Sunday, September 28, 2014


Yesterday was our day to explore Ghent.  It was a fabulous day!   We started in the late morning and got on the boat tour to get an idea of what to see in the area.  Here are a few pics of our boat ride.....

After our canal trip we rented a couple of bikes to get us around for the day.  Of course, I've been riding a bike for years but add a couple of thousand people, trams, busses, and cars....not to mention cobblestone streets and tram tracks, there was quite a bit of maneuvering involved.  Even with all that,  riding the bikes around the city was a BLAST!!

We rode along the streets and stopped at anything that looked interesting:)  I loved this old building with all of the bikes parked next to it.
We knew that we wanted to get some frituurs from a street cart so we stopped for some.....along with a hot dog (Rick) and a pork skewer (me).  The frituurs were delicious.  They are french fries that are double fried.  Not so good for you but mmmm good:)

After our street lunch we stopped at a waffle--ice cream shop.  
I got the ice cream where Rick, of course got the waffle.  

We climbed the bell tower.....(well, I rode the elevator while Rick climbed) and got this beautiful view of the city.

An old door in the belfast.

In the afternoon we we into St. Bavo's Cathedral.  It is here that the mystic lamb alter by Van Eyck is housed.  Well,  kind of.  The original is being restored in there Museum of Art (which we also got to visit).  There is a lot of mystery surrounding this painting because of a theft of two of the 22 panels in 1934.  A month after the theft, the first panel was returned with a ransom note for one million Belgian Francs.  An enormous amount of money back then!  Long story short,  It was never returned.  The prime suspect died just a few months later and so it is still a mystery of the whereabouts of the missing panel.  Rick and I had a good time viewing and learning about all of the symbolism in this amazing piece of art.  I am astonished at the talent of these men.  (It was actually painted by two brothers.  The younger brother finished it after the older brother died.)  There is a lot more to the story (like the Nazi's acquiring it in the spoils of WWII and then trying to blow it up in the Salt Mines before the Allies could get to it) but it would take a long time to explain.  So fascinating though!!

After St. Bavo's we continued our bike riding!   We stopped at this fun patisserie and picked up some bread, meat, cheese, and pastries for our Sunday lunch.

We also found a macaron shop!
I had to stop and get some.  I love the bright colors of macarons!

We also passed a lace shop.  

In the evening we stopped at a Cantonese restaurant across from our hotel.  It was wonderful food!  
A nice ending to a wonderful day!!

A picture along the waterfront.  
I love the reflection of the buildings in the water.

I tried to upload a video with me riding my bike in the midst of the crowd but it's just not working:-(

1 comment:

  1. Another fun, memorable day!! Riding that bike amid the circumstances you mentioned, seemed like quite a FEAT indeed!!
    The painting you were talking about--by Van Eyck-- sounds interesting, and if you happened to take a photo of it, I'd like to see it on your camera sometime--after we get together in the future......(If you were able to take a picture of it, that is.)
    That unique building close to the Bell Tower (when you were taking a picture of the scene below), looks really fascinating, and I'm curious to know what in the world it could be--maybe a church??
    You guys just have a couple days left--probably just one day there--then the trip home. I hope you can handle your departure okay! :) You have enough 'memory-makers' to tide you over for quite some time, I'd say!! I'm delighted that you have kept us informed so well about your experiences. It's been WONDERFUL following your activities!! Thank you, Janell, for your incredible pictures and writings in your much-appreciated posts!!
    Lots of Love to you, from Karen