A beautiful port city adorned with sparking diamond stores like a bride decked in diamond accessories, a nice calm river side, shopping alley with huge buildings and big discounts. Ah! strolling through the city was a joyous feeling.

There are two types of trains that can take you to Antwerp.
IC- intercity are fast trains with limited stops.  duration : 40 mins
IR - interregional trains with many stops and is slow. duration: 1 hour.

We reached the Antwerp station at 11 AM and we visited the Info centre at the station to collect the maps. there were lotsa places of our interest. The station itself is one of the must see places as it has 4 levels with escalators connecting each. the huge tiled arch glass roof lights up the entire open area. The architecture of the building is a must see and the view is magnificent.

Once outside the station, we walked past the diamond stores and reached the main shopping street- Meir and entered the grand Stadsfeestzaal, shopping arcade. in the open area in the centre of the building is an eatery place- La Place.
We walked towards the grote market of antwerp and saw the giant hand in stone representing the Antwerp's "hand". Curbing a lot of temptation to enter the shops we walked straight into the grand place, crossed the cathedral and reached the triangular open area where a huge monument representing Brabo throwing the giant's hand into the Scheldt river, surrounding this are the guildhouses.
Along the banks of river Scheldt 
 You can take a ride around the city on the horse carriages starting from there.  We walked further north west and saw the river side. With the onset of spring it was quite a view to take in but I'm sure in summers it will be even wonderful with the sun glazing up on the river and all trees full with fresh leaves. strolled along the river side for a while, sat on the bench and refilled ourselves with some cookies and coke.

We walked further and crossed the river through a 500mtr long tunnel built 32 meters below the river. there are 2 levels of steep escalator you need to take before you reach the beginning of the tunnel. View of Antwerp standing on the other side of the river  is beautiful.

We walked back through the tunnel and walked past the KBC tower, the farmer's tower, the first skyscraper of European continent and again passed the shopping street of Meir. and this time couldn't resist and went inside and got deals on some items. Happy and content, we headed back to the magnificent station of Antwerpen and headed back home.

 A day trip to Antwerp was excellent and we could cover only 40 % of it. Yet to see the Diamond district, Zoo, aquarium and port.  So another saturday +sunny day  >>>>.Antwerp!!!

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