ANTWERP - NEIGHBORHOODS
The city center is where visitors and locals alike go to find the essence of Antwerp. The narrow, winding streets, many of them restricted to pedestrian traffic, are wonderful for strolling, the squares are full of charm, and the museums and churches are the pride of the city. Staying in the heart of Antwerp will allow you to be within walking distance of all the main tourist attractions of the, as well as having the convenience of being amongst many restaurants, cafes, bars, and shops.
The district of Borgerhout is the smallest district in Antwerp that sits behind the Central Station. The district doesn`t always get the best rep, but it does offer a fun eclectic energy with a little bit of everything. Borgerhout is home to Turkish and Moroccan immigrants, young boho writers and many young families. It is divided into two parts by a highway and the historical walls. The part inside those walls is intr muros (within the walls). It is build around a big boulevard, the Turnhoutsebaan. The Turnhoutsebaan is the biggest shopping street, offering both food and clothing. Intra muros is the young and trendy part, with a lot of so-called `hipster bars`. For a taste of some great energy during the day, head to the lively square Krugerplein, where you`ll find some vintage décor bars filled with local creatives. This district is considered party of the city and the historical center is even walkable.
Berchem is south of the Centraal Station, a few minutes away by train or tram, located along the old Grote Steenweg (Dutch for `Big Paved Road`) that has connected Brussels to Antwerp for several centuries. This is quite an ethnically diverse suburb. Berchem itself consists of three quarters, Oud Berchem, Groenenhoek and Nieuw Kwartier. Berchem is actually part of the city and the historical center is even walkable. The Driekoningenstraat - Statiestraat is the main shopping and commercial area of Berchem. The retail highstreet offers an interesting mix of Belgian, local, and international convenience and non-food stores.
Some additional neighborhoods include Middelheim, south of the city, above the tunnel for the expressway to Brussels. Het Zuid is a trendy area, a 15-minute walk southwest of the Grote Markt, close to the banks of the Scheldt. The Port of Antwerp stretches for miles to the north and northwest of the city, and you'll need your own wheels to visit this vast area. We recommend just checking the closest public transportation stop when staying at any of the outskirt hotels. Some of these hotels may be more cost effective, but you will always want to take into consideration the travel time.