4-12 & 4-13-19 Antwerp & Brussels

So, it’s been a while since we have updated our blog and we have traveled along several different rivers stopping along the way at Maastricht (where we didn’t get off to join the walking tour of the town);

This looks a lot like John Wayne – without the hat of course – not sure what it was trying to be on the streets of Antwerp.

Antwerp and finally Brussels. Along the way we watched the world go by on our riverboat and enjoyed beautiful weather the entire time.

The River Queen was our home for a week of lovely times on the River.

While most passengers toured  Maastricht ,we chose to pass and stayed on the boat for a day of leisure (well, we did do a load of laundry) and relaxation. Once everyone was back on board we motored on to Antwerp.

The Guild houses on the square in Antwerp.

Antwerp is a major port city in Belgium on the River Scheldt with history dating back to the Middle Ages.

Local artwork about a children’s tale.

Best know for the centuries old Diamond District where thousands of traders, cutters and polishers work on virtually ALL the worlds’ diamonds. Unfortunately they don’t give out free samples. In addition to Diamonds, the City is a major shipping center and was the home of the Flemish Baroque painter Peter Paul Rubens.

Our walking tour included the sights, sounds, and smells and yes, even the tastes of Belgium.

In every town we have stopped there is always a record store selling a WIDE selection of music.
Yes, there were a lot of beer joints in town.

On our walking  tour we sampled some grey shrimp, a unique Flemish sea product described as the ‘queen of seafood’ .They are less than an inch long when peeled, have a greyish-pink color and a more pronounced taste than the traditional pink shrimps.

Grey Shrimp – tasty treats.

We followed this with an Elixir d’Anvers herbal liquor that has been produced since 1863 – this was known for its good digestive and beneficial properties and was used on horses to prevent colic!

Tossing down her Elixir d’Anvers.
Elixir d’Anvers herbal liquor

After this, on to waffles, whipped cream and coffee – yum is all I can say here.

waffles, whipped cream and coffee

Of course, along the way we saw lovely sights including several Rubens paintings in the

The Cathedral of Our Lady is Roman Catholic started in 1352 and, although the first stage of construction was ended in 1521, has never been ‘completed’.

Cathedral of Our Lady – actually four different paintings are on display in the church.

The Raising of the Cross by Peter Paul Rubens

The Central Square is lined with Guild Buildings (recreated after all the bombing from WWII) very lovely with their ornamentation and gilding.

David and Janeen in the central square of Antwerp.
The Guild houses on the square in Antwerp.
Janeen way ahead of the group on our way back to the bus after our walking tour in Antwerp.
The bus followed us along as we traveled from port to port

After Antwerp it was on to Brussels (again) where there was another tour (we skipped) and the final day on the ship. Our goal, when back in Brussels was to take the shuttle  bus into town to get CHOCOLATE (and a special box for K.B.) at the Neuhaus store.

Janeen with our chocolate treasures from the Neuhaus store in Brussels.

After the final cruise dinner, the next morning we took a taxi to the train station and boarded the 9:52 train to Amsterdam.

Another life boat  ring picture for our collection

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