Belgium making relaxing simple

belgium-holidays

Belgium is one of Europe's smallest nations, but also one of the most diverse and intriguing. Situated at the cross-roads of Western Europe, on the divide between the Germanic north and the Latin south, the Belgian territories have changed hands innumerable times over the centuries as feudal lords and warring nations vied for control of some of the most productive and cultured lands on the continent. The result is a modern, densely-populated patchwork nation filled with Medieval castles, stately 17th and 18th Century chateaus, Gothic and Romanesque churches, ornate formal gardens, vast forest parks, and numerous historical sites. Belgium also boasts one of the highest standards of living in the world, and the Belgian passion for the good life is reflected in its excellent cuisine and world famous beers and wines.

Belgium is formally divided into three autonomous regions: Flanders in the north, where the official language is Dutch, or Flemish; Wallonia in the south, where most people speak French; and the capital district of Brussels, which is officially bilingual but mostly French-speaking. Brussels is a modern cosmopolitan city that now also serves as the capital of the European Union. It has been an important centre of European culture for centuries, renowned for its museums, art galleries, and the 17th Century architecture of its historic city centre - as well as for its restaurants, cafes, pubs, and shopping. Daily life in Brussels has a relaxed and intimate feel, despite the city's somewhat dry reputation as a centre for commerce and government.

The enchanting and atmospheric city of Bruges is renowned for being one of the most beautiful in Europe - a labyrinth of narrow streets, canals and Medieval Gothic stone architecture. The ornate historic buildings of city centre date from the 13th Century, and give Bruges the appearance of a town from an impossibly romantic fairy tale. Among the most famous buildings are the Basilica of the Holy Blood, which houses a relic said to contain drops of the blood of Christ that were brought to the city by a mysterious saint, Joseph of Arimathea. The 13th Century Belfry in the main market square is the city's most prominent landmark - a steep and narrow staircase with 366 steps takes visitors to the top of the 250 foot tower for a breath-taking view of the city. Bruges is also home to many fashionable restaurants and pubs, and a vibrant modern night-life scene.

The Meuse river valley in the southern Wallonia region is one of Belgium's most important tourism areas, famed for its many historic towns and Medieval castles that line the scenic river banks. Motoring tours of the area often begin in the city of Liege, and head up the valley to Huy, Namur and Dinant. Boat tours along the Meuse and its tributaries are also possible. Belgium's heavily forested Ardennes area, along the border with France, is famed for its beautiful natural scenery and distinctive local cuisine, as well as its unique military history during the two World Wars of the 20th Century.




1929 Aarschot Hotels

'S Hertogenmolens Hotel

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Address
Demerstraat 1A
Price
from ?94.9573EUR
Guest Rating
Very good, 8.3
Reviews
Based on 149 reviews
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'T Buskruid Hotel

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Address
Dr Vanderhoeydonckstraat 64
Price
from ?72.5000EUR
Guest Rating
Very good, 8.1
Reviews
Based on 33 reviews
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't Hemelhuys Bed & Breakfast Hasselt

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Address
Hemelrijk 15
Price
from ?90.0000EUR
Guest Rating
Great, 9.4
Reviews
Based on 59 reviews
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'T Land Van Bornem

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Address
Kardinaal Cardijnplein 10-12
Price
from ?85.0000EUR
Guest Rating
Good, 7.5
Reviews
Based on 30 reviews
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't Oud Wethuys

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Address
Brugsestraat 2
Price
from ?125.0000EUR
Guest Rating
Normal, 6.7
Reviews
Based on 24 reviews
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'T Roodhof

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Address
Nieuwburgstraat 32
Price
from ?70.0000EUR
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Not rated, 0
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Based on 0 reviews
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't Solveldje B&B

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Address
Solveldstraat 6
Price
from ?EUR
Guest Rating
Very good, 8.3
Reviews
Based on 27 reviews
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't Wit Huys

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Address
Kleine Kerkhofstraat 133
Price
from ?143.6177EUR
Guest Rating
Great, 9.31
Reviews
Based on 48 reviews
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3 Paardekens Hotel

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Address
Begijnenstraat 3
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from ?EUR
Guest Rating
Very good, 8.1
Reviews
Based on 195 reviews
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A Cote du Cinquantenaire

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Address
139 rue du Cornet
Price
from ?84.1239EUR
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Not rated, 0
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Based on 0 reviews
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A L Oree Du Bois Apartment Bouillon

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Address
Rue De La Ramonette 3
Price
from ?65.0000EUR
Guest Rating
Great, 9.1
Reviews
Based on 32 reviews
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A-XL Flathotel

