Winter in Antwerp: Activities

From Saturday 9 December to Sunday 7 January 2018, Antwerp welcomes you in a magical winter wonderland. Discover the many fun activities.

Opening hours

General opening hours
Monday until Thursday: from 12 noon until 9 p.m.
Friday: from 12 noon until 11 p.m.
Saturday: from 11 a.m. until 11 p.m.
Sunday: from 11 a.m. until 9 p.m.
Special days
24 and 31 December: from 11 a.m. until 6 p.m.
 
Opening hours winter bar in Groenplaats and Steenplein:
Monday until Thursday + Sunday: until midnight
Friday and Saturday: until 1 p.m.

Christmas market

Buy artisan products and original gadgets from the 100 stallholders in the Christmas market, which winds its way from Groenplaats to Grote Markt and Steenplein. This year’s Christmas market offers a great mix of tradition and creative talent but it is also a fun place to enjoy a snack or a drink. There are plenty of options to choose from, including traditional winter delicacies such as mulled wine, donut fritters and bacon fries as well as vegetarian and exotic dishes, so you definitely won’t go hungry or thirsty.
 
 

Ice-skating rink

The ice-skating rink in Groenplaats offers 1,200 sq.m. of skating fun, making it one of the most beautiful ice-skating rinks in the Low Countries. Take a spin on the ice under Rubens’s watchful eye or enjoy a drink in the winter bar. There are penguin-shaped skating aids on hand, so even teeny tots can learn how to skate. Had enough skating for one day? Catch your breath on the winter bar’s terrace, with a stunning view of the cathedral while you sip a drink.
 
 

Tubing

We may not have mountains, but we do have slopes! So grab a tube and race down the track which has a view of the cathedral. The adrenaline rush is included for free!
 

 

Snowflake

A special place for special kisses. For centuries, people have attributed all kinds of magical powers to mistletoe. Kissing someone under the mistletoe will bring you love and happiness. The artist Jesse Agten turned this space into a special place to steal a kiss using stretch cloths. 
 
 

Giant Ferris wheel

Take a ride in the Ferris wheel, which rises 55 metres above Antwerp, and enjoy the magnificent sweeping views over wintery Antwerp. Whether you go during the day or in the evening, it is always a special experience. And don’t be deterred by the winter weather as the gondolas are closed so you can keep warm. 
 
 

Wishing wall

What do you wish your family, friends, neighbours and all the people of Antwerp for the New Year? Leave a wish on the interactive wishing wall. 2018 promises to be an amazing year.
 
 

Video projection 

The town hall in Grote Markt is currently undergoing a major renovation to make it ready for the future. Discover Antwerp as a diamond capital in a dazzling and magical video projection.
 
 

Winter fairground

Think fairground attractions are only for summer? Then think again! A winter fairground along the river, now that isn’t that amazing?
 
 

Singing Christmas tree

Never heard a Christmas tree sing before? Then now’s your chance to be moved by the angelic voices of children’s choirs. Have you got a favourite carol? 
 

 

Outdoor terrace

Why not unwind for a bit in the cosy outdoor terrace in Steenplein? Feeling a bit chilly? Then hop on one of the 'electric bikes' to make sure the Christmas tree lights don’t go out. 
 
 

Entertainment

Magical stilt walkers, cutesy mascots… you will run into plenty of fun characters in Antwerp in winter. 
 
 

Important dates

Saturday 9/12: Opening event
Every year, winter in Antwerp kicks off with a magical opening festival that attracts at least 100,000 spectators to the city centre.
 
Sunday 31/12: New Year’s Eve fireworks on the River Scheldt
It’s been a tradition for many years: a magnificent pyrotechnics display on the river, just before midnight. Because in Antwerp, we like to start the New Year with a bang.
 
Sunday 7 January 2018
Winter BBQ at the Scheldekaaien
 
Sunday 13 January 2018
Christmas tree bonfire on Linkeroever

 

Noortje Palmers

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