Friday, June 24, 2011

Antwerp Allures

Next stop was Antwerp! When we got off the train in the train station at Antwerp Dale immediately proclaimed his love for Antwerp. What can I say, he really, really likes the Antwerp train station. 
We went straight to our hostel and checked in. In Antwerp we stayed at the Central Youth Hostel Pulcinella it's a brand spankin new facility and the people working there were great and the building was CLEAN. So nice after our terrible hostel in Brussels. After check in we walked around town to grab a bite for dinner. One of the hostel employees recommended a place for us to eat but it was closed for the holiday (ascension day) so we found another restaurant instead. After dinner we walked around town a little bit. The belfry towers over the city and it was fun to spot it from different places. I liked this picture below juxtaposing the belfry so far away with a small statue next to me. 
We walked through Het Steen, a medieval fortress built to keep the vikings out. It's right on the water, the river is to the left of this picture, and it's surrounded by open parks along the shore. 
Next we took a pedestrian tunnel under the river to look at the city center from the other shore. It was just before sunset so there was a nice glow on the city.
We wanted to stop at the famous Kulminator Bar for a night cap but they were closed for the holiday so we began looking for a bar with a good Belgian beer selection. Realizing it was our last night in Belgium, Dale decided to start seeking out the Westvleteren 12. We were pretty sure we weren't going to find it but after asking in two bars we got extremely lucky and the third bar had it! I was feeling pretty beer-ed out at this point and I decided to end the last night in Benelux the same way I'd started it (sans many friends, shucks) and got a La Chouffe
That's a happy Dale on his first sip of 'the best beer in the world'. He even let me taste it, what a nice guy. We both decided it is a mighty good beer, I'm not sure if it was Dale's favorite though. I'll see if I can get him to decide on one. We drank a lot of mighty fine beer just in our short time in Belgium, so I'm glad it's not my job to decide which one is king!
On our way back to the hostel I made Dale swing by the main square since I'd gotten a picture of all the other town's squares at night. Antwerp's square was beautiful as well and we had fun during our week in Benelux discovering all the different squares.
Love Always,


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