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Address
Rue de la Croix 45
Price
from ?65.0000EUR
Guest Rating
Very good, 8.13
Reviews
Based on 99 reviews
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A2 Bed & Breakfast Antwerp

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Address
Sint Paulusplaats 27
Price
from ?114.2647EUR
Guest Rating
Great, 9.2
Reviews
Based on 125 reviews
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Aan 't Eilandje

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Address
Klapdorp 28
Price
from ?59.0000EUR
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Not rated, 0
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Based on 0 reviews
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Aan Zee Hotel De Panne

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Address
Markt 6
Price
from ?78.0000EUR
Guest Rating
Very good, 8.5
Reviews
Based on 192 reviews
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Abberdeen Hotel Brussels

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Address
Rue Du Colombier N 4 Duivenkotstraat
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from ?EUR
Guest Rating
Normal, 6.8
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Based on 308 reviews
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Abeljano Bed & Breakfast Hasselt

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Address
Smetstraat 36
Price
from ?100.0000EUR
Guest Rating
Great, 9.5
Reviews
Based on 28 reviews
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Academie Hotel

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Address
Wijngaardstraat 7-9
Price
from ?53.7525EUR
Guest Rating
Very good, 8.23
Reviews
Based on 789 reviews
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Adagio Brussels Centre Monnaie

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Address
20 Boulevard Anspach
Price
from ?78.6275EUR
Guest Rating
Great, 8.87
Reviews
Based on 1180 reviews
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Admiraal Hotel

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Address
Staatsbaan 81
Price
from ?49.4989EUR
Guest Rating
Good, 7.9
Reviews
Based on 267 reviews
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The city of Brussels is over 1,000 years old (founded in 979 AD) and is Belgium’s capital city as well as the capital city of the European Union (EU) and serves as the economic and political administrative center for the European continent.  However, it is most renowned from a tourism aspect for the arts, cuisine, culture, and history.  In recent decades, there has been another tourist gem that Belgium has revealed and is a now a favorite of many international travelers as wells as the local residents. Street Market in Brussels For many visitors to the city, the heartbeat of Belgium is the numerous street markets that you can explore.  There is no end to the antiques, artwork, clothing, horticulture, and other household items well worth the price.  The city wrote the book on flea markets and street markets.  It’s just that simple.  But if you’re a shopoholic, this is a must-see attraction in Belgium. We have listed several of these markets below so that you have an idea of the markets that prior visitors to the city have oftentimes recommended because of the pricing and inventory that they carry: Grand Place One of the best markets for flowers and plants, Grand Place is open 12 hours a day from 8 am to 8 pm. Gare du Midi Considered the busiest and most famous street market in the entire city.  You can find everything here from clothes and flowers to some great household items.  The only drawback is that it is only open on Sunday mornings so expect it to be crowded. Place du Grand Sablon A hot spot for antique shopping and a huge assortment of books make this street market a must-see while venturing out in Brussels. Place Sainte-Catherine Alimentation (nourishment/nutrition) and floral products are what this market is best known for.  It is a biological market, meaning that it is controlled by biological agriculture). Place du Jeu de Belle A true flea market in the finest sense of the word, Place du Jeu de Belle is open 7 days a week – Mon. – Fri. 7 am to 2 pm, Saturdays and Sundays 7:30 am to 3 pm.  This is an antique venue with a garage sale format. Boulevard du Midi If you’re looking for second hand two-wheelers (bicycles and motor bikes) this is the street market for you. Place du Châtelain Only open on Wednesdays, this street market is still ranked the best of the best where cheese, wine, and other specialties are concerned.  But the locals and other tourists to the area will tell you that it is the atmosphere that makes Place du Châtelain that makes this visiting this market a priority.

