|Cathedral of Our Lady|
We stayed in a self-catering apartment overlooking Vrijdagmarkt, or 'Friday market'. Unfortunately we weren't there on a Friday, so missed the market, but the square was a microcosm of Antwerp life. A mix of cafes, residential apartments and one of Antwerp's major museums, daily life went on under our windows. Most striking of all, life cycled by under our windows - the square was criss-crossed by cyclists at all times of day. Early morning workers, the husband on the baguette run for breakfast, children being taken to nursery on the back of bikes, business people with laptop cases strapped on the carrier, students pedaling dreamily towards lectures.
Below, one of my few words of Dutch, but an important one: 'winkels' means 'shops'. This is Antwerp Central Station - a cathedral of rail travel from the turn of the last century at ground level, with two futuristic underground levels dating from 2007.
More transport - a typical Belgian bike.
|Typical Belgian bike|
If you're lucky enough to visit Antwerp, do consider staying at Aplace apartments. Decorated in quirky vintage style complete with vinyl records and a ferocious coffee machine which we failed to master despite looking up a tutorial on daughter's phone, our apartment was an absolute delight. (Edited to say that the coffee machine failure was all ours - we are not a coffee machine family at all. Our most technical piece of coffee apparatus is like the yellow 'Koffie-Automaat' in the shot below.)
|Aplace living room|
|Aplace dining area and view to square|
|More my style|