Antwerp is the capital city of the Flanders region of Belgium. The city has an approximate population of 512,000 and is the largest populated city in the Flanders region and also within Belgium.
Antwerp is a main destination of Belgium in the area of Flanders. The overwhelming friendliness of the locals of Antwerp and their preference for the best food and extremely good living, merged with their low stress lifestyle, makes it a desirable and relaxed place to see. Renowned for being the “world’s biggest diamond city”, over 70% of all diamonds are traded in Antwerp. The Diamond Industry is the heart of the economic section in Belgium. Over 85% of the world’s rough diamonds, 50% of cut diamonds, and 40% of industrial diamonds are traded in the city.
Antwerp originates from “aan de werpe”, which is Dutch for “at the throw”, referring to just where the river throws its sand. The name also offers a story saying it comes down from “Hand werpen”, which converted is “throwing a hand”. In the official flag, the castle “het Steen” and the hand of Antwerp are displayed.
From the 16th century, Antwerp was actually considered one of the most important financial centres worldwide, in which traders from all over Europe and Asia sold and purchased their goods. Following the siege of Antwerp in 1585 by the Spanish, the role as a fiscal centre had been taken over by Amsterdam. Nonetheless, the 19th century and particularly the 20th century, Antwerp has produced a serious financial return. With just a population of 506,225 it is the 2nd largest city in Belgium after Brussels and it owns an important European port.
The town of Antwerp homes many interesting historic buildings from different ancient periods, and countless interesting museums. Recently it has become a stylish region, attracting a significant Flemish and additionally foreign artists, writers, intellectuals, and celebrities. This is certainly reflected in Antwerp’s many fashionable pubs and also retail stores. Antwerp is a town with plenty to stumble upon. Whilst it may not be historically preserved as various other Flemish medieval towns, like Bruges or perhaps Ghent, it is a very vibrant region, supplying a perfect combination of history and additionally present-day contemporary life.