Brussels has a variety of daily and seasonal markets and each neighbourhood has its own market day. Here is a selection of markets in the Brussels area. The Christmas Market is the largest in belgium stretching over 2 kilometres, with 240 chalets selling Christmas goodies, a huge ice-rink and a nightly sound & light show. Between the Bourse and the Fish Market the stalls offer a range of  festive goodies and local food and drink specialities. Whizz around the 60 metre ice rink and admire the huge Christmas tree and enjoy the nightly sound and light show in Grand Place. Brussels Monday Place du Jeu de Balle: Second hand and flea market, 07:00-14:00
Rue du Beurre: Art, artist and portrait market, 11:00-18:00
Place Ste-Catherine: Flower and food market, 07:00-17:00
Place Reine Astrid, Jette: Consumer goods and food market, 08:30-13:00
Place St Josse: General market
Le Miroir, Jette: Regional farm produce
Place Van Meenen: Fruit and vegetable market and organic produce, open 12:30-19:00 Tuesday Place Anneessens: Food market, 08:00-12:30
Quai des Usines 22-23: Early morning flower and plant market, 06:00-07:30
Place du Jeu de Balle: Second hand and flea market, 07:00-14:00
Grand'Place: Flower and plant market, 08:00-14:00
Rue du Beurre: Art, artist and portrait market, 11:00-18:00
Place Ste-Catherine: Flower and food market, 07:00-17:00
Place Reine Astrid,  Jette: Consumer goods and food market, 08:30-13:00
Le Miroir, Jette: Regional farm produce Wednesday Chaussée d'Anvers: Food market, 07:00-13:00
Place Chatelain: Food market including organic produce, 14:00-19:00
Place de la Monnaie: Organic food products, 09:00-14:00
Place du Jeu de Balle: Second hand and flea market, 07:00-14:00
Grand'Place: Flower and plant market, 08:00-14:00
Rue du Beurre: Art, artist and portrait market, 11:00-18:00
Place Ste-Catherine: Flower and food market, 07:00-17:00
Place Reine Astrid, Jette: Consumer goods and food market, 08:30-13:00
Place de la Roue, Anderlecht: General market
Place St-Lambert: General market
Le Miroir, Jette: Regional farm produce Thursday Quai des Usines 22-23: Early morning flower and plant market, 06:00-07:30
Place du Jeu de Balle: Second hand and flea market, 07:00-14:00
Rue du Beurre: Art, artist and portrait market, 11:00-18:00
Place Ste-Catherine: Flower and food market, 07:00-17:00
Place Reine Astrid, Jette: Consumer goods and food market, 08:30-13:00
Le Miroir, Jette: Regional farm produce Friday Place du Jeu de Balle: Food market, 16:00-21:00
Place du Jeu de Balle: Second hand and flea market, 07:00-14:00
Grand'Place: Flower and plant market, 08:00-14:00
Rue du Beurre: Art, artist and portrait market, 11:00-18:00
Place Ste-Catherine: Flower and food market, 07:00-17:00
Place Reine Astrid, Jette: Consumer goods and food market, 08:30-13:00
Place Roi Baudoin: General market
Le Miroir, Jette: Regional farm produce Saturday Musée de l'Air, Parc du Cinquantenaire: Old document market, on the first Saturday of the month 08:00-16:00
Rond Point Agora, rue du Marché aux Herbes: Art and craft market, 10:00-18:00
Place du Grand Sablon: Sablon antiques market, 09:00-18:00
Halles St-Géry: Art and craft market, 10:00-21:00
Quai des Usines 22-23: Early morning flower and plant market, 06:00-07:30
Place du Jeu de Balle: Second hand and flea market, 07:00-14:00
Grand'Place: Flower and plant market, 08:00-14:00
Rue du Beurre: Art, artist and portrait market, 11:00-18:00
Place Ste-Catherine: Flower and food market, 07:00-17:00
Place Reine Astrid, Jette: Consumer goods and food market, 08:30-13:00
Place St-Lambert: General market
Place St Josse: General market
Le Miroir, Jette: Regional farm produce Sunday Quai des Usines 22-23: Weekly market for second hand cars, mopeds, caravans and boats, 07:30-13:00
Gare du Midi, St-Gilles: Exotic products market, 06:00-13:00
Rond Point Agora, rue du Marché aux Herbes: Art and craft market, 10:00-18:00
Place du Grand Sablon: Sablon antiques market, 09:00-14:00
Halles St-Géry: Art and craft market, 10:00-21:00
Place du Jeu de Balle: Second hand and flea market, 07:00-14:00
Grand'Place: Flower and plant market, 08:00-14:00
Rue du Beurre: Art, artist and portrait market, 11:00-18:00
Place Reine Astrid, Jette: Consumer goods and food market, 08:30-13:00
Place Ste-Catherine: Flower and food market, 07:00-17:00
Bassine Béco: Book fair, 09:00-14:00, between mid July and mid August
Le Miroir, Jette: Regional farm produce Special Rue des Tongres: in May, annual flea market in honour of the 100th anniversary of the Avenue de Tervuren
Beguine Convent, Place du Beguinage: in June, crafts and musical instrument market as part of a folklore celebration
Various locations in Brussels: in June, organic week, celebration of organic farming in Wallonia and Brussels
Jeu de Balle: in July, flea market with a Tintin theme, following his visit there in the Secret of the Unicorn book, 16:00-20:30
Place du Grand Sablon: in September, Gascon market with local produce and music, 10:00-20:00
Grand'Place: Christmas markets from early December to early January, 12:00-21:00 from Monday to Thursday and 11:00-22:00 Friday to Sunday  
belgium_history1
When Julius Caesar conquered Gaul the people he found living in present-day Belgium were the Belgae, one of various Celtic tribes of early Gaul. The Romans called their new province Gallia Belgica.

