Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Unplanned Destinations - Antwerp Edition

A beautiful mall in Antwerp
After completing my Ph.D. defense successfully in Lisboa, I returned to Brussels. I decided to stay overnight at the airport since my flight arrived late in the night and I felt it is meaningless attempting to catch the last train and reaching the hotel on a late night. I hadn't even booked a hotel for the next day. I was yet to decide on a city.

It was an overnight stay at the airport after 2 years. I was sitting on the airport floor since there was no power socket close to the seats. After some serious searches, I ended up choosing Antwerp. I booked a nice hotel, had a small breakfast and coffee in an airport cafe, and then got into the train to Antwerp. I reached Antwerpen Centraal by 7:15 a.m. Luckily, the Leonardo Hotel Antwerpen was so considerate, and they let me check-in by 7:30 a.m, although I was initially planning to drop my suitcase and go for a walk later for checking in. I spent 2 nights in Antwerp. The hotel was close to China Town. I ended up frequenting restaurants in China town during my stay, except when I went on random trips using the Antwerp metro.

Antwerp is a lovely city and I do not regret my decision to visit it. Sometimes, random places surprise you in a pleasant way more than a well-planned destination. It was the end of my first Ph.D. defense trip. Until next time, Belgium.

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