Regional Overview

Medieval Innovation

Flanders is the only part of the Lowlands to have never been part of the Holy Roman Empire. Indeed, today it is also the only part of West Francia to never have reunited with France. This independence allowed the region’s cities to experiment and develop without the constraints of feudalism. In the Middle Ages, the cities of Bruges and Ghent were global centers of trade, and today this legacy is evident in the spectacular cityscapes of the region.

Regional Identity

What to Lookout For

  • Lowland Brick Architecture: A combination of soft ground and distant quarries made brick the favored material.
  • Flemish Gothic: The cultural proximity with France meant that the Gothic arrived early, though here it symbolized civic pride and not royal authority.
  • The Flemish Renaissance: The Flemish Renaissance flourished in an environment similar to Northern Italy. They would set the standards for much of Northern Europe.




Justin Bunch | CityscapeTravel My suggested travel destinations with the top three destinations highlighted.

What is Flanders?

Flanders ranks among Europe’s premier destinations for beautiful old towns and spectacular cityscapes. It combines a strong local identity with the desire and money to preserve some of Europe’s most extraordinary historical heritage. It also helps that Flanders has a rich cultural identity formed around its language, traditions, and food that offer a truly immersive travel experience.

Interactive Map

My Subjective Travel Rankings

To understand where the categories come from, see this article here.

8.8 / 10

The score is based on the following:

  • Accommodation: 10
  • Transportation: 10
  • Volume/Capacity: 7
  • Infrastructure: 10
  • Interactivity: 7

10 / 10

The score is based on the following:

  • Context: 10
  • Monuments: 10
  • Quality: 10

5.5 / 10

The score is based on the following:

  • Abstraction: 1
  • Tradition: 10


The Imperial Lowlands

A diverse land united only by geography

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