Steen Castle

Het Steen was home to the Maritime Museum for many years. Now that its collection has been moved to the Museum aan de Stroom (MAS), HETPALEIS and the city of Antwerp have reopened this legendary building as a ‘question centre’ for visitors (and anyone looking for answers), young or old, aged six years or over.

Het Steen is Antwerp’s oldest building. It lies on the Scheldt near the former peninsula known as ‘De Werf’ (the Yard). The first settlement appeared on De Werf, with earth ramparts, in the 9th century. A fortress was created in this way. In the late 12th or early 13th century, stone fortifications were built here, as well as Het Steen, one of the fortress’s three gatehouses. Het Steen was extensively rebuilt under Charles V, in the early 16th century. The difference of colour can still be seen on the façade.
 
Until 1823 Het Steen was used as a prison. After briefly serving as a residence, a sawmill and a fish warehouse, it was used as a museum from 1862: initially as a Museum of Antiquities, and then as the National Maritime Museum from 1952 to 2008. You can now admire the collection of the latter museum at MAS | Museum aan de Stroom.

Children aged 6 to 12 years are the guests of honour in HETSTEEN these days. They can attend workshops there with their school class or in their free time, with or without their parents. The theme for the period 2014-2016 is 'TIME'. During these workshops, children get to grips with philosophy, science and art. Through these disciplines, they consider various aspects of time: measuring time, holding onto time, fast versus slow, old versus young, and so on.
 
Old and young are welcome in HETSTEEN’s child-friendly meeting space: you can drink a hot chocolate there as you admire the view of the Scheldt, or enjoy a home-made sandwich and read the newspaper.

During the summer, HETSTEEN sets up its outdoor summer bar. Everyone is welcome: children can have fun in a great, safe playground by the edge of the Scheldt. There is a large sandpit and water play facilities. Adults can laze in the shade of the tree or soak up the sun in beach chairs. Cool drinks and ice creams complete the picture.

Contact

Steenplein 1
Antwerpen

http://www.hetpaleis.be/over-ons/hetsteen/contact/

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