What to See in Ghent

Gravensteen Castle

Gravensteen Castle, also known as the Castle of the Counts, is one of the most popular landmarks in Ghent. It was built in the 12th century and was used as a residence for the Counts of Flanders. Today, it is a museum that showcases the history of the castle and the city. Visitors can explore the castle's dungeons, armory, and torture chamber, which provides a glimpse into medieval times.

St. Bavo's Cathedral

St. Bavo's Cathedral is another landmark that is worth visiting. It is a Gothic-style cathedral that was built in the 14th century. It is famous for its stunning interior, which includes the altarpiece, "The Adoration of the Mystic Lamb," by the brothers Hubert and Jan Van Eyck. This masterpiece is considered one of the most important works of art in the world.

The Belfry of Ghent

The Belfry of Ghent is a bell tower that dates back to the 14th century. It is 91 meters tall and has 54 bells that chime every quarter of an hour. Visitors can climb to the top of the tower to enjoy a panoramic view of the city.

The Graslei and Korenlei

The Graslei and Korenlei are two quays in Ghent that are lined with historic buildings. They were once used as a trading center for grain and other goods. Today, they are popular tourist attractions, where visitors can enjoy a walk along the river and admire the beautiful architecture.

Bridges of Ghent

The inspiration for WIS23’s theme, ‘Building Bridges toward Excellence,” there are romantic bridges scattered throughout Ghent’s waterways. Including St Michael's Bridge, Grasbrug Bridge, and Vleeshuisbrug, these scenic spots are famous for their majestic skyline backdrops.


The headquarters for the World Incubation Summit 2023 is a landmark in and of itself. WIS23 will be the first international gathering to take place in this historic building that was once an indoor circus turned automobile showroom. Recently restored with loving detail, Wintercircus is next to the Ghent Library, home to our hosts imec and imec.istart.

For WIS23 delegates, Ghent is a city with a rich history and culture as well as a destination for innovation. Its landmarks, including Gravensteen Castle, St. Bavo's Cathedral, the Belfry of Ghent, and the Graslei and Korenlei, provide a glimpse into the city's past and are must-see attractions for anyone visiting the city.



Top Ranked Award

Livestream Part 1
World Rankings
24 January 2023

Anyone is welcome to register to attend Part 1, a livestream event announcing the UBI Global World Rankings of Business Incubators & Accelerators 2021-2022. Streaming live with imec and imec.istart
from Ghent, Belgium



In-person Part 2
Networking & Gala
14-17 May 2023

Part 2 is an invitation only, in-person, 4-day event focused on networking, interactive learning, and featuring a gala evening, inspiring speakers, and much more! Hosted by imec and imec.istart in Ghent, Belgium



Two great events
creating impactful collaborations

WIS Part 1 is free online and open to anyone interested in the global innovation ecosystem! WIS Part 2 is a physical event focused on business incubators and accelerators making outstanding contributions to the global innovation ecosystem


imec and imec.istart partner with UBI Global and Global Inovation Studios to announce the World Ranking of Business Incubators and Accelerators 2021-2022

“Impact innovation emerges anywhere around the globe. By connecting to other relevant innovation ecosystems, we can keep up with the fast-paced innovation and support our startups and partners in keeping a global perspective. UBI Global is a pivotal player in building bridges to these global innovation ecosystems, and we are proud to bring these ecosystems together in Belgium at WIS23. Welcome to Ghent!”

-Sven De Cleyn
imec.istart Program Director

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