Antwerpen is a remarkably versatile and accessible city, with both offerings for couples, families, bachelor parties or your Father-daughter-day (Antwerp is one of Ella’s favorite places to go) – so here are my Antwerp tips.
Note: I am continually updating this list. Also, see my other city trip tips.
Antwerp– my favorite places to eat
Antwerp is home to some truly amazing restaurants. As Belgians love to go out for dinner … and lunch, make sure to make your reservation well in advance.
- Since being introduced by my good friend Herman Konings, Veranda has become one of my favorite restaurants. Amazing service and food for a very reasonable price.
- Cuichine has some amazing Chinese food with a twist.
- Joyau is a really nice French/Belgian restaurant in Antwerp (formerly known as Sensunik).
- The Jane is a Michelin 2-star restaurant and probably the best food experience I ever had. Its certainly not cheap, but worth every single penny. See my separate post on the full The Jane experience.
- Felix Pakhuis (near the MAS museum) is a nice place to have lunch or cocktails.
- Pizza del Popolo near Antwerp Central Station has been my favorite Sunday evening work base for some months. When sleeping at the Indigo Antwerp, I would go for an evening pizza there while getting some work done. Cheap, no-nonsense, but tasty pizzas and remarkably friendly staff.
Antwerp – my favorite places to go out for a drink
- BelRoy’s Bijou is one of the best cocktail bars in Belgium (actually 6 months after its opening in 2016, it was awarded “Best Cocktail Bar” of Belgium by Venuez).
- Dogma has some amazing cocktails as well.
- Cocktails at Nine is slightly hidden, but an amazing place for cocktails and bites (the meat platter is mightly fine).
Antwerp – my favorite things to do
- Antwerp Central Station is one of the most beautiful train stations in the world. Just stand there and be in awe of its beauty is a great day. If you have kids, the escalators are an amazing way to spend some time going up and down. And up. And down. And up.
- De Meir is Antwerp’s large shopping street.
- Next to Antwerp Central Station is the Antwerp Zoo. It is one of the oldest Zoos in the world and remarkably spacious if you consider it is right in Antwerp’s city center.
- Museum aan de Stroom (MAS) is an amazingly beautiful and versatile museum in Antwerp’s recently revamped Harbour area.
- During both summer and winter, Het Steen castle and the Steenplein at the Scheldt river have some amazing events: from a summer bar to a food truck festival and from parties to fancy fairs.
Antwerp – my favorite places to stay
- Indigo Hotels is one of my favorite hotel chains and they have a hotel very close to Antwerp Central station (with its bus, metro and tram connections to the rest of the city).
- Hilton has a relatively new Hampton by Hilton across Antwerp central station. I really like this as a base for my business trips as it is relatively affordable, has a free 24/7 coffee machine and is super close to the station, so I can pretty much literally roll out of my bed into a train to Amsterdam or another city in the morning.
- Hotel Riga is a really nice boutique hotel.
- If you can afford it, De Gulde Schoen, is an amazing boutique suite hotel near the Groenplaats.
Antwerp – my favorite places to get some work done
- Fosbury & Sons is a really really nice co-working space in Antwerp – designed by Léon Stynen in 1958, stripped down to its rough concrete bones and combined with wood, steel, glass, textiles, and lush greenery (no matter how cool you are, the building is cooler than you). If you’re there, say hi to my friends at Playco, a kickass design consultancy agency.