Below the city the secrets flow

Scroll down and discover them for yourself



Slide 1 Gewelven EN

Historic arched vaults

Slide 2 Boottocht EN

Guided boat trip

Slide 3 Beschermkledij EN

Protective clothing

Slide 4 Gids EN

Experienced guide

Slide 5 Tijdslijn EN

Go back in history

Slide 6 Tablet EN

Interactive virtual guide
A virtual guide

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

The Ruien are closed untill June 8 2020.

The Ruihuis is closing its doors until Monday June 8 2020, in line with government decisions.
All interactive tablet walks and guided walks in the Ruien, including the combined tour of the Ruien and the Sint-Carolus Borromeus church, will not take place during this period, or until further notice is given by the government. Visitors who have purchased a ticket or have made a group reservation for this period will receive a personal e-mail.

We will closely monitor new developments related to the coronavirus and report immediately on any changes. It is, of course, possible to make new reservations for dates after the end of this period.

Take good care of yourself and the people around you, and we hope to see you soon for a visit to the Ruien.

The Ruien team

More information

De Ruien

Below the city the secrets flow
The sewers, otherwise known as De Ruien, are a shadow of the rich history above ground. Sewers, streams and fortifications have crisscrossed Antwerp ever since the Middle Ages. This network of both natural and man-made waterways provided the city with water and an internal harbour.

When the sewers were turned into covered drains this unique piece of heritage disappeared both from view and from our memories.

You can now rediscover this hidden patrimony. The subterranean network of passages still gives us an idea of its rich and exciting past. A visit to De Ruien, with its old vaults, canals, bridges, sewers and drains reflects the historic city centre above you, with plenty of interesting facts and curious anecdotes from a distant and more recent past. We take you on a strange walk deep in the belly of Antwerp!

The City of Antwerp has entrusted the exploitation of the Ruien to WerkmMaat vzw, a social employment project and Zanzibar bvba, an Antwerp eventmarketing agency.

Both partners created a new elan, with investments in service, infrastructure and experience.


Guided group walk (from 10 years)


Immerse yourself in a piece of Antwerp’s subterranean history

A professional guide will take you to the darkest corners of the underground water system. The walk continues in the semi-darkness along covered streams, fortifications and drains. The vaults from the Middle Ages reveal their secrets at each step.

Group walks start at 10h15/13h30/14h30.
Night visits start at 17h/18h.

€ 295/group for max. 15 people Night visit: € 385/group for max. 15 people.

Day visit

Make a choice:


Interactive trip with a tablet (from 10 years)


Be amazed by the secrets of De Ruien

Get going and be guided by the facts and fables revealed by your tablet at each stop. Discover the rich history of this riverside city and meet its underground inhabitants.

The tours start at 11h/13h/15h.

trip with a tablet

Make a choice:


Gift voucher

Make a choice:


Discovery trip by boat (from 3 years)


Important: due to technical issues with the water management system in De Ruien, boat trips can no longer be organized untill further notice.

Take in the ambiance in
a small piece of
subterranean Antwerp

Disappear deep into the belly of the city and take in the ambiance in a small part of De Ruien. Climb aboard the little boat and don’t be shy to sail into the past. Take a peek at the dark side of Antwerp’s glorious history with your own eyes.

Opening times

Tuesday – Friday

10 am – 5 pm

Saturday – Sunday

10 am – 6 pm



24/12, 25/12, 26/12, 31/12, 1/1, 2/1

Annual closing

07/01/2020 – 15/01/2020

Closed due to reparations


Reservations and tickets online

Guided group walk
Interactive trip with a tablet


Tickets at the box office

Interactive trip with a tablet*
Discovery trip by boat



There are only 15 spots available for every walk and boat trip.

*To assure your place for the Interactive walk with a tablet, book online.

Questions? Call us on +32 (0)3 344 07 55 or send an e-mail to


Suikerrui 21
2000 Antwerp

Terms and Conditions

Things to consider when visiting De Ruien

Getting there

De Ruien can be reached on foot, by bike (bike station at Steenplein), by public transport: tram 3, 4, 5, 9, 15 and bus N2, N32, 22, 180, 181, 182, 183 (get off at Groenplaats)

By car: parking Zuiderterras or Car Park at the Grote Markt – E. Van Dijckkaai 3, Antwerp

Beware: The Ruien are part of a low emission zone.  Since 2017/02/01 all cars need to fulfil the conditions for admission to enter the city.

For more information go to :


Back in time

Terug in de tijd

Keer terug in de tijd met deze interactieve tijdlijn



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1200 - 1567

De groei van de stad
door de eeuwen heen

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Epidemie in Antwerpen:
‘De Haastige Ziekte’

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Voormalige Dominicaner kloosterkerk en abdij
nu St Pauluskerk en omgeving

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huidige Plantin Moretuslei

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Koolvliet, net voor de demping

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4 sluizeniers in actie

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Bezoek aan De Ruien

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2000 - 2005

werken collectors De Ruien – Scheldekaaien

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2000 - 2005

rioleringswerken De Ruien – kapel

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Suikerrui 21
2000 Antwerpen

+32 (0)3 344 07 55