wend.ca | travel geek



The Sick Children of Alijn’s Hofje

It seems that in Dutch, there are dozens of words that can be used to describe a house that takes in the poor or destitute: beguinage, hofje, goedhuis, Godshuizen. Each one has a subtle meaning (depending on who is supported)… Continue Reading →

Where Angels Wear Gas Masks and Monks Make Beer

The monks of the Augustijnen Monastery in Ghent (Sint Stefanus) are poly-skilled; along with the religious portion of their job, they are also highly skilled in making specialty beer and have done so since 1295. The Abbey beer that Augustijnen… Continue Reading →

Some yummy food… and then back to Paris!

The food in Beligum is amazing; but, the thing that really stands out is the culture and mindset that sits behind it. I was given one insight that has since changed my entire perspective around food. In NA, we tend… Continue Reading →


Built between 1220-1250, Saint Nicolas was built in honour of the patron saint of sailors, merchants, and children. Funding for the church came from the first two: sailors and merchants. Typical to Belgium, it was build using blue-grey Scheldt rock… Continue Reading →

Heaven and Hell

In Patershol, an area in Ghent known for it’s tiny streets, old buildings, and great restaurants, you’ll find two buildings that the people of Ghent call “heaven and hell.” I’m not sure the reasoning behind the naming, they were pointed… Continue Reading →

The Belfort of Ghent

There are two buildings that make up the Belfort. Firstly, there is the old Belfry Tower. Construction started on this structure in 1314 and continued though many community upsets (war, plague, politics) to be completed in 1380. From the Belfry,… Continue Reading →

Gravensteen Castle

We’d only been in Ghent for half and hour, with no knowledge of what to see or do, when we saw Castle Gravensteen poking up above the buildings in Graslei and Korenlei. And, because I’m not able to resist a… Continue Reading →

Geeraard de Duivel Steen

Between St. Bavo Cathedral and the Bisdomkaai is the Geeraard de Duivelsteen, known in English as the house/castle of Gerald the Devil. A plaque near the building says, Threatening, robust. Somewhat sinister even. Yet the devil never lived here. Gheeraert… Continue Reading →

The Lamb of God

Call it what you want: the Lamb of God, the Ghent Altarpiece, Het Lam Gods, or the Adoration of the Mystic Lamb; but, what it is is one of the world’s most significant paintings… that no one knows about. This… Continue Reading →

Saint Bavo Cathedral (Sint Baafskathedraal)

Researching the history of Saint Bavo Cathedral is like peeling an onion that becomes more complex, detailed, and varied as you remove each layer. I doubt you could have a church this old in Belgium without it having an incredible… Continue Reading →

The River Leie

We partook in a boat tour on our last day, which in hindsight would have been better suited for the first day so we had a good foundation from which to explore the city. But, we were looking for a… Continue Reading →

Ghent, Graslei, and Korenlei

Ghent is a lot of things: a university city, a port, a World War I/II survivor, a popular festival destination, and at one point it was the second largest medieval city after Paris. The later is likely because the city… Continue Reading →

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