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Herentals is often referred to as the capital of the Campine region. Herentals has some outstanding historical buildings, including the church, town hall and the old city gates; Bovenpoort, the Northern gate, and Zandpoort, the Western gate. There used to be a Nederpoort and Koeienpoort as well, but those have been torn down a long time ago. The Hidrodoe science museum is located in Herentals. There is also a large chocolate factory located in Herentals.
Herentals is also the centre of commerce in the region, although the cities of Geel and Mol are quite popular as well.
Herentals is twinned with Cosne-Cours-sur-Loire in France, Alpen in Germany and Ijsselstijn in the Netherlands. The inhabitants of the Campine region have common soubriquets that are particular to their towns; people from Herentals are referred to by the colloquialisms "Klokkenververs" (meaning "bell painters") and "Peestekers" (Which comes from the old story about the farmers of the town using carrots (pekes, "pee"-stekers as a lock on the "zandpoort" (one of the great gates in that time)