Hostel Review: Ghent- Hostel Uppelink

For nearly our entire stay in Ghent, we were met with surprised congratulations for making the trip. Apparently, tourists tend to overlook the city in favor of Bruges and Antwerp.

It’s hard to imagine why- most of the city’s historic architecture is well preserved and restored and frankly stunning to walk around in.

Funnily enough, during my research for Ghent, I’d started getting targeted Instagram reels for Hostel Uppelink at just about the same time that our pre-booked Ghent Airbnb host started acting suspiciously- asking for additional payments, and communicating outside of the Airbnb app. Rather than putting ourselves in a potentially dangerous scenario, we simply cancelled the Airbnb and booked a stay at Hostel Uppelink for our nights in Ghent instead. Always listen to your gut!

Although we’d been avoiding hostels during this particular trip, the rave reviews and incredible views were a huge draw. I’ll admit it- I got influenced by the Reels!

Hostel Uppelink is located in a gorgeous historic building just at the edge of Ghent’s historic district. This means that we were able to take public transportation over to the building, but we overlooked the river Leie and the car-free city center. The location made it easy to get pretty much anywhere in the city.

Since we’d been hooked by the Reels, we knew to book the “Small 3 bed private room with special view”, and since there was only two of us, we paid for the third bed to make it a private experience. Since the room is really quite small, we were also pleased to be able to use the empty third bed as extra storage space.

Right outside of our window, we had a truly spectacular view of the “three towers of Ghent” across the canal- and it was worth every penny! Waking up and falling asleep to this view was such an incredible experience, especially around the winter holidays with the Christmas lights decorating the city.

We were visiting in December so we spent a lot of time playing games in the huge historic common area, which also overlooked the canal and gorgeous historic center. There are a selection of board games available to borrow- though Carcassonne was our game of choice. I’d also purchased some Belgium themed cards to play on travel days and was entertained to see our hostel on one of the cards!

The common area also has a kitchen area and a stocked bar manned by the friendly staff, so it’s a popular place to hang out- though keep in mind that the common area and reception are closed around midnight.

A simple breakfast is served here in the morning, and we were always able to fill up on muesli and hard boiled eggs for our days of exploring before leaving for the day so I’d definitely recommend booking an option with included breakfast.

Although the common area is open for visitors, a digital key accessible from your smartphone enter the sleeping area and the room itself. We’d make a competition of opening the door before one another on our way in from the city, since we’d sometimes find ourselves struggling to unlock the door with our frozen phones and fingers.

My main gripe with this hostel was that the bathrooms and showers were shared throughout the building- the building was so old that private bathrooms were simply not possible. While I think there are an endless number of benefits of staying in hostels, shared bathroom facilities are not one of them. I’m spoiled now and really prefer the convenience and privacy of an ensuite bathroom.

While I wouldn’t recommend this hostel for everyone, all in all, I felt that the stunning view of the city more than makes up for the quirks of staying in such a historic building.

7 thoughts on “Hostel Review: Ghent- Hostel Uppelink

  1. Ghent is a wonderful city to visit, often overlooked. It has canals, beautiful buildings and streets, great food and of course, great beer.

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