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St. Bavo's Cathedral (Sint-Baafskathedraal) Tours

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2,112 Reviews
St. Bavo's Cathedral (Sint-Baafskathedraal)
Fronted by a Romanesque, baroque and Gothic facade, Ghent’s cavernous cathedral serves as a repository for a valuable collection of art treasures, including works by Rubens and Laurent Delvaux. Its showpiece attraction is the Van Eyck brothers’ world-renowned 24-panel altarpiece, The Adoration of the Mystic Lamb

The Basics
As the holder of one of the most significant and influential works of Northern Renaissance Art, St. Bavo's Cathedral (Sint-Baafskathedraal) is the first port of call for many visitors to Ghent. The cathedral is a common stop on guided day trips from Belgium’s capital, Brussels, and is commonly combined with a trip to the UNESCO-listed Belgian city of Bruges. Tour guides are not allowed to talk inside the chapel, so visitors normally explore independently. Audio guides help explain the various panels of the painting to visitors. 

Things to Know Before You Go
  • The cathedral is a pilgrimage site for art enthusiasts. 
  • The altarpiece underwent a painstaking restoration process beginning in 2012, with the panels having been restored to their original glory.
  • Wheelchair users may need assistance at the entrance, which is sloped. The Adoration of the Mystic Lamb is accessible, though the crypt, chapels, and choir aisle are not. 

How to Get There
Ride the tram (1, 2, or 4) to Korenmarkt. From there, it’s less than a 5-minute walk to Sint-Baafsplein square where the cathedral is situated. The Duivelsteen tram stop (served by lines 1 and 4) is also just a few minutes’ walk from the cathedral. 

When to Get There
Arrive at least 30 minutes (ideally more) before closing time, as visitors are required to leave the chapel in which The Adoration of the Mystic Lamb is situated 15 minutes before closing time. Note that between noon and 1pm every day, the panels of the Van Eyck altarpiece are closed allowing visitors to see only the restored exterior panels. 

Appreciating Art at St. Bavo’s Cathedral
Art aficionados will be impressed by the quality of the artworks, carvings, memorials, and tombs on display at St. Bavo Cathedral. Among the most important pieces are The Conversion of Saint Bavo in the Rubens Chapel, the Calvary Triptych by Justus van Gent, the baroque-style high altar, and the exquisite marble-and-oak rococo pulpit by Laurent Delvaux. 

Of course, the star of the show is The Adoration of the Mystic Lamb, which was begun by Hubert van Eyck and finished by Jan van Eyck in 1432. Over the years, many of the painting’s panels have been replaced, removed, and even stolen, though almost all—bar De Rechtvaardige Rechters (The Just Judges) which remains at large—have been recovered and restored.  
Address: Sint-Baafsplein, Gent, Belgium
Admission: Varies
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8 Tours and Activities to Experience St. Bavo's Cathedral (Sint-Baafskathedraal)

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Ghent Walking City Tour

Ghent Walking City Tour

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Forget about unprepared guides, huge groups, last minute cancellations ... Hire the professionalism of Niceday tours for a minimum price, FROM € 10 PERSON. Our guides explain the interiors of the churches, talk about art and history and discover the culture and secrets of the "Jewel of Flanders”. You will also get some incredible city tips about where to taste the typical Flemish food or have a Kwak beer in the "shoe bar" Dulle Griet.
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Private 8-hour excursion to Ghent and Antwerp from Brussels with Hotel Pick Up

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Bruges and Ghent are two charming, small towns in Belgium, each just a short train ride away from Brussels. In a perfect world, Bruges and Ghent each deserve their own day for exploring. However, if you are short on time, you can visit Bruges and Ghent in one day. Namur is the capital city of the Wallonia region of Belgium. At the confluence of the Meuse and Sambre rivers is the Citadel, a medieval fortress with 7km of underground passages, gardens, views and a golden statue of a giant turtle. In town, the Felicien Rops Museum focuses on the works of this 19th-century, Namur-born erotic artist. The baroque St. Loup Church has marble columns and a richly carved ceiling.
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Discover historical + authentic Ghent & taste world-famous Belgian chocolate

