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The modern Oostende markets itself as a year-round tourist destination, not just a summer seaside resort. As such there's always something happening and at the time of writing, October 2012, the main market squares are host to a fun fair, they are planning a Halloween event and the Atlantic Wall has been turned into an "Open Air Museum" with various installations dotted around.
The tourist office has details of all these plus forthcoming events, concerts and other things to do. It also provides an accommodation booking service, public transport information, the usual freebie leaflets and much, much more. The office is located on Monacoplein, close to the public transport intersection of Marie-Joseplein.
Website is well worth a visit too:
Written Oct 14, 2012
One thing that's immediately apparent when visiting Oostende is how clean and tidy the town is even when you get a little off the beaten path and explore the various side streets. As well as being neat and well-kept there's plenty of public artworks scattered around and even the concrete seafront promenades are brightened up with well cared for shrub and floral displays.
Much of this seems to be looked after by the town council (or whatever it's called here) and I noticed the council employees restocking the planters on the harbour front with greenery last time I was here.
Not only does the council do its bit but also all the shops, bars and restaurants present themselves well and I failed to find anywhere looking down-at-heel.
Written Oct 13, 2012
If you've bought your postcard at Huis Vierstaete, written it at Taverne The Cliff then the easiest place to post it is at the railway station. There are several post boxes here, easily identifiable being red with the stylised white bugle of the Belgian Post. The time of the next collection is posted on the front, below the slot, and I must have caught mine at a perfect moment because it arrived at its destination on the day I got home.
Obviously if you're not near the station you'll have to find a different post box but there are plenty around.
Written Oct 11, 2012
If having bought your postcard from Huis Vierstraete on the square in front of the St Peter and Paul church you then want somewhere to sit and write it, ideally with a beer, I can heartily recommend the Cliff Taverne next door. This is a laid-back little bar with very much a local feel to it. The beer was cold, relatively cheap and the service prompt and friendly. With the sun out on the terrace and a gentle buzz of local conversation I not only had my postcard-writing beer but one for the road as well.
Written Oct 11, 2012
Whilst there are plenty of places to buy postcards, and all of them also sell stamps, I was particularly impressed by Huis Vierstraete on the square in front of the Sint Petrus en Paulus church. The shop is mainly a tobacconist and upmarket booze emporium which I suppose is the reason why it caught my eye in the first place and then I noticed that it was also a newsagents, lotto ticket seller and has a couple of racks of postcards.
Even though I was only buying a single card and one stamp the woman serving was welcoming and friendly, and quite attractive too, and when I told her I didn't need a bag as I was going to write it now she happily peeled the backing off the stamp for me and stuck it on.
It's these little things that make a trip that bit extra special - people making places - and all it cost me was 1.60 Euro.
Written Oct 11, 2012
Every year at the beginning of January the newyearsdive takes place at the beach of Oostende. In recent years it has become a big media event. Its also broadcasted live on television, Kanaal2, www.kanaal2.be. About 12000 people are going to Oostende on that day.
Written Feb 3, 2006
Some 20 years ago a group of friends found it a pity that Christmas happens in wintertime, so you can't celebrate outside. They started celebrating Christmas in mid-august (around the 15th), complete with christmas trees and lights. Since that date every year close to the St Petrus and Paulusschurch, there is the 'Paulusfeesten'. A very local festival (7 days) where fun is at the center of everybodys thoughts. Sometimes people scarcely see their beds during this period.
Updated Mar 26, 2004
In the month of april, locals can bid in a kind of auction for the rent of a small beach cabine. It costs up to 1000 euro's (and more). Some people even have a cooking device so that they don't have to leave the beach at noon. Sometimes young travellers sleep between the cabines, although it's forbidden.
Written Mar 26, 2004
Always go here first and your stay will be a piece of cake!!!! and as nice........and please, don't forget to send me a piece........postcards are so welcome at
van kleffenslaan 77
4334 HC middelburg
Updated Mar 25, 2004
Phone: ++32(0)59 70 11 99
mmmmm eating related? I better put it again in the cultural tips !
Along the kay, you can find a lot of these little markets who sell all kinds of fish.
The sport of it is to ask allways the one at the bottom at the last row '-)
You can see this Oostende's lady already is quite experienced.
Just practice enough and you will get there!
For the more advanced you have this variation:
Follow previous instruction, then if the guy finally gets to the one you pointed at, tell him you changed your mind ...
Visit the travelogues!
Written Aug 25, 2002
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