was a good place to go and visit - I felt by the end that I had learnt something, beaten my fear of heights temporarily and had some great views.

Visited July 2013
1 Thank GillB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

3,026 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Greek first
  • Hebrew first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Slovak first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Turkish first
  • Any
English first
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
544 reviews
158 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 207 helpful votes
“Rebuilt castle with a sample of city history”
Reviewed September 7, 2013

Worth a visit if walking uin center of town to at least see views across city. Quite a bit of walking and access to stairs might be challenging for those with mobility issues. Several areas with no rail or barrier to a spectacular fall! Torture chamber and instruments are not for faint hearted.

Visited August 2013
Thank James G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 5 Contributor
79 reviews
38 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“Great views, nice tour”
Reviewed September 6, 2013 via mobile

The entrance was complementary staying at hotel Gravensteen. The steep, narrow stairways can be a challenge. Gives a decent, yet somewhat claustrophobic, feel of life in the castle. The videotape was a nice extra, telling a take which is loosely based on the local history. Weapons room is probably the most complete room, the rest may seen a bit bare. The keep facilitates an excellent view of Ghent.

Visited September 2013
Thank JoranQuinten
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sussex by the sea
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Very interesting, but not with an hangover”
Reviewed September 5, 2013

A lovely old castle in the centre of Ghent which we discovered also houses a museum of torture and execution instruments. If you have a hang-over you may want to skip that part of the attraction! Ramparts of great for photos of the city and cathedral. Even better, free entry to under 19's when we visited!

Visited September 2013
Thank whereissussex
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, Georgia
Level 6 Contributor
99 reviews
53 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
“Crusader Castle”
Reviewed September 4, 2013

I didn't bother paying to visit the inside of this castle, but it is an amazing sight from the outside. Our guide told us this was built by the Knights Templar. I can just imagine knights and lords and ladies walking the grounds.

Some of our friends paid to visit the torture museum, but didn't give it very high marks.

Visited August 2013
Thank martigold
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Gravensteen Castle also viewed

Ghent, East Flanders Province
Ghent, East Flanders Province

Been to Gravensteen Castle? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing