Where to Stay in Ghent (Areas + Favourite Hotels)

A complete guide to where to stay in Ghent, Belgium (+ the best area for sightseeing and hand-picked hotels with parking).

Ghent is the largest city of the East Flanders province in Belgium. It’s a charming medieval city, that boasts an impressive canal-side structure and a vibrant nightlife.

The city is the hidden gem of Belgium. Although the architecture is quite similar to Bruges, Ghent is less popular and not so crowded. Most tourists prefer to stay in Bruges and make a day trip to Ghent (or skip it at all). Thus, you can easily find cheaper accommodation in comparison to Bruges.

However, Ghent is not to be missed. Cobblestone streets, picturesque canal views, medieval houses and on top of it all, a gorgeous castle! Plus, being a university city, there are more affordable eating options than Bruges.

To see the best of the city, follow this one day in Ghent itinerary. It also includes tips on how to see Ghent and Bruges in only one day.

Continue reading to find the best area to stay in Ghent for tourists. Still, if you’re planning an overnight stay in Bruges, check out my guide to the best hotels in Bruges with parking and a canal view.

Where I stayed

I visited the city as a part of my winter trip to Belgium. It wasn’t hard to decide where to stay in Ghent. All the attractions are clustered together in the historic city centre. Plus, the Christmas market (the main reason for my trip) is also in the heart of the city centre.

My favourite hotel in this area is Hotel Harmony. It has a fantastic location for sightseeing, right next to Gravensteen Castle. Plus, there is a heated swimming pool.

The city centre was the perfect location for me. I’d recommend staying there as this is the most convenient area to explore the city.

Most popular hotel in Ghent

In a hurry? Looking for a good hotel with a fantastic location for your city break?

Then check out NH Belfort – it’s the most popular hotel.

NH Belfort – Most popular

NH Belfort has an unbeatable location, right next to the historic City Hall. Restaurants, boat tours, attractions, everything is within walking distance. Plus, there is private underground parking on site.
Why book – opposite the City Hall, underground parking, extensive and fresh breakfast

ghent city centre

Historic City Centre – best area to stay in Ghent

Which is the best area to stay in Ghent?

The best area to stay in Ghent is the historic city centre. It’s compact and everything is within a walking distance (no need to use public transport at all). Here you’ll find the medieval Gravensteen Castle, the Belfry Tower and the stunning St. Bavo’s Cathedral.

Also, most of the hotels and restaurants are in the historic centre.

Don’t miss to explore the city by taking a boat tour. You’ll learn the fascinating history of medieval Ghent and discover its beautiful city centre.

The city centre is the best area to stay for sightseeing. But what if you plan to use Ghent as a base to explore Belgium? In this case, I’d again recommend staying in the city centre. If you’re travelling by car, don’t miss to book a hotel with parking.

For those who are travelling by train, don’t stay near the train station. The Sint-Pieters railway station is about 2km from the city centre. Maybe it will be easier to catch an early train, but you’ll have to rely on public transport for every night out in the city.

You can reach the Sint-Pieters train station by tram line 1.

Why stay in Ghent historic city centre

  • You’ll be in the heart of medieval Ghent and explore the city on foot.
  • If you’re visiting the city in December, don’t miss the Ghent Christmas Market.
  • The best places to see the city from above are the Belfry Tower and Gravensteen Castle.
  • A visit to Gravensteen Castle is a must, but don’t miss the less known Castle of Gerald the Devil.
  • Another must-see attraction is the famous altarpiece Adoration of the Mystic Lamb in St Bavo’s Cathedral.
  • Take a stroll along the Graslei and Korenlei quays, the most picturesque part of the city.

Hotels in Ghent City Centre (Best for couples)

Hotel Harmony – Best rated

Hotel Harmony is situated right on Kraanlei quay, in the oldest district of Ghent. Gravensteen Castle is less than 100m away. Some of the spacious, well-designed rooms offer amazing views of the canal. In addition, tram line 1, that takes you directly to the Central train station, is only a 2min walk. It’s the perfect place to stay for a romantic city break.
Why book – located on Kraanlei quay, heated swimming pool, private parking, garden terrace

Hotel Gravensteen – Most popular

For a romantic castle view, stay at Hotel Gravensteen. The 19th-century building that the hotel occupies, adds to the romantic atmosphere. Location is fantastic, just a short walk to the shopping district and all major attractions. Plus, the hotel offers private parking with charging stations for electric cars.
Why book – 40m from Gravensteen Castle, private parking

Hotels in City Centre (Best for families)

NH Belfort – Most popular

NH Belfort is one of the best places to stay in Ghent for families. Location is more than perfect, just opposite the historic City Hall. This is less than a 5min walk to the cathedral, Belfry and Graslei harbour for boat trips. Quiet, spacious rooms with comfortable beds.
Why book – opposite the City Hall, underground parking, extensive and fresh breakfast

Marriott Hotel – Best rated

Marriott Hotel is right in the middle of everything. Conveniently located on Korenlei quay, it’s just a 5min walk to Gravensteen Castle and the Belfry. Comfortable and well-equipped rooms. In addition, the hotel offers bikes, so you can explore the city on your own terms.
Why book – location on Korenlei quay, restaurant and private parking on-site

Luxury hotels in City Centre

Pillows Grand Hotel Reylof – Best rated

This is the best rated 5-star luxury hotel in Ghent. Located in a quiet area, it’s a short walk to the historic city centre. The comfy rooms feature large windows, high ceilings and original artworks. The fine dining restaurant offers delicious international food with Flemish influences.
Why book – 500m from the historic centre, wellness centre, gourmet restaurant

1898 The Post – Most popular

1898 The Post occupies a beautiful 19th-century building in the heart of the Old Town. The hotel features a unique atmosphere and it’s full of character. The luxurious boutique style rooms offer breathtaking views to the city centre. If you look for a special place to stay in Ghent, this is the best choice.
Why book – location on Graslei quay, cocktail bar, private parking nearby, luxurious rooms

Apartments in City Centre

Snooz Ap Holiday Flats – Best rated

These apartments are centrally located yet in a quiet area. Close to the main tourist spots, bars and restaurants. Spacy and comfy, the apartments are well equipped with a lot of attention to the details. Plus, the rooftop terrace reveals great views of the city!
Why book – 400m from St Bavo’s Cathedral, private parking, rooftop terrace

Place 2 stay – Most popular

Nice, central apartments with a climate control system and fully equipped kitchen. The accommodation is spacious with a lot of natural light. Easy access to the main tourist attractions. Plus, there is a local supermarket just around the corner.
Why book – 400m from Gravensteen Castle, private parking nearby, easy check-in

Graslei and Korenlei

Hotels in Ghent with parking

The Ghent’s inner city (the area within the yellow ring road) is a low emission zone. To enter the city centre, your car has to meet the conditions for admission.

In addition, the city has 5 car-free areas that form the pedestrian zone. You can’t drive or park in the pedestrian zone (more info here).

My advice is to book accommodation with parking if you’re travelling by car (see the recommended hotels below). If your hotel doesn’t have private parking, you can use the paid parkings – Vrijdagmarkt (P1) and Reep (P2).

Hotel Harmony – Best for couples

Hotel Harmony is conveniently situated next to Gravensteen Castle. Close to restaurants, bars and major attractions. Rooms are spacious and beautifully decorated. A private parking garage with EV charging station is available on site.
Why book – location on Kraanlei quay, heated swimming pool, private parking, garden terrace

NH Belfort – Best for families

NH Belfort is one of the best hotels for families that has parking. It’s right in the heart of the medieval city, opposite the historic City Hall. Although the location is central, the rooms are quiet at night. Underground private parking with EV charging station is available on site.
Why book – opposite the City Hall, underground parking, extensive and fresh breakfast

What is the best area to stay in Ghent for you?
Pin for later
where to stay in ghent
best area to stay in ghent

About the author

Avatar Milena Yordanova
I am a full-time traveller and I have visited over 20 countries across 2 continents. Travelling has always been my passion and I love to discover new places, cultures and food. I’m an expert in travel planning and I am here to help you plan your dream vacation.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *