Did you know that you can see from a tram in a day the entire Belgian coastline of the North Sea from the border with the Netherlands until reaching the dunes of sand near France? C’est posible!
The Belgian Coast Tram from Knokke until De Panne has 65 kilometers and is the longest tram line in the world with 67 stops. Beautiful Belgium. De Kusttram (in dutch) is a tram part of the public transport that connects the Flemish towns and resorts along the entire sandy coast. Talk about World records. So if you buy a regular day train ticket, the tram trip is part of the package.
De Kusttram is the tram that connects the 10 towns in the Flemish coast:
- De Panne
- De Haan
De Panne – Oostende – Knokke
The 2 hours and 15 minutes trip one way can be done all at once or with stops in the cutest town along the way. To be honest, I split the trip from one corner of the country to another in two ocassions and each time half of the way to Oostende.
First tram trip started near France, from De Panne, that has the widest beach, with a first stop in Niuwport. I must say that Niewport had a beautiful harbor area. We walked on the beach until we reached the next town, Middelkerke and from there, took the tram until Oostende, that has a very long esplanade with neoclassical arcades called Royal Galleries. The city of Ostend is the largest on the coast and has the easiest connection to return to Brussels.
Second time started near the Netherlands in Knokke, a very elegant resort, with a first stop in Blankenberge and a second in De Haan, that became a favorite one. De Haan is beautiful and I felt transported to the Belle Epoque immediately. And later continued until – you guessed – Oostende again in the middle, in time for dinner and sunset. Enjoyed this second half more and repeated next summer.
Resources for your trip
Train ticket using the Belgian Rail services.
The website of the Belgian coast offers information on the stops/towns along the coast.
One alternative – Bruges was my favorite day-trip from Brussels. I went so many times I lost count. More about this city soon , promise!
Along the way and the years, I truly appreciated and admired the creativity and innovation of Belgium when it came to transportation and trains.