<p>What do you do if it’s raining outside but you don’t want to stay indoors? The Antwerp residents don’t let a shower or thunderstorm stop them from doing what they want to do. If you’re prepared to brave the bad weather, you will see that there’s plenty to keep you occupied, with an umbrella in hand, if necessary. We are happy to inspire you with sheltered and less sheltered tips.</p>
While the Tourist or Horse-Drawn Tram, the HopNstop or one of the bus excursions will take you along the main attractions, you can also discover Antwerp in a more original way: from a revamped 1963 Renault Estafette, in which driver Jamil will take you to the city’s most charming districts or via Tram De Lux, an old tram that was converted into a mobile café. This will take you around the city, keeping you dry, but providing you with a drink to quench any thirst.
Animal lovers can go to Aquatopia in Antwerp or the Zoo. Aquatopia is one of Europe’s largest underwater worlds, where thousands of fish and reptiles can be studied in their natural habitats. Antwerp Zoo boasts many outbuildings, but also spacious indoor cages where you can watch and photograph the animals. If, however, you happen to sit in the front row at the sea lion show, there is a chance that you get wet after all.
Sportopia is great for young people bursting with energy. This 5000 square meter indoor theme park will guarantee a great day for jumping, sliding, running, surfing, floating, dancing and laser shooting.
Fancy a movie or two? UGC and Metropolis offer film lovers a varied and comprehensive programme, multiple cartoons and the latest blockbusters. Lovers of Arthouse films, documentaries and ‘forgotten’ gems can visit Cinema South, Cartoon’s or the Klappei movie house.
Afterwards, you can have a chat over a drink in one of the many cafés that surround the cinemas or have a bite to eat at a nice restaurant.
Escape games are a fun and exciting way to get to know each other better, as well as Antwerp’s lesser-known neighbourhoods. Together with family, friends or colleagues, you will be ‘locked up’ and by solving a number of problems and finding different and unexpected visual clues, you can work your way out. The Room Antwerp, Antwerp Clue and Out of the Box Escape Games are some companies that are bound to give you many exciting moments.
A museum visit may sound a bit obvious and standard on a rainy day, but with a great variety of choice, Antwerp offers many cultural indoor activities. The MAS (Museum aan de Stroom), one of Antwerp’s busiest museums, is a definite must-see. You can also visit the Red Star Line Museum, Mayer van den Bergh, Rubens House, the Photo Museum or one of the other special museums.
Also, there is no shortage of art galleries in this city. De Zwarte Panter in the city centre is the oldest active gallery in Flanders and a magnet for artists, musicians, writers and art lovers alike. Design Center de Winkelhaak is located in one of the city’s most creative areas and there is regularly something new to discover in the exhibition space. Gallery Jamar exhibits contemporary art, ranging from James Ensor and Spilliaert, right through to Pierre Alechinsky, Jan Fabre, Marcel Broodthaers and Panamarenko.
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Shorter days and longer nights… Yes, autumn is here. But don’t worry, because in Antwerp we always make sure that every day and every night is simply unforgettable, with fun parties in unexpected places, concerts in palaces and exhibitions and culinary highlights in the city centre. And just when you think you’ve seen it all, we have another surprise up our sleeve for you. Book the Discover Antwerp package, spend the night in Antwerp and make the most of your stay with the Antwerp City Card that is included.
Belgian beers are world-famous, and Antwerp is an excellent place to improve your acquaintance with them. The De Koninck Antwerp City Brewery offers an ideal introduction to the world of beer. Het Pakhuis is another brewery where you can taste authentically brewed beer. In addition, there are plenty of typical ‘brown cafés’ which often have dozens and in some cases hundreds of Belgian beers on the menu. Examples include Bier Central, ’t Waagstuk, Paters Vaetje, de Kulminator and Gollem.
Set in the heart of the city’s fashion district, Antwerp’s fashion Museum is a dynamic and inspiring space with soaring ceilings and distinctive contemporary architecture. The building is also home to the Fashion Department of the Academy, and the relationship between the two institutions ensures that MoMu is very much a living museum with active links to contemporary fashion culture as well as historical expertise.
Antwerp is a pocket-sized city. Many of the attractions are within walking or biking distance of each other. Another way of getting around the city is on the trams and buses of De Lijn. Tip: buy your tram or bus ticket in a point of pre-sale (newsagent’s, supermarket, the vending machines at the various stops or in the visitor centres of Visit Antwerp), where tickets are cheaper.
This exhibition focuses on the rave culture of the 1980s and 1990s. The ideologies, the aesthetics, the link with electronic music, and the effect on the wider culture are covered. Works by graphic artists are placed in dialogue with different objects from the world of design, music and fashion.
You may feel like an intruder in this sacred, quiet space, but don’t worry – you are welcome. The Beguinage reminds us of a secret garden, nestled in the city centre next to the university, it is a surprise for those exploring. The tiny houses and charming St Catherine’s Church offers a haven of silence to busy souls, the beautiful garden, orchard and pond in the inner courtyard replenish and rejuvenate. Walk along the cobbled streets in this sixteenth-century garden of peace and quiet.
Check the Visit Antwerp Guide for more info about the nicest attractions, the best events, the most delicious Antwerp specialities, tips from Antwerp locals… In short, everything you need for an unforgettable visit to Antwerp. For sale at the visitor centres of Visit Antwerpen at Grote Markt and Central Station.
You will find street-side bicycle racks near public areas throughout the city. This makes it easy for cyclists to park and secure their bikes.
The Velo city bikes are a form of public transport, they take you anywhere you want to be and are easily combinable with train, tram and bus. You can only use the Velo bikes for short trips. That is why the first half-hour of every rental is included in the price. If you use the bike longer, then you pay extra. For bike trips of half a day or more we recommend that you rent a bike from a bicycle rental company.