I wrapped up my Belgian adventure by spending 24 hours in Antwerp. The second largest city in Belgium and the diamond capital of the world! More than 70% of all diamonds in the world are traded right in Antwerp! Crazy. If I were to describe Antwerp I would describe it as Brussels “Cooler, more hip, older sibling”. I definitely recommend checking it out.
Now, I am more of a small “cute” town kind of girl. When traveling I tend to enjoy the quaint towns over big cities and that isn’t any different when it came to Belgium. I enjoyed my time more in Ghent and Brugge versus Brussels and Antwerp. BUT… that isn’t to say that I didn’t enjoy my time in Antwerp and that it isn’t charming in its own way. I chose to spend only 24 hours here, but you could easily spend more if you are a big city type of person! Luckily Belgium is an incredibly walk-able country and Antwerp is no exception. So pack some comfy shoes and get ready for a whirlwind 24 hours!
Start out your day at a coffee shop: Caffenation. From here hit the Grote Markt, Antwerp’s historic main square. Full of bars, restaurants, and plenty of people watching! It is beautiful, old, and extravagant… just the place to grab a glass of wine and sit down to daydream. A glass (or two/three/four) later get ready to empty your bank account by heading to Meir Street for world class shopping!
After your wallet is lighter and you’ve worked up an appetite sit down at Desire de Lille for some of the best waffles that (in my opinion), Belgium has to offer. That’s right… Belgium. Not Antwerp. I would say that Desire de Lille has the best waffles in the whole country. Yup, I said it.
Finally, before the sun sets head to the Museum aan de Stroom (MAS). Confession… I don’t actually know what the Museum holds, but I know that you can get on the rooftop for free and see spectacular views. So, sold! And if you haven’t had enough adventure and you want to keep going, head to Marnixplaats for fun nightlife and noodles at Lucy Chang’s.
And that my friends wraps up a whirlwind 24 hours. Antwerp, you are forever part of my most fond memories!