Favourite Destinations (Antwerp)
Explore the port city of Antwerp
Combining the debauchery of a weekend break in Amsterdam, the culture of a city break in Paris, this small cultural capital boasts an inviting café culture and a bar scene that encompasses small-town friendliness and the with the impressive architecture of Northern Europe. The Grote Market square in the centre displays idyllic Dutch architecture, the kind that is featured on postcards and the Carolus Borromoeus church around the corner is one of the most grand in Europe, ornately decorated with fine art and lavish gold engravings.
Antwerp was one of the first truly international cities in the early modern period and acted as a middleman for the trade of wool from England, sugar from Spain and Portugal and spices from the orient. It also served as a home for bankers who lent out of Antwerp. As such the city has a deeply ingrained attitude of acceptance and appreciation of different cultures. A port city on the northern border near the Netherlands, the city of Antwerp is famous for its diamond trade and jewellery shoppers will find one of Europe’s best selection of diamonds to admire. The city is also an up and coming center of designer fashion, bringing in international recognition for newer brands.
If you're seeking a taste of the city’s notable nightlife scene, look for something close to Paeters Vaetje, located at Blauwmoezelstraat 1. This superb locale is right next to the Cathedral, and boasts over a hundred different beers (remember, you’re in Belgium!). After you’ve primed yourself at a few of the bars, the nightclubs typically open up between 1am and 3am and the best place to start out is the popular De Keyserlei street before making your way back home in the early hours! Antwerp airport makes travelling straightforward, so you can arrive easily in this fantastic city. Why not visit Brussels the capital of Belgium as well?
Crazy about beer
In Antwerp they are completely beer crazy, so much so that they have not one but two major solely beer themed events. The first and biggest one is the Bierpassie Weekend, it is a three-day long event which has grown every year for the past two decades. There are now about 200 of the world’s finest beers for you to try along with all sorts of delicious food to accompany them. Then the second one is a smaller but not any less popular event called Modeste Bier Festival, true to its name which means ´modest´ the festival invites the smaller breweries alongside members of the Belgium Family Brewersto to showcase their tantalizingly tempting beers. However, this event gets even better because there is also a variety of cheese stalls, a cheese shop and activities that you can take part with. Is there anything better than some beer and cheese in a gorgeous country.
Life is a zoo
The zoo is Antwerp was opened to the public in 1843 and is the oldest zoo in the world, however don’t let this deter you because while it may be the oldest it is equipped with world class modern and state of the art enclosures and breeding programmes. It makes for an amazing day out with lots of ridiculously adorable animals that you wish you could hide in your handbag and take home as well as lots of truly fascinating animals, in total the zoo is home to more than 6,000 specimens and 1,160 species. It is also home to some of the rarest mammals in the world like the white rhinoceros, but also is very well known for their too sweet to be real loved up koala couple that live together in their very own cosy little thatched cottage. They have also recently added a new reef environment to the zoos aquarium which gives you even more to explore in this magical place full of gorgeous animals.