On Saturday 27 and on Sunday 28 of August, Antwerp starts the cultural year with the Cultuurweekend or Culture Weekend. Performances, talks, stories, workshops, exhibitions and more are organised to open your appetite for the coming cultural season, which in Belgium runs parallel with the school year.
For an entire weekend, countless cultural houses open their doors to surprise the public with a wonderful program. The Operaplein and the Groenplaats will be transformed into real experience squares with stages, culture tents and dance floor. Special walking routes take visitors along cultural hotspots through Antwerp. This gives the public a foretaste of the coming cultural season.
Culture Weekend is mostly free. Some activities have an entry fee. There are activities in all the nine districts of Antwerp.
Open door activities
There are heaps of culture houses, institutions and organisations which open their doors coming weekend. There are too many to mention here, so go to this page for an overview.
Square, stages and tens
During the Culture Weekend you will find real so-called experience squares (beleefpleinen, marketing speach for a square with activities), stages and culture tents in Antwerp. You will receive a few previews of the coming cultural season completely free of charge on both the Groenplaats and the Operaplein.
A culture genre is put in the spotlight per experience square and per day. Be sure to click on the programme per theme to discover what there is to experience in the open air that day.
The Groenplaats focuses on music, museums and heritage on Saturday, and on family and musical on Sunday. The Operaplein focus on theatre, comedy and dance on Saturday and on circus, classical music and literature in Sunday.
There is also a stock sale. At the Groenplaats you will find everything from fascinating books to great goodies at low prices on Saturday. The museums and heritage institutions of the city of Antwerp organise an exceptional stock sale.
“Have you always wanted to buy a collector’s item from the Rubens House before the museum closes? Or are you curious which pearls the Middelheim Museum, the FOMU and other museum shops offer? Then come and have a look! All items are at sale price. Who knows, you might even make the cut of your life”, the website says.
Antwerp Culture Weekends has thought of themed walks taking you to some landmarks and hotspots.
‘The Iconic Route‘. “The Culture Weekend is also the perfect opportunity to discover the city’s icons. Because they are also opening their doors wide this weekend to give you a taste of the new season. An opportunity you don’t want to pass up. Good to know: this Iconic route bundles too many icons to discover in one day. So choose in advance or on site which participants you definitely don’t want to miss.”
- Red Star Line Museum;
- Museum Aan de Stroom (MAS);
- Hendrik Conscience Heritage Library or Erfgoedbibliotheek Hendrik Conscience;
- Opera Ballet Vlaanderen;
- Rubens House or Rubenshuis;
- M HKA;
- Museum Plantin-Moretus.
‘The Family Route‘. “The Culture Weekend is a wonderful outing with the family. Go out with your offspring and discover delicious large and small cultural tasters. We make it easy for you and bundle a lot of family-proof discoveries in one route.”
- Cinema Lumière;
- Museum Plantin-Moretus;
- Junior Ballet Antwerp;
- Red Star Line Museum.
‘The Hidden Gems Route‘. “The Culture Weekend is also the perfect time to discover some Hidden Gems in the city. And to make it completely easy, we listed all the pearls in a handy route: the ‘Hidden Gems Route’.”
- De Roma;
- Kunsthal Extra City;
- Bach in the City at St. Charles Borromeo Church;
- Den Beulebak;
- St. Paul’s Church;
- Museum Vleeshuis;
- MoMu walk;
Beware, not every stop on these walks is open all the time. Check the web pages for the opening hours.
Art and museums in Antwerp
- Museum Mayer van den Bergh.
- ANTWERP | ‘Stories of Refuge’ exhibition at Red Star Line Museum.
- 2022 in the museums of Antwerp.
- ANTWERP | ‘Stories of refuge’ exhibition at Red Star Line Museum.
- ANTWERP | Inside Rubens House.
- ANTWERP | Garden of renovated Rubens House to be open air exhibition space.
- ModeMuseum MoMu – Fashion Museum Antwerp 2021.
- ‘Freight’ and ‘Listen’ exhibitions at MAS in Antwerp.
- ‘Masculinities: Liberation through Photography’ exhibition at FOMU, Antwerp’s photography museum.
- ANTWERP | Goshka Macuga’s ‘Figures of Absence’ honours underrepresented women in public domain art.
- Museum Plantin-Moretus in Antwerp.
- ‘Eurasia – A Landscape of Mutability’ exhibition at Antwerp’s M HKA modern arts museum.
- ANTWERP | Geert De Weyer Gallery, a space for illustrators’ and comic strip authors’ art.
- ‘Congoville’: contemporary artists walk colonial paths at Middelheim Museum in Antwerp.
- Antwerp’s Letterenhuis ft. Paul van Ostaijen exhibition.
- ModeMuseum MoMu – Fashion Museum Antwerp reopens on 4 and 5 September 2021 with ‘Fashion 2.021 Antwerp – Fashion/Conscious’.
- Museum Plantin-Moretus will exhibit long-lost illustration by Rubens: ‘Opticorum Libri Sex’.
- Royal Museum of Fine Arts of Antwerp finally to reopen on 25 September 2022.
- ‘100 X Congo’ exhibition at Museum Aan de Stroom (MAS) in Antwerp.
- ‘Cool Japan’ exhibition, Museum Aan de Stroom (MAS), Antwerp, 18 October 2019 to 19 April 2020.
- ANTWERP | Museum Vleeshuis up for restoration.
- REVIEW | ‘Cool Japan’ exhibition at Museum Aan de Stroom (MAS) in Antwerp from 18 October 2019 to 19 April 2020.
- BOOK | ‘Antwerp. An Archaeological View on the Origin of the City’ by Tim Bellens.
- ‘On the road’ at Museum Plantin-Moretus.
- Red Star Line Museum.
- Paleis op de Meir.
- DIVA, Antwerp Home of Diamonds.
- ANTWERP | Red Star Line Museum of (e)migration.
- ANTWERP | Museum Mayer van den Bergh is expanding into former District Hall.