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Ghent ({{#invoke:IPAc-en|main}}; [ɣɛnt]; French: Gand{{#invoke:Category handler|main}} [ɡɑ̃]) is a city and a municipality located in the Flemish Region of Belgium. It is the capital and largest city of the East Flanders province. The city started as a settlement at the confluence of the Rivers Scheldt and Leie and in the late Middle Ages became one of the largest and richest cities of northern Europe with some 50,000 people in 1300. Today it is a busy city with a port and a university.

The municipality comprises the city of Ghent proper and the surrounding towns of Afsnee, Desteldonk, Drongen, Gentbrugge, Ledeberg, Mariakerke, Mendonk, Oostakker, Sint-Amandsberg, Sint-Denijs-Westrem, Sint-Kruis-Winkel, Wondelgem and Zwijnaarde. With 240,191 inhabitants in the beginning of 2009,<ref name="BelMun2009">Statistics Belgium; Werkelijke bevolking per gemeente op 1 januari 2009 (excel-file) Population of all municipalities in Belgium, as of 1 January 2009. Retrieved on 2010-11-28.</ref> Ghent is Belgium's second largest municipality by number of inhabitants. The metropolitan area, including the outer commuter zone, covers an area of {{safesubst:#invoke:convert|convert}} and has a total population of 594,582 as of 1 January 2008, which ranks it as the fourth most populous in Belgium.<ref name="BelMun2008">Statistics Belgium; Werkelijke bevolking per gemeente op 1 januari 2008 (excel-file) Population of all municipalities in Belgium, as of 1 January 2008. Retrieved on 2008-10-19.</ref><ref name="BelMetr">Statistics Belgium; De Belgische Stadsgewesten 2001 (pdf-file) Definitions of metropolitan areas in Belgium. The metropolitan area of Ghent is divided into three levels. First, the central agglomeration (agglomeratie) with 278,457 inhabitants (1 January 2008). Adding the closest surroundings (banlieue) gives a total of 423,320. And, including the outer commuter zone (forensenwoonzone) the population is 594,582. Retrieved on 2008-10-19.</ref> The current mayor of Ghent, Daniël Termont, leads a coalition of the Socialistische Partij Anders, Groen and Open VLD.

The ten-day-long "Ghent Festival" (Gentse Feesten in Dutch) is held every year and attended by about 1-1,5 million visitors.


Ghent sections
Intro  History  Geography  Tourism  Economy   Transport   Sports  Famous people  International relations  See also  References  External links  

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