Information about the surrounding area

  • 0,5 km from the railway station
  • 0,5 km from the port
  • 0,5 km from the beach
  • 0,5 km from the casino
  • 0,3 km from the shopping centre
  • 5 km from the port of Zeebruges
  • 20 km from Bruges
  • 110 km from Brussels
  • 25 km from aeroport of Ostende



 This popular seaside resort is an engaging environment for young families and for families with teenagers who refuse to get bored. In addition to a wide range of outdoor and indoor sports facilities, offers innumerable opportunities for shopaholics Blankenberge and lovers of contemporary entertainment. The new casino, the luna parks, the nightclubs, the velodrome, the shopping streets with the boutiques and the picturesque restaurants form the vital centre of this eventful holiday place.

Still, Blankenberge not only sea, beach and entertainment. Check out the authentic Blankenberge: explore the old town with its narrow streets and numerous shops where many recalls the historical past; the fisherman's cottages in the former fishing village, old town hall, ground floor villas with beautiful tile panels, the casino, the Harbour and not to mention the pier. This is a unique structure that consists of a 350 meter long pedestrian bridge into the sea, leading to a monumental round building. Did you know that the very first (cast iron) pier was 1894? In 1914 was fired by the Germans and in 1933 became a new concrete version built in 2003 was completely restructured. Belle Epoque Centre that consists of three restored villas of 1894, create besides knowledge with the whole glory of the Belle Epoque, a period of about 1870 to 1914 in which the European citizenry knew a reasonable prosperity. Blankenberge developed into an important seaside resort with great architectural achievements such as the casino, the pier, coastal villas and large hotels for the then emerging tourism. You notice it: Blankenberge radiates a unique atmosphere and draws for years both poor as rich in.


Where Blankenberge now a cramped city is, it was in its earliest times a piece of vast unspoilt countryside with Wild Dunes rows, where poachers and beachcombers could hide. In addition, Blankenberge, that was founded in 1270, mainly a fishing village. Margaret of Constantinople granted the village of important municipal privileges and pulled thereby quite fast fishermen. A fleet was expanded and increased prosperity. The Blankenberge not for the wind. During the hundred years ' war, the village to do with military operations and military disasters. The population pulled away. The prosperity recovered in the Austrian time under the rule of Maria Theresa. The success, however, was offset by the fishermen Blankenbergse French revolutionaries. They banned fishing and fleet went up in flames. Of wilderness, vast dunes and the idyllic fishing village still remain but few traces.

When Blankenberge meant nothing more as a fishing village, it looked for a way to create wealth. In the second half of the nineteenth century was a true fashion sea baths and became a fashionable resort of Blankenberge. In the past they had some experience with bathers. So came in the sixteenth century all bathers from Bruges and in 1815 there was a scandal around swimming naked. In 1838 were Oostende and Brussels by a railway connected. In 1863 also got a train connection which makes Blankenberge tourism. Promotions, special train fares, posters and commercials were luring people to the coast. With the arrival of King Leopold II, the Belgian nationalism high tide. Major projects like the new Peter and Paul Church, the casino or the first electrically lighted promenade of Europe were set up, with an ultimate showpiece the only pier on the Belgian coast.

Old and new, screaming fishmongers and summer guests, there lived in symbiosis. To the damage of the first world war also destroyed all the elegance. The people came back, but the grandeur no longer. Construction work if the velodrome with crazy cycling from 1933 or the ersatz concrete pier, which was completed the same year, had much less glossy than the former majestic projects. The damage of the second world war was worse, it marked the final end of fisheries in Blankenberge. The coastal town firmly drew the map of the commercial mass tourism. The dike was gradually filled with high apartment blocks with sea views.


The pier 

In 1873 there was for the first time, of the construction of a pier in Blankenberge. The ideas were made by a company from London. The municipality was the very idea and saw it as a great asset to the tourist heritage. Of that first plans is, however, foundered. It was not until 1889 that the plans were signed and only in 1894 was the pier eventually built. The pier consisted of several parts: a hemisphere at the entrance, a bridge consisting of 17 parts, resting on iron poles in the middle of a widening to the music kiosk and an eight sided large platform on which a pavilion was built (with a spacious banquet facilities, Commission cellar, wine cellar ...). The pier was officially inaugurated on 2 september 1894 in the presence of King Leopold II. On 22 december 1894 struck the worst storm of the century also Blankenberge: the pier was apparently against wind and weather file and the plants were not affected. During WWI, in 1915, however, the pier was burned and destroyed by the German army command total: the pier posed a danger to British attacks from the sea. In 1931 the pier was rebuilt, this time in reinforced concrete. This is the State of the pier to see today as he is.


