Mechelen may be small, but you can enjoy it big time. Once, Mechelen was even the Burgundian capital of the Republic of the Netherlands. Really a city for epicureans. And you can still enjoy fantastic food here, but you can also find trendy shops and plenty of museums and other heritage.
Okay, Mechelen is bursting with interesting sights and museums. Take for example the Sint-Romboutstoren on the Grote Markt, which you can climb more than 97 metres into the air. Or the Hof van Busleyden Museum, housed in the Renaissance city palace and the Palace of Margaret of Austria. Also worth visiting is Kazerne Dossin, a museum that tells about the Holocaust and human rights. Of a completely different order is Brouwerij Het Anker, one of the oldest breweries in Belgium, where beer lovers can put their lips to a glass of Gouden Carolus beer. For tasty snacks, fresh vegetables and fragrant herbs, De Vleeshalle is the place to be. The old market hall from 1881 now serves as a food court. Mechelen is also full of greenery in the form of inner gardens and courtyards. Like De Kruidtuin at the end of the Dijlepad!
In the surroundings of Mechelen, you can completely relax in monastery gardens, castle parks and nature reserves. There are plenty of walking and cycling opportunities in this watery region. Cycle along the banks of the Dijle and the Zenne, for example, or walk around the Fort of Walem, which was taken under fire by the Germans during WWI.