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- de Singel
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  •  a total area: 14,055ha
  • argest general cargo port in Europe
  • eight largest container port in the world
  • the port provides work for about 57,200 people
  • Antwerp has the largest dock in the world,  the 'Berendrecht' lock
  • overall storage and handling space: 1,200 ha


'The Scheldt river owes its existence to God, and Antwerp owes its existence to the Scheldt river' is a popular saying that shows how important the river Scheldt is for the city of Antwerp. Thanks to this waterway Antwerp has become the second-largest harbor in Europe (after Rotterdam), and the fourth largest harbor in the world.

Although the open North Sea is about 60 km away from Antwerp, the river is so large that sea-going vessels and large oil tankers can sail to deliver their products in the vast port area of the city.

Until the 19th century, the harbor was situated right at the entrance of the city, alongside the riverbanks where now the 'Steen' -castle stands. The port was enlarged in the 19th century with an artificial dock, the so-called Napoleon Dock. During the French occupation of Belgium, Napoleon wanted to turn the Antwerp Harbor into a military port, from where he could attack England in case of war.

The new harbor is situated further north of the city, between Antwerp and the border with Holland. The importance of the Harbor in the Second World War (for bringing in allied military equipment) brought with it that Antwerp was severely hit by V1 and V2  rocket bombs, sent by the Nazis in the last years of the war to handicap the Allied troops by bombing one of the most important harbors.
Since the 1950's the use of containers has grown steadily. Antwerp is now the eight largest container port in the world. A guided visit of the harbor can show how omnipresent the metal boxes have become.



For more technical information about the Antwerp harbor, please follow this link

The port of Antwerp 

Survey map of the Antwerp Harbor

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he Manta