Chaos on the coast: day tourists not welcome in Knokke-Heist and Blankenberge, pre-alarm phase in Ostend


After a massive brawl between boisterous stand-goers and the police yesterday at the Blankenberge stand, the coastal municipality has decided not to allow day tourists for the time being. Crisis talks are underway in Ostend to channel the flow of coastal tourists.

Yesterday, the Blankenberg beach was the stage for a big fight between the police and rebellious youth. According to witnesses, a group of young people already caused nuisance all day, after which the police came to the scene to put things in order. In addition, dozens of young people confronted the police, where things went very hard. Glass bottles, umbrellas, and pickets flew around.

As a result, mayflies are no longer welcome in the coastal municipality for the time being. Only residents, second-time residents and tourists who stay for several days are allowed to come to Blankenberge. The city also asked the NMBS not to let trains arrive at the station between 9 am and 4 pm.

Knokke-Heist and Ostend

Knokke-Heist also does not want to know about day tourists for the time being. Holidaymakers will be asked to provide proof of a multi-day stay. In recent days, the coastal city has also seen several fights and incidents where corona safety could not be guaranteed. The city council warns that the checks will inevitably lead to long traffic jams.

In Ostend, the city council can no longer cope with the influx of bathers. Crisis consultations are currently underway there to avoid situations such as last weekend in Ostend station. Chaos then ensued when hundreds of people were packed together in the station due to a few train changes.

Mayor Tommelein also wants to limit the number of day tourists, so he has announced the pre-alarm phase of the municipal disaster plan so that he can take measures. For the time being, there is no general ban on one-day visitors in the city. Tommelein announced this weekend that it has become impossible to safely spread all tourists over the beaches of Ostend. He repeated his call to the NMBS to cancel the extra trains to the coast.


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