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Ghent Mystic Lamb Altarpiece @ St Bavo's Cathedral

Friday 5 May at 7:15am we arrive into Brussels from Dulles. Our accommodations are in Bruge but want to figure out way to go directly from Brussels airport to Ghent to see Mystic Lamb altar piece. Any advice on transportation or how to avoid lines at St Bavo's Cathedral would be greatly appreciated.
Sally in Richmond VA.

Posted by
16100 posts

Sally, you might want to take a look at this similar, very recent thread concerning the altarpiece?

https://community.ricksteves.com/travel-forum/belgium/ghent-altar-piece

I don't know if parts of it missing for restoration would make a difference in your plan but it's worth a mention.

Editing to add: a piece about the restoration from another previous thread:

https://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/19/science/ghent-altarpiece-restoration.html?_r=0

Posted by
6 posts

I just got back from a few days in Ghent yesterday. Ghent St. Pieters train station is roughly one hour train ride from the Brussels airport (depending on time you may need to switch in Brussels, but it's a piece of cake. You can hop the #1 tram right outside the train station for three euro and get off at the Korenmarkt stop, which is almost right in front of St. Bavo's. If you walked from the train It's roughly a 20 minute walk. Not sure what time St. Bavo's opens, but we went around 3:30 pm and there was hardly anyone there. It's in a little room off to the side of the cathedral, make sure you grab the audioguide (free with admission), it had some interesting information. I'd assume that if tour groups get in there, it could get a little crowded, so might be a good strategy to get there when it opens.

I'd assume that if you buy a ticket from Brussels airport to Bruges, you'd be able to hop off in Ghent, stay a few hours, then hop back on and go the rest of the way to Ghent. Best to ask at the ticket counter.

Have fun, feel free to reach out if you have any additional questions.

Posted by
127 posts

Thank you Ted. Your message was reassuring. We have never been to Beligum. We will take the one hour train to Ghent. Is it possible to board train at Brussels airport or do we take an airport bus into Brussels and main train station.

When you were on your recent trip did you go to any of the Great War sites? We are going to explore going to Flanders field.

Posted by
4684 posts

There are two trains per hour directly from Brussels Airport to Ghent, or there are more alternatives taking the train into central Brussels and changing.

Posted by
6 posts

This site tells you all you need to know about train travel, it even provides the track numbers so you're prepared for any transfers that you may need to make on your journey. Also, all the conductors we met were happy to answer any questions we had.
http://www.belgianrail.be/en/