Antwerp is proud of its public transport and rightly so, it is excellent. With trams, buses and an underground network it is easy to access every area of this beautiful city. Even the surrounding countryside is attractive, especially for any outdoor enthusiasts, as there are many cycling and walking routes laid out across this relatively flat area of land.
A highlight, that even if you are not arriving by train you should make the effort to see, is the central railway station. Dubbed the ‘railway cathedral’ and built back in 1895 this is widely regarded as the finest railway architecture in Belgium. The interior is designed in marble with an enormous staircase and is all covered with an huge glass and metal dome.
Ways to get around in Antwerp
One company, ‘De Lijn’, provide a comprehensive network of public transport throughout the city and the surrounding areas. You can travel in the buses, the trams and the pre-metro (the underground). Buy a ‘card’ for €9 before boarding or inside the buses and you can travel 10 times, if you don’t have a card you will pay more per journey (i.e. €2)
You will find that taxi prices are set but they can be a very expensive form of transport and are only available from specific locations (marked with orange signs) across the city. It is unlikely you will be successful trying to flag one down in the street.
Driving is not complicated in the city but there are quite a few one way streets which can make it a little complicated. There are also only a few ‘free’ parking spaces so be prepared to pay up to €2 per hour for street or underground parking.
There are a number of companies offering the chance to hire cycles in the town. Riding bikes around Antwerp is easy and positively encouraged with many roads providing cyclist specific routes and many places to lock up. Make sure you do secure your bicycle as it will be stolen if left unattended.
Most of the city is accessible on foot and is within a confined space that does allow it to be easily explored by walking but remember that the public transport is excellent so don’t wear yourself out too much unnecessarily.
Antwerp is proudly linked to the River Scheldt and as such boat tours are offered as a great way to see this impressive city from the water. There are numerous sailings by a number of operators so there is a great selection for any visitors.