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Expats living in Antwerp will find that this is one of Belgium's most family-friendly cities. There's a range of activities and attractions which cater to children and parents alike. Expat families in Belgium are unlikely to find themselves short of things to do.
Kid-friendly activities in Antwerp
The highlight for many of the city’s families is the Antwerp Zoo, one of the oldest in the world. Boasting a nocturnal creature enclosure, aquarium and winter garden, it’s home to 950 species and takes at least half a day to explore. There’s also a daily sea lion show and feeding times for the hippos, penguins and elephants are crowd favourites.
Aquatopia is an indoor aquarium that houses various eco-systems, including mangrove swamps and coral reefs. Expats will have a chance to see aquatic creatures from around the globe, all within walking distance of the central station.
Museum Aan de Stroom
Another not-to-be-missed attraction is the 10-storey Museum Aan De Stroom (MAS). The complex is the city’s largest museum and contains priceless paintings, ancient artefacts and interactive exhibitions. All of the signs are in Dutch, but the museum has a smartphone app that translates everything into English or visitors can use one of the museum’s iPods for the audio tour. The view from the museum’s rooftop is one of Antwerp’s best.
Ruben's House is an attraction perhaps best enjoyed by expats with older children. Antwerp is very proud of its association with the Baroque master painter and restored his palatial house to its former glory, opening it to the public in 1946. Aside from containing some of his most famous works, its ornate decorations make the house an attraction in its own right.
The Pancake Boat
Younger expats and their parents are almost guaranteed to enjoy the Pancake Boat. A unique take on river cruises, expats will be able to board at one of several points in the city and enjoy their new surroundings while eating all the pancakes they want.
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