How to Spend 3 Days in Antwerp
Three days in Antwerp gives you ample time to enjoy the city’s highlights and still take in another European city. Whether you want to focus on Antwerp’s art scene or cross the border to Amsterdam, here’s how to make the most of three days in Belgium’s second city.
Day 1: History and Heritage of Antwerp
Devote day one to orienting yourself in the historic center of Antwerp, which is characterized by grand, baroque buildings and centered around Grand Market Square (Grote Markt). Jump aboard a hop-on hop-off bus for an overview of top Antwerp attractions, which include the Rubens House (Rubenshuis) and the De Koninck Brewery. An Antwerp City Card grants you free entry to both and includes unlimited use of public transport. Then, head to the Diamond District, home to one of the world’s largest diamond showrooms.
In the afternoon, go farther afield on a bike tour and indulge your sweet tooth with some of Belgium’s famous chocolate. Evenings in Antwerp are made for relaxing with Belgian beer and crispy french fries, which are typically covered in mayonnaise and ketchup. Get the inside scoop on Antwerp’s best eateries during an evening food tour.
Day 2: Crossing the Borders of Europe
Belgium is nestled between France, Germany, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg, making it an ideal launchpad for exploring the rest of Europe. You can opt to take the train independently or use a private transfer service, which comes with the freedom to customize your sightseeing itinerary. Choose to explore the Amsterdam Canal Ring, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the windmills of Zaanse Schans on a day trip to the Netherlands, or tour more of Belgium during a visit to the administrative capital of Brussels and the medieval town of Bruges, hailed as one of the prettiest places in Europe. Trips to Brussels take around half a day, making them the ideal choice for visitors with limited time.
Day 3: The Capital of Cool
Spend your final day exploring the neighborhoods that contribute to Antwerp’s reputation as the capital of cool. A great way to do this is on a Segway tour, which provides safe and speedy travel between dispersed sights. Zoom along the banks of the Scheldt River, stopping to photograph the ultramodern Courts of Law, and end in the trendy neighborhood of Zuid, home to some of Antwerp’s most prestigious art museums; enjoy 50% off admission with an Antwerp City Card. Dedicate an hour to exploring the Museum of Contemporary Art Antwerp, where you’ll also find a rooftop restaurant and an art-house cinema. Toast your final evening in Antwerp with a pint of Belgian beer on a beer tour, which provides local insight into some of the city’s best nightlife venues.