Dominating the Grote Markt, the enormous reconstructed Lakenhalle is one of Belgium’s most impressive buildings. Its 70m-high belfry has the vague appearance of a medieval Big Ben. The original version was completed in 1304 beside the Ieperslee, a now covered-over river that once allowed ships to sail right up to the Lakenhalle to unload their cargoes of wool. These were stored beneath the high gables of the 1st floor, where you’ll find the unmissable In Flanders Fields Museum.
To climb the Lakenhalle's tower, pay an extra €2 when entering the museum to have your electronic bracelet suitably charged to get you through the barrier.
Appended to the Lakenhalle’s eastern end, the working stadhuis was reconstructed in 1969, partly to the original 1619 design.