How to look and act like a local
When my BFF and I went to Paris to spend a day sales shopping, we said to each other: 'We don't want to look like tourists!'. Why? Because it isn't cool. We wanted that people spoke to us in French, because we looked like real Parisiennes. And our mission was accomplished, because other tourists asked us for directions! We were really proud of ourselves.
Now I want to give you some advice on how to look like an Antwerp local and also to act like one. I believe that it will make your Antwerp experience more fun.
1) Guide yourself through Antwerp and don't pay for a guided tour. Plan the most things at home and if you're lost or you don't know what to do, install the This Is Antwerp-app!
2) Don't take pictures from every building/statue you see. We know, there are a lot of beautiful buildings here in Antwerp (the cathedral, hello?!) but they are not that impressive on photo. And especially don't take pictures with an iPad. That's just ridiculous.
3) Don't travel around in a taxi, we don't do that. This is not New York. Instead go by bike and rent a red 'velo'.
4) Starbucks is a big no-go. We have a lot of great authentic coffee bars where the coffee is ten times better. See our app to see all the bars.
5) We locals are very fashionable, but we like to give our own personal touch to our looks. We mix high fashion with vintage pieces and trendy accessories from high street brands like H&M, River Island and Forever 21. For more inspiration check Antwerpen Streetstyle.
6) To finish, I would like to share some Flemish words. - Ask for a 'bolleke' (phonetic: bɔləkə) which is a very delicious Antwerp beer.- If you get something, like a beer or a piece of pie, you can always say 'dank u' (= thank you) but we also say 'merci' a lot. We don't know why, we just do it. - Young locals use other words than the older ones. For example: 'gast' (= dude), 'gij weet' (= you know), 'ik zen ciao' (= I'm leaving) and so on.
Hope you like my tips! Tell me what you think about them below. Antwerp kisses
text by Helen Van den Poel
pics by Helen Van den Poel