The Casino

Since 1855 tourists came together in the ships Hall of the town hall to make their evenings. In 1859 established engineer Malécot in Blankenberge and founded ' Kursaal ' on: there came the ' high society ' together. The population was not set up and the municipality went on to the creation of a private large complex. After lengthy negotiations, meetings and after many disputes caught works of a municipal casino in 1884. The casino was officially inaugurated in 1886, a mass tourists were there. The casino was finally completely demolished in 1932 and had to make way for a new casino, designed according to the plans of the Antwerp architects .



St. Roch's Church ("the tourist Church")

In developing as a tourist resort of Blankenberge arose the need for a larger church. The Saint Anthony Church was too small for all believers to be received. In 1873 there were plans to build a new larger church in Gothic style, however, nothing came of in house. In 1976 came the Bishop of Bruges to Blankenberge to examine the possibility to build a new Church. It was not until 1884 before the works were commenced. It was only in 1903 was the 18-metre-high Spire built.

As more and more travelers to Blankenberge came, grew the need for a larger church.




The lighthouse

The oldest information about the Blankenbergse Lighthouse dates from the beginning of the 14th century. One former use the name "fire-Tower" to be taken literally: often were simple brick constructions on a dune with a stone attic and grid on which straw and, starting from the 18th century, also coal was burned so that the fishermen on the sea road to House could find. With the construction of the port a new Lighthouse built Blankenbergse hiding which was inaugurated in 1872. The Germans dynamiteerden this building in 1944. The current concrete lighthouse was after World War II (1950). Today, the Lighthouse is operated fully automatically and this no longer inhabited.

Stephan Vanfleteren is itself a child of the Sea (Oostduinkerke). In an interview on Radio 1 he said about his motives for the exhibition: "My neighbor was an old fisherman. As a child you are not quiet, you see that man in clogs. Only in retrospect did I realize, that people go dead, which disappear. That real old fishing disappear. "

The Belgian fishing fleet shrinks, her crew is ageing. Fortunately, there is Vt, that the fishing community forever. Bright eyes in grooved faces, tattooed by wind, water and salt, looks full of homesick and heroism. 

The lighthouse as a building, an ancient beacon for fishing, is today, in GPS-times, an empty desert impersonal fully automatic operated relic that literally a museum. The objects – the fishermen and fishing nets – are museum objects. The traditional fishing disappear and be recorded as a reminder on and against the wall hung in a museum context.



The port 
Countess Margaret II of Flanders knew Blankenberge, during the Foundation in 1270, important municipal privileges. The village soon attracted fishermen. In a quarter of a century time knew a fleet of about sixty vessels. By the involvement of Blankenberge in the hundred years war the region for some time the scene of military operations, military conflicts and disasters. In the Austrian time began for Blankenberge a new era of prosperity. Under the rule of Empress Maria Theresia the place was favored with a Charter of privileges related to the fishery, which was practiced here on a larger scale than in Nieuwpoort or Ostend. The bloom of the fisheries came to an end with the invasion of the French revolutionaries. The fish was immediately prohibited the inhabitants of Blankenberge and their glorious fleet went up in flames. When Blankenberge sea could no longer assert themselves, had to see the benefit in a different way from its coastline.

From the middle of the nineteenth century underwent Blankenberge a lightning fast metamorphosis in the form of (mundane) tourism. The second world war was the latest blow to the old fishing of Blankenberge.

The creation of the Marina in 1955 meant the definitive end of the fishery. The then City Council saw here in a new future for the port.


The Breydel Street

The Breydel Street in Blankenberge was up to the year 1900 almost exclusively inhabited by several fishermen families. At that time there was a fishing community that 66 of such houses and 2 bars. Happy there of the children. The street has a distant past as core of the old fishing and was very picturesque. The street ran out on a dune that Lee offered to the low fishermen houses. The inhabitants of this fishing cottages lived very close to their boats which were drawn on the beach.

Of the fishing atmosphere of yesteryear witnesses two more "classified" houses: No. 27 and no. 10, the picturesque cottage of Majutte with its white point geveltje. It has a shallow Foundation, three stone deep in the dune sand. You have to bend your head by the double "cowshed door", two steps down, to get in. In the Struts of the bars you recognize all over the ship's work. You will find in the home bars in all kinds of gejut wood: Elm, oak and FIR. At the time, gave a bow window view of the dunes. A fireplace mantel with Delft tiles dominates the living place. In the fireplace there is a curious old inscription, a spell, intertwined with the words: "Moeghere Cuecken and deer Bailey". The floor is topped with small red baked tiles. In the kitchen there is a second fireplace with a large chimney and an old "pekelput" rondgemetste closed with a wooden lid. In the beams above the kitchen is a shelf of a processed, may be washed up, as the only barge Blankenbergse remainder of that historical vessel. An impressive wooden structure carries the roof of Boom pans and salvages a large attic space. The House stays fresh in the summer and warm in the winter. No one, not even this cottage, tells you how old it is. The cottage was lived in by the fisherman's family for many generations Debruyne, the "Majuttes". The last fisherman who lived there was Jan Majutte.