About The Area
In Belgium, just a half-hour drive away from Bruges, you’ll find the majestic seaside city of Nieuwpoort, that despite its name - that literally translates to ‘new port’ - is rich in history, events, culture and more. As one of Belgium’s ten seaside resorts, it has an eternal relationship with the North Sea, having four ports and several highly regarded restaurants that have fresh saltwater bounty on their menu. For those who love the outdoors, Nieuwpoort is more than just another European city, offering unique spots of untouched nature and award winning cycling and hiking routes close by.
A city that has deep roots in medieval times, saw Spanish and Dutch armies try to conquer it and had its most devastating blow during the Great War. Despite inundating its surroundings during the Battle of the Yser against the German Army, not much was left of Nieuwpoort afterwards. But its inhabitants were adamant on restoring their city to its former glory and brick by brick rebuilt each house that are in use to this day with the year they were rebuilt noted on the front. It’s a testament to the perseverance of the Nieuwpoorters and its city that has a history of coastal tourism and expanded on that after the Second World War.
With the largest marina in Northern Europe, Nieuwpoort thrives on seaside tourism and attracts sailing aficionados from all across the continent, many from Scandinavia and the UK. With 2000 berths, it’s quite a sight and one that you can enjoy from the two wooden piers that lead to the marina and the fishing port. There’s a free ferry that can take you across and if you’re there, there’s so much unspoiled nature that you should definitely explore. There’s even a chance you'll get to see the seals who use Nieuwpoort as a rest stop. Keep a look out for the police patrols that make sure the seals get that much-needed rest.
Historic city link to the Great War
Water plays a big role in Nieuwpoort, with its city center and the area that resides next to the shore (referred to as Nieuwpoort-Bad) are connected through an impressive waterway, creating a vista that stretches across the horizon. But Nieuwpoort is more than just a seaside tourism destination. Its history is on full display in the city with several monuments that honor the fallen of the First World War plus a visitor center where there’s an interactive instalment that covers the inundation.
Nieuwpoort offers a lot for gastronomers, particularly those with a knack for interesting and rare offerings. There’s nothing quite like a stroll along the award winning beach and indulging in some quality fish afterwards and the city is more than happy accommodate you. The fish market, positioned conveniently on the start/finish line, lands everyday with a vast array of delights from the North Sea on offer at superb prices.
With its central location in the western part of Flanders, Nieuwpoort is excellent as a base whilst venturing out into the surroundings. History buffs can see the front lines that defined the Great War whilst bike enthusiasts can enjoy the many routes that cross the Westhoek region of which Nieuwpoort is a part of. If you’re planning on staying several days, there are more ways than one to spend the night in this seaside resort. From classy hotels, B&B’s, high-quality camping resorts and self catering apartments, the city of Nieuwpoort has all accommodation budgets covered.