You might have spotted these serene rafts drifting by on the rivers of Ghent – they’re run by Vlot Gent. And the thing I like most about them is that they are totally peaceful, unlike the other motorboats that look cool from the riverbanks but are pretty difficult to have a conversation on. These vlots are run on solar and wind energy and are completely environmentally friendly, which is another bonus. Of course, they are slower than the motorised boats, and this took us a bit of time to get used to, but once we did, we could have sat there all day.
When booking your vlot (it literally means ‘float’ in Dutch), you have to choose which area of Ghent you’d like to explore – the southwest or northeast. Only the southwest is available for smaller groups of 4 people, but groups of 6 or 8 people can book either.
You get your vlot for 2, 3 or 4 hours, or the whole day, and you set sail from either Stropkaai or Keizerpark. In 2 hours we were able to get from Stropkaai to the Ajuinlei and back but you often see the vlots along the leafy Coupure if there’s more time.
I would definitely book at least a week in advance as the fleet is quite small.