St James Church

St. James Church Antwerp

The St James Church Antwerp is one of the five monumental churches in the inner city of Antwerp.

And what a church!

Old Chart of Antwerp

In 1413, there used to be a small hospice where the pilgrims could eat, rest and get the blessing to continue their travels.

Very soon, this small hospice proved to be too small and, late 15th century, a small chapel was added.

15 years later, the hospice with chapel was replaced with the church we have today!

The St James Church Antwerp is erected in a late gotic style and was built between 1491 and 1656.

Although the outside is gotic, on the inside it contains one of the most beautiful baroque interior of Western Europe!

According to the original plans, the St James Church Antwerp had to become much higher than the Cathedral of Our Lady a bit further. They were planning a tower of a 165 meters high. The Antwerp Cathedral is ‘only’ 123 meters high…

As we see today, that didn’t happen. Only a third of that 165 meters got actually built and that’s why you see 1 tower with a flat top.

And did you know that St James Church Antwerp is the only church in Antwerp that is founded by papal decree and this in 1476?!

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What's there to see?

Rubens- Madonna with Saints
  • The Tomb of Rubens and the Rubens Chapel! Peter Paul Rubens, our famous baroque painter, is buried in the St James Church Antwerp. His family chapel is also gotic and has one of his own paintings above the altar. He made ‘The Holy Virgin with Saints’ especially to decorate his own family chapel.
Rubens' Tomb Chapel Antwerp
  • The St James Church Antwerp holds a valuable art and sculpture collection. The church owns 24 chapels, all beautifully decorated and this thanks to all those wealthy families and guilds who bought their place into this church. Examples of rich families were the family Rubens, Rockox, Carenna, Bollaert, Lopez-Franco and so on. Famous guilds like the silk workers and the lawyers did the same.
Saint James' Church Antwerp
St. James' altar Antwerp
  • St James Church Antwerp has also several majestic organs, even Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart played on them in 1727!
Sint Jacobskerk Antwerpen

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En Route to Santiago De Compostela

Santiago De Compostela - Via Brabantica - Antwerp

The St James Church Antwerp is since very long, a stop-over for Northern European pilgrims, on their way to visit St. James’ last resting place in Santiago de Compostela, Spain.

Antwerp lies on the Via Brabantica route.

If you are a pilgrim, you need to contact the priest well before your arrival, to get your pilgrim blessing. Also make contact with the Flemish Compostela Society.

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Mass times!

Saint James - Antwerp

If you would like to attend a mass in the St James Church Antwerp, then these are your options:

  • From Monday to Saturday, at 11 am
  • Every Sunday and Catholic Feast Day: at 9 am and at 10 am for the Holy Mass

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Where is it?

The St. James Church Antwerp is located in the University neighbourhood.

It's official address is Lange Nieuwstraat 73.

The church is very close to the street Meir. Opposite the shop C&A, you will see the following sign at the beginning of the Eikenstraat...

St James Church Antwerp directions

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When is the St James Church Antwerp open?

Entrance to the Saint Jacobus Church in Antwerp

The Saint James Church in Antwerp is open every day:

  • From 2 pm to 5 pm 

What's the price?

A ticket for an adult is 3 euro.

If you come in a group of minimum 15 people, you only pay 2 euro.

Children younger than 12 years old, go in for free.

And if you have the Antwerp City Card, you enter for free too. Click here to read about all its benefits and discounts!

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