We love summer and we love the sea. We think that everyone deserves at least one vacation a year, in a magical place, by the sea, to forget all about their worries and just relax and be happy.
Of course, we can’t stay too long in one place – this world is too big and beautiful and we should try to visit as much as we can from it.
For example, have you ever tried sunbathing in the city of Ostend? If the answer is no, you should definitely do it. Believe us, it’s a must!
The history of the city
In earlier times, Ostend was nothing more than a small village built on the east-end of an island between the North Sea and a beach lake.
Although small, the village rose to the status of “town” around 1265 when the inhabitants were allowed to hold a market and to build a market hall. Therefore, from a small fishing village, Ostend transformed into a port city of growing importance.
Ostend was once known as the “Queen of Belgium’s seaside resorts”. According to Wikipedia, very important for the image of the town was the attention it started to receive from the Belgian kings Leopold I and Leopold II.
Both liked to spend their holidays in Ostend. Important monuments and villas were built to please the Royal Family. The rest of aristocratic Belgium followed and soon Ostend became known as “The Queen of the Belgian sea-side resorts”.
However, after a while, the city has grown from an exclusive hangout for royalty and aristocrats into an every-person kind of destination.
Nowadays, Ostend is a cosmopolitan city with a harbour, yacht-basin, airport and over 50 hotels. You will be amazed by all its attractions an beauties.
All year round, many activities take place. Some highlights are: Oostende at Anchor, Theatre by the Sea, Sparkling Mondays, Magic Lights in the Park, the Christmas Market with huge ice-skating ramp and Carnival week-end with the well known Dead Rat Ball.
According to destination360.com, Ostend Belgium is the largest city on the country’s North Sea coast, and it is well linked by train to inland cities like Brussels and Brugge. The train trip from Brussels only takes 70 minutes, and since Brugge is just 12 miles away, you can get here in no time by rail.
Things to do: eating
When you are in a city near the sea, you must try their cuisine and, according to visitflanders.co.uk, one of Ostend’s main, and maybe lesser known, trump cards is the gastronomy.
There are many restaurants, ranging from exclusive hot spots to cosy bistros, so there is something to suit everyone’s taste and budget. The specialities are Dover Sole, shrimp croquettes and ‘tomato filled with shrimps’. Doesn’t it all sound yummy and delightful?
Sightseeing and other attractions
Belgium is an ideal destination for art lovers, and among the Ostend attractions is a fine museum that highlights works by Belgian impressionists, some of which hail from the Ostend area.
Moreover, attractions like St Peter and St Paul’s Church and Fort Napoleon deserve some attention. The Peperbusse, as this tower is known, dates back to the 1400s, and today it houses a small museum. Fort Napoleon, which was built in 1810, is one of the most complete Napoleonic forts that is still standing today.
Ostend Belgium also has one of Europe’s largest casinos, where visitors can enjoy more than 26,000 square feet of gaming space.
For us, this town sounds perfect – it’s relaxing, exquisite and full of possibilities. We must go and enjoy all its goodies. However, if you get there before us, please let us know what you think, ok? We can’t wait to hear all about your experiences.