Friday, 11 May 2007
Antwerp hotels and transport
I've only tried two hotels in Antwerp so far so I can't really claim to be an expert. The first time we stayed in hotel Rubenshof whose beautiful breakfast room is shown above. I think it says something about Belgians that the breakfast room is often the nicest room in the house. Unfortunately I can't say much for the actual bedroom at hotel Rubenshof, or the shower (dribble, dribble..) or the location - which is a little dull and not that convenient to anything.
Last time we stayed in 't Katshuis (I'm not going to bother giving web addresses because you can easily google these places). We got a much better deal in terms of a big room with a bathroom and plenty of water coming out of the shower. However, should you be sensitive to noise at all, or should the weather be warm enough that you have to leave the window open - you will not get any sleep at all! At least on the weekend, because there are bars downstairs and the cathedral is very near and the bells ring pretty much continuously all day Sunday. This didn't worry us because we sort of slumbered in total exhaustion after all the excitement we were having. Also Katshuis is very convenient - it is just off the Grote Markt and everything is handy.
Some parts of Antwerp are close together - the old centre, the river, the Centraal station area and the Hasidic area - but there is a lot to see further afield. If you love trams (teeny weeny ones) - you can get them. Otherwise a bike is a good idea. We got them from a place on Steenplein in the centre and they were very handy despite being extremely poorly maintained. I would recommend going for the cheapest bike, since having gears didn't help my bike at all and is probably what was making it slip constantly.