17 km (possibility to shorten to 9 km)
This cycling route gives you the opportunity to discover Ghent’s glorious industrial past by bike. You will cycle past no fewer than 18 industrial gems that are still an important part of Ghent’s industrial history today.
The cycling route starts at the former textile factory UCO Desmet-Guequier, where a cotton mill was built following the English example in 1905, and ends in Bandelierstraat, where courtyards shot up like mushrooms in the 19th century.
Ghent’s industrial history is also largely characterised by labour migration. From the 1960s onwards, many Turkish and North African migrant workers started working in the textile industry, for example in the textile factory UCO De Hemptinne.
Hungry or thirsty while cycling? No reason to panic! There are several great hotspots along the way where you can satisfy your hunger or quench your thirst.
Cathedrals of industry: cycling route
This cycling route takes you along the Ghent textile factories of the past. In the exhibition in the Industry Museum, photographer Alexander Dumarey shows 30 pairs of photos. You will discover whether the impressive factory buildings have stood the test of time, were demolished or given a different use.
This free cycling map is available in the tourist office and the Museum of Industry.
Don’t have your own bike?
Don’t worry! There are plenty of bicycle rental points in Ghent where you can very easily rent a bike.