In our previous blog post we talked about het Eilandje, Zuid and Zurenborg. Three very trendy and popular districts. However, Antwerp also has less known neighbourhoods who are worth a visit. In this article we will talk about Borgerhout, Diamond district and Sint Andries.
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Let’s start with Borgerhout. A Neighborhood that doesn’t enjoy the best reputation and that can be a bit rough around the edges. However, there bubbles a lot of creative energy here.
The residential area is located between the neighbourhoods Diamant, ‘t Noord and Zurenborg. The multicultural character of the district attracts many young people and creative people. The Turnhoutsebaan is ugly, but in the side streets you notice that the district has been growing in recent years. Besides the Turkish greengrocer and the Moroccan grocer, you will find nice restaurants, coffee bars and art galleries.
This district behind the Central Station has a bit of everything. You can find Turkish and Moroccan immigrants, young writers, young families, co-housing fans,… It is a cultural and social district, that’s for sure.
Some spots that you cannot miss: De Roma, a classic cinema from 1928 that was rescued by volunteers. An abandoned factory: Pekfabriek. This is a constant source of underground dance parties. Trixx: a concert hub that attracts acts from across the globe. Borgerwood: a festival that baths in culture and local talents.
During the day you should go to the Krugerplein, where you get a taste of the energy of this neighbourhood. Here are many deco bars that will feel like home.
Van Gogh spent a few months living in Borgerhout, and still, it is a popular neighborhood for young artists and writers.
Sint-Andries is located on the Scheldt quays, more specifically behind the Sint-Michielskaai and the Plantinkaai. The district is bordered by the Historical Centre in the north, the Theatre neighbourhood in the east and Het Zuid in the south.
Sint-Andries has known rough times. The streets around the Gothic St Andrew church used to be home to blue collar folks and Antwerp’s dockworkers. It was more like a small town within the city core. But those days are long gone. The Fashion Museum is the face of the district, and in the vicinity of Nationalestraat and Kammenstraat, vintage and haute couture go hand in hand. This district is constantly changing.
You can also go vintage shopping in the Kloosterstraat while still feeling the Sint-Andries’ village feeling. The charming streets are home to many lovely cafés and furniture stores.
During summer you find the Markt van Morgen here, which showcases local designers and good coffee.
Once, this neighbourhood was the poorest part of the city, nowadays it has been completely transformed. If you are still looking for something to do on the weekend, walking through this neighbourhood may be a good idea. Explore the district, the vintage shops and enjoy a warm cup of coffee.
The Diamond Quarter is a living reminder of Antwerp’s history as the unrivalled diamond capital of the world. The Flemish city has been known for its diamond trading and polishing since the 15th century. Even today, more than 80% of the world’s diamonds are transported through this area every year.
Antwerp’s Diamond quarter consists of many narrow streets and alleys. It is located near the Central Station and Borgerhout. Although you may think that the Diamond quarter is a fancy neighbourhood, you are wrong. It is in fact a bit boring with many office blocks and police checkpoints. However, a large part of the world’s diamond trade happens here.
Close to the Diamond district you will find Het Stadspark, one of Antwerp’s green lungs. This is a residential area, which is great for living as you are super close to the city centre yet far enough to enjoy peace and quiet.
As you can read, Antwerp is diverse and has a lot to offer. The city is almost always up to date with the latest trends. Because of this, you will find many different inhabitants, many young people but also families who like to stay in this city.
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