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Address: Mariastraat 38, Bruges 8000, Belgium
Phone Number:
+32 50 44 87 11
09:30 - 17:00
Closed now
See all hours
Tue - Sun 09:30 - 17:00
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours

Sint-Janshospitaal owns six masterpieces by the Flemish primitive artist...

Sint-Janshospitaal owns six masterpieces by the Flemish primitive artist Hans Memling, as well as many religious paintings and sculptures. Objects of applied art, such as furniture, silverwork, medical instruments, reliquaries, archive documents, and apothecary pots reflect 800 years of care.

Sint-Janshospitaal is one of the oldest preserved hospital buildings in Europe. In the museum, you can learn more about hospital life in the past and how the wards would have looked then. Furniture, paintings, sculptures, silverware, and pewterware are the silent witnesses of the care for bodies and souls that took place in this hospital through the centuries. The building’s supporting framework is also unique and is one of the oldest and largest in Europe. The old apothecary’s and herb garden is also well worth a visit. In the hospital chapel, the focus is all on the work of the most famous of the Flemish Primitives: Hans Memling. This painter lived and worked in Bruges in the 15th century and created his most important masterpieces here, including the famous Shrine of St Ursula, which was painted specifically for Sint-Janshospitaal.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 895 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 221
  • 175
    Very good
  • 80
  • 32
  • 9
Memorable for the art and history

The displays on 500 year old medical practices were very interesting as was the art. Worth at least an hour.

4 of 5 bubblesReviewed 12 January 2017
Aurora, Illinois
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895 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 517: English reviews
Level Contributor
17 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 February 2017 via mobile

A few displays of medical instruments and a picture of the ward were interesting, and the pharmacy was amazing. I was disappointed this was all there was left of the medical history. Otherwise it's basically another church and art gallery. Although the comedy act in the chapel (special for Valentine's Day apparently) was fun, and the temporary modern day art... More 

Thank Khyfffdtb
Lancaster, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
32 reviews
19 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 January 2017

Although the big attraction in Bruges is Bruges (the wole place is great) this is the one MUST see attraction. Their collection of painting by Hans Memling is probably the best in the world (he was a local boy) and many of the works in the collection were painted for the Hospital. The triptych on the altar is incredible as... More 

Thank Allen M
Chattanooga, Tennessee
Level Contributor
32 reviews
22 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 January 2017

I was not particularly impressed by the museum inside, but it wasn't a negative experience either. Would not consider must-see.

Thank Carson C
Perth, Australia
Level Contributor
41 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 January 2017 via mobile

My husband and I found this an interesting museum. It has some pretty cool art as well as old medicinal artefacts which were pretty disgusting! We were out if there within the hour I think.

Thank imogen210893
Aurora, Illinois
Level Contributor
333 reviews
138 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 116 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 January 2017

The displays on 500 year old medical practices were very interesting as was the art. Worth at least an hour.

Thank Blabbott
Nijmegen, The Netherlands
Level Contributor
567 reviews
562 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 103 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 January 2017

The St.-Janshospital is one of the few museums in Bruges where you can spend a full hour. The collection fits the history as a hospital, with all kinds of old medical instruments, but also religious paintings and relics. Don't forget the apothecary, in a room separate from the main part.

Level Contributor
131 reviews
58 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 January 2017

Do not miss this fascinating hospital. It is an eye opener as to how public spirited the inhabitants of Bruges were, so many hundreds of hears ago. The hospital catered mainly for spiritual rather than medical needs and medical knowledge was so limited, however the patients all had their own beds and were cared for as you can see in... More 

Thank GirdleTheEarth
Redditch, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
107 reviews
47 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 January 2017

very interesting visit here, some fascinating history and great paintings. well worth a few hours of your time and close to the church of our lady so you can see both in one visit.

Thank lambkin21
Leamington Spa, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
11 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 January 2017

I love museums. No, let's qualify that. I love GOOD museums, where interpretation ensures that even the seemingly most dull artefact is brought to life, given context and is presented in such a way that all types of people can enjoy it. So, I was excited at the thought of an afternoon by myself (wife & shops = several hours... More 

Thank neilgriffiths1066
Brisbane, Australia
Level Contributor
288 reviews
95 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 175 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 December 2016 via mobile

Is it a hospital museum or an art gallery or a historic museum? I left feeling ripped off by the €8 entrance fee. Perhaps we missed something but I was looking forward to a hospital museum buy found art, artefacts and a few signs about the hospital (in Dutch) all jumbled together. Not really worth the effort. There are better... More 

Thank Andrew G

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