Belgium’s finest Gothic cathedral was 169 years in the making (1352–1521). Wherever you wander in Antwerp, its gracious, 123m-high spire has a habit of popping unexpectedly into view and it rarely fails to prompt a gasp of awe. The sight is particularly well framed when looking up Pelgrimstraat in the afternoon light.

The cathedral’s imposing interior sports late-baroque decorations, including four early Rubens canvases and, while the KMSKA gallery is closed, some of that collection's religious masterpieces. For a free glimpse down the nave, turn left on entry to the 'prayer' area, but do remain quiet. Guided tours at 11am.