Antwerp is a multipurpose city in Belgium and the second largest in Belgium after Brussels. The city is known for its vibrant port which is among the largest in the world and ranks second in importance in Europe.
Apart from its economy, the city is also well-known for its culture and borrows heavily from some Spanish, French and Dutch influences. This is a city which you need to visit while in Belgium.
Here are the points of interest and things to do in Antwerp.
1. Visit The Antwerp Zoo
You can start off your adventure by exploring the Antwerp zoo which is one of the oldest animal parks in the world as it was established in 1843. The zoo is in the center of the city center hence it is easy to access.
The zoo has roughly 7000 animals belonging to over 950 species with some of them being rare endangered species. Among the animals, you get to see include American flamingos, king penguins, two-toed sloths, various reptiles such as snakes and lizards and also tree kangaroos. The zoo is full of sites from all parts of the world and is one of the most diverse animal parks you can come across.
2. Take A Trip Down Memory Lane At Ruben’s House
If you love history or art then Ruben’s house is one place you would want to visit if you are in Antwerp. The museum was once the home and workshop of Sir Peter Paul Rubens, a Flemish artist. The house has a design reflecting Rubens’ ideals and has some Italian influences in its architecture reflecting the renaissance era.
At the moment, Ruben’s house is the home to his various artworks and his contemporaries. There is also an archive form where you can learn more about the life of this talented artist. Among the works in the museum include Adam and Eve, Annunciation, and Saint Sebastian by Rubens and works by artists such as Titian, Jacob Jordaens and Frans Floris among others.
3. Explore The City On A Bike Tour
For a dose of fun, you can explore the city of Antwerp atop a bike on the various bike tours. You can go to the various biking centers around the city center and take either a solo or group tour with a guide showing you the wonders Antwerp has to offer. You can appreciate the architecture of the city with some building standing majestically since the 18th century.
4. Appreciate The Green Antwerp Botanical Garden
If you lobe nature you can create some time to visit the Antwerp botanical garden which is also a mark of Antwerp’s history as it was built in the early 18th century. The garden is home to over 2000 species of plants both indigenous and exotic. Entrance to the garden is free and is accessible throughout except on Sundays.
Antwerp should top your checklist on must-visit cities in Europe. It manages to be distinct owing to its culturally sound history which is evident in some of the city’s building most being maintained from the 18th century.