Tomorrow we're heading back home after a week spent at the Belgian coast. I like the coast better when it's not so hectic - although you can't say it's ever void of tourists. The view at the North Sea is unhindered by many beach huts (they can only be placed between March 15th and October 15th). And in autumn, it's ever so nice to walk along the shoreline.
We were lucky with the weather, too. Most of the time it was dry (a few spatters of rain, mostly in the evening) and the last few days were sunny as well. We've been taking walks along the shoreline, in the dunes, in the nature reserve which is close to our flat: the 'Baai van Heist' (Bay of Heist). It's natuarally formed, a place where birds can breed in peace and quiet. Only out of the breeding season it's allowed to walk on marked ways through the reserve.
Knokke-Heist takes good care of nature. There are several reserves for birds, one in Heist and the other in Knokke (Heist and Knokke used to be independent villages before a fusion in the 1970s). There are several bicycle roads which lead to neighboring villages and even into Holland.
In general, the tax money is well spent here. The inhabitants of Knokke-Heist, by the way, don't have to pay city taxes. That's because there are so many second homes here - and all of them pay a tidy sum for the pleasure. But as a result, you never see a road in bad condition. Also the promenade is well-kept, the parks well maintained and a pleasure for parents with kids.
I can certainly recommend our second home for a holiday!