In the fifth century, as the power of the Roman Empire was ebbing away, the Franks, a Germanic tribe, threw the Romans out of Gaul. Several centuries later Charlemagne reunited Gaul and added most of the rest of Western Europe to his empire. Apart from the wars he fought in order to expand his empire his reign was also notable for his establishing commerce, arts, and classical learning. However, his successors were not equal to the task of keeping the empire intact and gradually Belgium was split: Flanders, the north-western part, fell to France and the south-eastern part went to Germany.

This split heralded the beginning of the power of the Counts of Flanders, and cities on important commercial routes such as Bruges, Ghent and Ypres became very prosperous, with the result that Belgium consisted of strongly fortified and virtually autonomous cities in Flanders, and less unified cities in the south. The golden age for Flanders started: English wool was imported and woven into fine cloth and sold in the European continent.

The powerful neighbour to the south, France, wanted to extend its control to the north of Belgium in order to lay its hands on the wealth of Flanders which, of course, antagonised England. The Hundred Years' War ensued which eventually ended with Burgundy, an ally of England, becoming the ruler of Flanders in 1384.

Under Philip the Good Burgundia expanded its sphere of influence to the southern part of Belgium, including Brussels and Liège. A great period of cultural development commenced especially with regards to painting by the Flemish Primitives, the Van Eyck brothers being the most famous among them. As Bruges' water passage to the North Sea slowly silted Antwerp, on the Scheldt River, became commercially the most dominant city in Flanders.

In the middle of the 16th century a long period of instability began, the main cause being the growth of Protestantism in the Low Countries. The catholic kings of Spain tried to stamp out the new religion in a particularly brutal way, which only succeeded in open rebellion towards the Spanish authority. In 1648 the Treaty of Munster was signed, not only granting independence to the Netherlands but more disastrously for Antwerp the closing of the Scheldt River to navigation. This meant that Antwerp gradually lost its commercial status.

Over the next hundred years or so, starting with the rule of Louis XIV, France made several attempts to extend its control over Belgium. None of the other powers in Europe were particularly keen to see this happen with the result that many battles were fought over, and in, Belgium. Eventually, in 1713 the Treaty of Utrecht was signed where France agreed to leave Belgium to the Habsburg rulers of Austria. This meant virtual independence for Belgium, but not for long as infighting among the Belgians and the rise of Napoleon helped to return Belgium under French rule.

After Napoleon's defeat at Waterloo the powers of Europe decided to merge Belgium with its northern neighbour, the Netherlands. However, a revolution soon started and on 20th January 1831 Belgium was finally granted independence.

The Belgians chose as their first king Leopold of Saxe-Coburg. During his reign Belgium started to flourish both economically and culturally. His son, Leopold II, hired Henry Morton Stanley to explore the vast expanse of the Congo in Africa which he kept as his personal fiefdom until his death when he gifted it to the Belgian government. The Congo remained a Belgian colony until 1960.

The next two kings, Albert I and Leopold III, each had to face a world war. In particular Word War I was devastating for Belgium as it was mainly fought on Belgian soil. After the end of World War II Leopold III, who had surrendered to the German army rather than fleeing to London along with his government, was faced with substantial opposition upon his return from Germany and eventually abdicated in favour of his son Baudouin. Upon the latter's death in 1993 his brother Albert II succeeded him to the throne.

After World War II Brussels took on a leading role as co-founder of the European Community, and became the capital of what is now called the European Union (EU). It is also the headquarters of the NATO. In 1957 Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg founded the Benelux Union.
brussel-airport Official Name: Brussels International Airport Address: Brussels Airport Company, B- Zaventem, Brussels Airport, Belgium
Telephone: (02) 753 7753 or 0900 70000 Time zone: GMT+1 Location: 12km (8m)Northeast of Brussels Coordinates: Terminals: 1 Web: www.brusselsairport.be
Driving directions : Brussels International airport (Zaventem (BRU)) can be found by using the inner or outer ring roads only 12 km from the city center near Zaventem which usually takes around 15 minutes. The routes from the city center are all signposted and you can follow either directions to the Airport or Zaventem. Brussels has a road that circles the city( ring road) so if your on this road you will end up at the airport. The N21 runs in a north-east / south-west direction, near Machelen and Melsbroek, while Steenokkerzeel, Erps-Kwerps, Humelgem and Kortenberg are to the east and the N227 (Mechelsesteenweg) also. The A201 comes directly into Brussels airport and is located off the A12 and the N262. Towns of interest lie to th North West of the airport included Borgt, Groot Molenveld, Koninglslo, Machelen and Vilvoorde. Facilities Disabled facilities If assistance is required to reach check in once you have arrived the aiport contact Airport Caddy at least 36 hours ahead of journey on (tel: (02) 753 2212; www.airportcaddy.be). Airlines also need to be informed in advance if special assistance is required, most airlines also require this at the time of booking and before your travel and you should arrive at the airport well ahead of your flight time. The arrivals and departures levels both have parking spaces dedicated to disabled that are as close to the terminals as possible. To use these spaces disabled permits must be displayed.   Car parking:
Brussels Airport has a number of car parks that are accessible 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and easier to walk to the terminal from. Car parks include short term, long term VIP and secured parking which are close to the terminal, further afield remote car parks operate a free shuttle bus service and can be considerably cheaper than on site parking.

