Among the preferred summer destinations for Belgium’s bourgeoisie, Knokke sprawls with a renowned nightlife scene that caters to a rather insular clique. However, the 20 km coastal stretch at Knokke-Heist also attracts the travellers for a quiet walk or surfing on the waves, apart from observing the city from a distance. From food to climate to architecture to activities, everything is different from the seaside.
1. Walk Along the Beach
With its twelve-mile stretch, Knokke-Heist combines five different beaches or districts, it would be a sacrilege not to walk bare feet on the well-groomed sand. The beach is easy to walk on and very clean. Whether it is summer, spring, autumn or winter; it is always nice to walk this part of town in order to enjoy the fresh air from the coast. You could also rent a bike or a ‘cuistax’ and pedal with the entire family around the town.
2. Be a Part of the Cartoon Festival
Each summer, hundreds of cartoons from all over the world are on display in the Lagunahal in Duinbergen (part of Knokke-Heist). The universal language of cartoons, regardless of nationality or linguistic barriers, makes everyone enjoy this event. With extraordinary diversity and quality of the cartoon entries, I can guarantee from personal experience you’re most likely to leave with a big smile on your face. Write to firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
3. Wander at Duinbergen’s White Villas
Duinbergen is known for its white old villas. Years ago, it used to be obligatory to build your villa in a certain style. Now it’s nice to stroll along the small alleys surrounded by the villas. Duinbergen also hosts the annual international Firework Festival at Albertstrand (between Duinbergen and Knokke). Five countries demonstrate professional fireworks accompanied with music every second day of the festival that dutifully begins on a Sunday.
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4. Indulge in Nature at Zwin
The Zwin is a nature reserve on the Belgian-Dutch border coastal region. It consists of the entrance area of a former tidal inlet that connected the North Sea with the ports of Sluis and Bruges inland during the Middle Ages. The Zwin inlet was formed originally by a storm that broke through the Flemish coast creating a tidal channel that reached 15 km inland. The new waterway offered access to the sea to the inland city of Bruges that consequently rose to become one of the foremost medieval port cities of Europe. Later the channel was affected by progressive silting and caused the waterway to become unusable and cut off the harbour of Bruges from the sea. Now it is a wonderful little natural reserve with an area of 1.25 square kilometres, famous for its variety in salt-resistant flora such as Sea lavender. It is also popular among the bird watchers. More information available on: http://www.zwin.be/
5. Ride the Waves
Knokke gets relatively bigger and more frequent waves as compared to other coasts in the country, making it ideal for surfing. However, don’t expect Australian size waves, it is after all only the Northern Sea. Please write to firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.