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Come with me for a walk through the city center of Ghent and discover some interesting places. We stroll through interesting buildings - young and old - such as St. Bavo's Cathedral where the world famous Lamb of God is kept, the belfry with its dragon, the old port that was built in the Middle Ages, and so much more ... We discover the enormous tradition of 'the Burgundian way of life' with a large number of Flemish specialties such as the enormous range of beers, chocolate and of course the Belgian waffles!
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Private 10-hour Tour to Ghent and Bruges from Brussels with Hotel Pick Up

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Bruges and Ghent are two charming, small towns in Belgium, each just a short train ride away from Brussels. In a perfect world, Bruges and Ghent each deserve their own day for exploring. However, if you are short on time, you can visit Bruges and Ghent in one day. We visited Bruges and Ghent in one day from Brussels. It’s a long, busy day, but we loved it. For the best experience, you need to get an early start. Bruges, the more popular of these two towns, tends to get very crowded midday. To avoid spending your valuable time in line, get to Bruges in the morning. On this day trip, you can stroll fairytale streets, dine on waffles and chocolate, take in the view from two belfries, go on a canal cruise, and visit an ancient castle. Here is our exact itinerary through Bruges and Ghent. Enjoy!
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Bicycle tour in historic Ghent

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Ghent viewed differently! Cycling through Ghent. It is the way to discover the lively city. A nice extra for your day in Ghent or to make a weekend away even more fun. Our bike tours take you to surprising places and parks in the city. You will experience a very nice mix of history, culture, flashy street art and impressive architecture.
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Walking food tour: Introduction to Ghent through food

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Keen to discover Ghent in a unique way? Want to do something a little bit different? Curious about some history and the diverse tastes Ghent offers? Welcome on our 2 hour exploring tour in our favourite city to hear the tales and tickle your taste buds. Examples of our tasters are cheese, chocolate, charcuterie, beer, traditional Ghent sweets and bread to name a few. These are EXAMPLES ONLY as we change the tasters regularly so that they are never the same. We team you up with a local guide who will look after you and give the best Ghent has to offer. ***IMPORTANT - PLEASE READ BEFORE YOU BOOK*** -Our standard tour is in English. -Please inform us about any allergies/intolerances/special diet. -Bookings shall be made at least 48 hours in advance so our partners can be prepared for your visit. We cannot guarantee acceptance for last minute bookings. -Min. 2 people -Private bookings possible (1 person or groups >15) -Please get in touch if you want to bring children.
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Running + Dancing = Rancing Ghent

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Rancing is a really fun way to explore a new place. You run (or walk) to get from A to B, but at a very gentle pace and you make different dance stops. The dance is freestyle, but your guide can show some moves if you like. Dance breaks also allow you to get some facts of Ghent and give you a chance to ask questions. We love to dress up and recommend guests to do the same as it contributes to the good vibes :) Everyone is welcome! ***IMPORTANT*** -Please check availability before you book. -Min. 2 people -Private tours possible. -Bookings shall be made min. 48 hours in advance. -For last minute bookings, please get in touch. -Tours are never the same. The landmarks pointed out are examples only and we will finish at a different location than the starting point.
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Full-Day Private Highlights and Hidden Gems of Ghent Tour

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Ghent is both a historic gem rich in history and architecture and a vibrant, innovating student city. This tour is for those that want to get to know these many diverse sides. The tour covers both the highlights and many hidden gems. Medieval history and architecture with castles, belfry, churches, guild halls, abbeys and merchants’ and patricians’ houses. Repurposed industrial structures and the monumental buildings of the socialist movement from the 19th and early 20th centuries. Picturesque neighbourhoods and photogenic bridges over one of Ghent’s rivers or canals. 13th century beguinages (closed community formerly inhabited by a movement of pious laywomen) and 21st century modern structures. Disappeared abbeys and palaces. University buildings and many students. Ghent has so much to offer and your local guide would love to show it to you!
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Frequently Asked Questions

The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What's the best way to experience St. Bavo's Cathedral (Sint-Baafskathedraal)?