Herentals, a commune of 25,000 located 25 kilometers east of Antwerp traveling along the E313 roadway, is an important transportation hub where several canals, highways, and railway lines come together. Before intense industrial development in the 19th century, the Herentals economy was based on textile manufacturing and the shipment of fresh water to the brewers of Antwerp. Today, the economy is dominated by heavy industry.
Architectural items of note in Herentals include the Town Hall, the Beguine Convent, and St. Waudru's Cathedral. Just outside the city limits lies Papakelder's Vista, a hilltop with a lookout tower from which visitors get an excellent view of the surrounding area. A curious attraction is the Skull Museum, where skeletons from hundreds of animals are on display.
Morkhoven and Noorderwijk are boroughs within the municipal district of Herentals.