The romantic, cozy harbor town offers a diverse range of culture, shopping and dining - everything and a little more what it takes for an eventful city break.
The must see of Antwerp
Of course, museums can be found in every metropolis. But Antwerp can boast something very special with the MAS (Museum am Strom). Only the architecture, which is reminiscent of cubes stacked on top of each other, is impressive. Inside, the amazement continues. The topics are varied and full of surprises. More than 500'000 exhibits tell stories about Antwerp, its harbor - the second largest in Europe - the people living here, about life and death and about gods of the upper and lower world with the result that all stories are masterly connected.
From the Groten Markt to the Vlaeykensgang
Typical of the Flemish cities is the big market place in the center. Antwerp is no exception. Surrounded by beautiful buildings, it is a magnet for locals and tourists. The Grote Markt began its history as a "forum" outside the medieval core. The place was first mentioned in 1310 as "Merckt". Around this time first fairs took place here. On the "Merckt" English merchants did business with Italians, Spaniards, traders from the northern German Hanseatic cities, southern German and Flemish. At the end of the 15th century, Antwerp's star finally came to the fore: The city replaced Bruges as the most important trading post in the old Netherlands.
Do you love the hidden, mysterious? Go in search of the entrance to the secret Vlaeykensgang. It was created in 1591 and connects the Hoogstraat, the Oude Koornmarkt and the Pelgrimstraat. You will find the entrance at Oude Koornmarkt 16. If you go through the gate, you will enter another time. In this alley once lived the poorest population of Antwerp and the guild of shoemakers, which was assigned the task of ringing the emergency bell of the cathedral. In this intimate atmosphere you will find good antique shops, art galleries and the exclusive restaurant Sir Anthony Van Dyck. In summer, the alley is also a popular place to listen to the carillon concerts.
The landmark of the city
Of course, a city trip to Antwerp should not miss the city's landmark: the Liebfrauen Cathedral. Almost 170 years was the construction period. When it was finally completed in 1521, it was with 123 tenants height the largest Gothic building in the Netherlands. They are among the lucky ones and after more than 20 years of restoration work they can admire the seven-aisled church in all its architectural splendor. For the greatest eye-catchers, the two works "Cruising Erection" and "Deposition from the Cross" by the painter Peter Paul Rubens provide.