When you enter the ‘Duifkens’ on the Graanmarkt, one of the first things you’ll notice is the long line of black and white pictures that cover the wall. All of them actors of the neighbouring Bourla theater and all of them regular customer of the bar. And the actors still do come to the ‘Duifkens’. Everything in the bar breathes theater, drama and comedy. Even the statue in front has to do with drama, but that’s another story. Just like the story of the Graanmarkt.
The building the ‘Duifkens’ is situated in, is one of the three remaining original houses on the Graanmarkt, and they date back to mid 16th century. All of the other 16th century houses have been demolished and replaced by huge 19th century office buildings for banks and trading houses.
When it is hot enough almost half of the Graanmarkt is turned into a terrace, as can be seen in the picture. And when you’re there, don’t forget to taste some of the local beers like De Koninck (just ask for a ‘Bolleke’) or a Triple d’Anvers.
The bar opens at 11:00 am and is open till midnight, except Fridays and Saturdays when the official closing time is 3:00 am. On Sundays the bar remains closed, and bear in mind that on Saturdays the Graanmarkt will be crowded as a street market is going on until 4:00 pm, a market were fruit, vegetables, meat, fish, … from all over the world are sold. The locals call it ‘Vreemdelingenmarkt’ or Strangers’ Market.