Car Rental Car hire companies Avis, Europcar, Hertz, National Car Rental and Sixt have service desks in the arrivals hall Public transport description: Rail: Airport City Express trains to the city go to Brussels' three main stations (Gare Centrale, Gare du Nord and Gare du Midi). Direct trains are also available to Ghent, De Panne, leuven, Landen and Quiévrain/Quévy. Further information is available from Belgian Railways (tel: (02) 528 2828; www.b-rail.be).
Bus: De Lijn (tel: (70) 220 200; www.delijn.be) buses serve Brussels North station and routes throughout Flanders. MIVB/STIB buses (tel: (70) 232 000; www.stib.be) link the airport to NATO, the European Commission area and the city centre.
Coach: Scheduled coaches run to Antwerp (tel: (52) 334 000; www.airportexpress.be).
Taxi: Metered taxis are available outside the Arrivals hall. Taxi Hendriks (tel: (02) 752 9800) has taxis for wheelchair users. Antwerp has a small airport that lies in the municipality of Deurne, it is generally called “Airport Deurne”. It is the home airport of VLM Airlines (Vlaamse Luchtvaart Maatschappij, or Flemish Air Transport Company), that flies directly to Manchester and London (London City Airport) and flies via London to Liverpool, Isle of Man and Jersey. Most passengers that use this airport are business travelers, durng winter Welcome Air has charter flights to Innsbruck, Austria. Local transport Train There is no train connection with the airport. Car and bus The airport is six kilometers southeast of the center of Antwerp. The airport is accessible from the Antwerp Ring at exit 3 (Luchthaven Antwerpen–Borgerhout). Bus line 14 departs in front of the Arrivals Hall to the Central Station in Antwerp. Car rental - Antwerp Airport In the Arrivals Hall there are counters for two car rental companies: Avis and Hertz. You can also reserve a rental car in advance using the service EasyTerra provides, they compare the rates of several providers in a single quote. Taxi Taxis are outside the Arrivals Hall. A ride to the center of Antwerp takes ten minutes and costs approximately €12.00. Airport Parking There are sufficient parking spaces at the airport and parking is free. Services Hotels There are no hotels at the airport, however, Antwerp has a large variety of hotels to offer. The closest hotel to the airport is Hotel Campanile (tel: +32(0)3236 43 55). For more hotels and to reserve online you can go to Booking.com, they have a large range of hotels with great internet rates. Shops and restaurants Antwerp Airport is a very small airport, there is a restaurant and there is a small store with items such as newspapers, magazines and tobacco products. Baggage Because the airport in Antwerp is small, the baggage handling goes extremely smoothly. There is a window for lost and found items where you can also store your baggage. Information In the airport building there is an information counter which is also accessible through the general telephone number. Business The airport is used especially by business travelers. There are three lounges that are linked together and can be turned into one large lounge or conference room, with a capacity for 30 people, there is also an auditorium with room for a maximum 50 people, catering can also be arranged. For further information (tel: +32(0)3285 65 13). Disabled facilities The airport is very accessible for the disabled. There are wheelchair ramps and adapted restrooms. For assistance you can go to the general information counter. Other services The airport is a so-called WiFi hotspot for wireless internet. There is a museum at the airport where old airplanes are exhibited. The Stampe & Vertongen Museum also organizes air baptisms with old airplanes. For guided tours at the airport (tel: +32(0)3 285 67 69). Contact Address Antwerp International Airport
Luchthavenlei 1
B-2100 Deurne
Belgium Telephone, fax, email Telephone: +32(0)3 285 6500
Fax: +32(0)3 285 6501
Email: through the contact form Airport codes IATA airport code: ANR
ICAO airport code: EBAW Websites