Trip to Antwerp and Ghent

                  This time I travelled to the northern region of Belgium, where people mainly speak Dutch.

From Luxembourg it took me about 4 hours by train. I arrived to the beautiful Antwerpen Central, or I would rather say a magnificent train station.
I stayed in Antwerp for two nights (Boomerang Hostel Anverres) and visited Ghent for a day.
I bought a De Lijn pass for ten trips (€15), valid for both cities.
Tip: buy your tram or bus ticket in a point of pre-sale (newsagent’s, supermarket, the vending machines at the various stops or in the visitor centres of Visit Antwerp), where tickets are cheaper.
Of course, if you want to know specific details about Antwerp or Ghent, you can Google it all. Here I write some of my impressions and include some pics. 
One thing I really liked about Antwerp is that you can find brick constructions everywhere. Bershem, a southern district of Antwerp, was my favourite spot. As an architecture-minded traveller, I got to Cogels-Osylei street by following the recommendation of Alessandro, a staff member from the hostel. I was really glad I did. Bershem hosts a high concentration of Art Nouveau and other fin-de-siècle style townhouses, many built between 1894 and 1906. Other streets of interest are Transvaalstraat, and Waterloostraat.  
Añadir leyenda
The port of Antwerp saw thousands of people leaving Europe in order to migrate to the continent of America (either US, Brazil or Argentina). It was a gateway to the New World...

Antwerp people love eating and drinking and like to take the time to do so. Of course, Flemish cuisine has a strong Dutch influence. 
The first night, as I was exhausted of wandering around, I just had the typical “friture” from Belgium, but even the small portion was too big for me. I could not finish it. 
Belgian beers are world-famous, and Antwerp is an excellent place to improve your acquaintance with them. Although I prefer wine, I had one brewed beer. 
Green spaces here and there.
Antwerp is the capital of diamonds. The Antwerp diamond district is located near the Central Railway Station.  Some people travel there just to buy these precious stones.  

Before leaving Antwerp, we visited Sint Anna Tunnel, another suggestion from Alessandro (B. H. A.). “A piece of living history in the heart of Antwerp”, you can still access the tunnel using the authentic wooden escalators which were unique at the opening, back in 1933. Even today, the entrance buildings are still pretty much intact, from the warning signs through to the fences.
Photographers and directors come to shoot video clips.
It takes 55´ to get from Antwerp C. Station to Ghent Sint Pieters (5 stations). There I took Tram 1 and got off at Gravensteen. Actually, there are 2 train stations in Ghent: Gent-Sint-Pieters is “the big” station. The other one is Gent-Dampoort. For you to have an idea of distances, these are some train rides from Ghent: Brugges - 30´, Brussels - 35´, Mechelen - 45´, Antwerp - 55´ (I did this one), Leuven - 1 h, Lille - 1h 15´, Charleroi - 1h 35´, Namur- 1h 50´, The Hague - 3h, Utrecht 3h 15´, Nijmegen 3h 25´. 
Medieval streets: I have read that until the 1980´s, the area of town called Patershol was well known for the hookers, thieves and other outcasts living there. 
Nowadays it is a very charming and peaceful area in town, with protected 16th century monuments and fancy restaurants. 
Tip: In Ghent you have to pay attention to cyclists and to trams. Locals are called Gentenaars

In the historic centre of Ghent I had lunch at “Le Petit Botanique”. This restaurant prepares one dish everyday (both veggie and meat option) which is made from locally sourced agriculture. They have a commitment to supporting fair labor practices. The food is fresh and very tasty. 

Corina Moscovich

More about Belgium:


Receta de dulce de leche con leche condensada

Cómo hacer dulce de leche con leche condensada
Se necesita:
1 lata de leche condensada azucarada (Lait concentré sucré)
1 olla

1-Retirar papel de alrededor de la lata.
2-Colocar en la olla agua suficiente como para que la lata esté cubierta casi hasta el tope. Ojo, la parte superior de la lata no debe estar cubierta por el agua.
3-Dejar hervir por al menos 2 horas. Controlar y agregar agua para que la lata esté siempre cubierta casi hasta el tope.

4-Antes de abrir, dejar enfriar.
Corina Moscovich