Friday, August 12, 2005

Visiting Antwerpen

Last Tuesday I went to Antwerpen with Nizza and Syzygy. Because we live very close to the Belgium border, Antwerpen is about as far away as Utrecht, we could travel to Antwerpen by bus via Turnhout. It took us 2 hours to get to Antwerpen, but the entire trip with the public transport in Belgium only cost us 5 euro each! I must say some things are arranged a lot better in Belgium, and public transport (or at least bus-transport) is one of them. You buy a day-ticket at the bus driver for 5 euro and you can travel through Belgium all day long with anything from ‘De Lijn’, so that’s regional busses, local busses and even the tram. That’s the way to get people to use the bus in stead of the car! Somehow the politicians in the Netherlands don’t seem to get that. They really should follow Belgium’s example in this matter.

We had a wonderful day. The weather was nice, not too hot and no rain, so we didn’t really need the jackets we had brought with us. Antwerpen is a beautiful city with old buildings, streets and squares everywhere so just walking through the city is an experience. The central station, city hall, Our Lady's Cathedral, ‘de Grote Markt’ with the Brabo fountain, the 'Steen', it’s all gorgeous. There’s just so much to see in Antwerpen! And apparently we weren't the only ones who thought so, because the city was crawling with fellow Dutchmen.

We also went to the Pelgrom, a truly historical restaurant, to have a drink. The atmosphere was amazing, and it’s a very unique place for a restaurant. The restaurant is accommodated in an authentic 15th century cellar, so you’re underground and the only light is coming from the candles that have been placed on the tables. It certainly wasn’t as well lighted as it is in the picture, because your eyes really had to get used to the darkness. If you ever visit Antwerpen, you should really take a peek inside.

We walked so much that today, three days later, I still have aching muscles in my legs. :)


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