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“Fascinating and vetry informative”
5 of 5 bubbles Review of Museum Vleeshuis

Museum Vleeshuis
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Private Tour: Antwerp Trip from Brussels
Ranked #45 of 153 things to do in Antwerp
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Level Contributor
330 reviews
150 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 210 helpful votes
“Fascinating and vetry informative”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 27, 2014

If you are interested in musical period instruments and music mss don't miss this collection housed in a 1504 meat hall where the city butchers had their stalls and where even the exterior had a streaky bacon look. Here is the organ Saint Seans played on in Paris, later rebuilt in Antwerp, a glasharp made from glass goblets, the 1751 municipal clarion with 6 bells, the cryter or pocket violin carried by the dancing master, and the great Storm Bell used in emergencies together with numerous wind and string instruments and much more. There are Mss of early music, including opera, and one sheet which was used as an envelope by the famous Antwerp printers, Plantin Moretus (their museum another must). Downstairs you will find recreated a metal workshop for making wind and brass instruments, some in the process of production, and another work place showing how bells were made and cast. The modest entrance fee gives a morning of sheer pleasure. We needed 2 hours and still did not absorb everything but much will depend on your level of interest.

Visited April 2014
2 Thank wyntyll
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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98 reviews from our community

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English first
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
270 reviews
98 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 115 helpful votes
“Butchers guild hall - now a music museum”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 6, 2013 via mobile

The former hall of the guild of butchers is an impressive red brick building with white patterns in. It has a basement level (supposed to contain more exhibits, but closed in Oct 2013), with main element being a large hall on ground floor that is currently used as a musical instrument museum. Only labels I saw were in Dutch, and it is a fairly niche market anyway. No obvious public access to the upper levels

Visited October 2013
Thank Huw W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gloucester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
13 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Stunning brickwork”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 11, 2013

All visitors to Antwerp will see this from the outside as the first house built by a guild - the butchers (it's red and white striped brickwork was apparently deliberately created to mimic fat streaking though meat!). What's incredible is that this was built in 1520 - just think what was being built in England at that time, nothing on this scale in brick. That makes it worth going inside to see the vaulting and marvel. There's also a fairly interesting museum of musical instruments, the basement being a highlight - especially for brass players!

Visited May 2013
1 Thank Laura I
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Barreiro, Portugal
Level Contributor
32 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Interesting if you like classical instruments”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 27, 2013

If tyou like like classical music, this is a good place. Although it is relatively small, you can spend a couple of hours listening the music samples in the audioguide related to the items. The PDAs are a bit slow, and not all text is actually translated in english, and you might get a few crashes, so be patient with them.

Thank sagostinho
This review is the subjective opinion of an individual traveler and not of TripAdvisor LLC nor of its partners.
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
1,096 reviews
603 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 558 helpful votes
“I spent many hours exploring the instruments in the Vleeshuis”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 21, 2013

So yes, the title of the Vleeshuis is a bit misleading - no longer anything having to do with butchers, this is now the best museum of musical instruments I've ever seen!

Make sure to get the audio guide when you walk in! Listening to the many audio clips of the instruments you see in the display cases enriches the experiences a hundred-fold!

From Medieval through the 19th century periods, they have everything from Zinks to Contrabassoons, and many with audio clips to enlighten you as to how they sound when featured in first-rate music. Also, some cool musical curiosities, like the Guidonian hand, with a woman singing all the different hexachords. Don't know what I'm talking about? Get to the Vleeshuis and you will find out!

Visited September 2012
1 Thank Charming_Karl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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