Beach sports at the seaside
Active on the beach
There are umpteen activities for those who prefer to keep their feet firmly on the ground. You can go for one of the more traditional sports like beach volley or beach hockey or sign up for one of the cooler ones like sand yachting, beach sailing, beach kiting, karting or landboarding! Flabbergasted? Not to worry, for we explain the various activities below:
… aka land yachting or dirtboating. Allow the wind to whizz you across the beach. Aside from sending your adrenaline levels soaring, sand yachting makes for a sensational experience. It doesn’t take long to get the hang of, so you’ll find yourself whizzing across the beach before you know it.
What's sand yachting?
The best way to describe it is sailing on the beach in a three-wheeled cart powered by wind.
For the uninitiated
After a brief explanation and an introduction to the equipment you get to help rig the sand yacht. As pilot of the cart you get hands-on sand yachting experience.
Where can you go sand yachting?
Even though De Panne is the sand yachting mecca of the Belgian Coast, there are a few other towns where you can try your hand at this amazing sport. The following clubs will get you started:
Let the power of the wind send your kite soaring. A formidable sensation! Create a powerful spectacle you get to direct all by yourself.
What's beach kiting?
In a nutshell, it’s flying your kite on the beach, only a whole lot cooler. As your kite will be far bigger than a regular kite you will really feel the force of the wind. Start with a smaller kite and work your way up to the ones that will really put your skills to the test. Just one tip: make sure to keep your feet firmly on the ground!
Nice to know: beach kiting is the one way to learn the skills you need if you ever decided to take up kitesurfing.
Where can you learn to beach kite?
Most seaside resorts have a beach club where you learn beach kiting:
- Anemos in Knokke-Heist
- Surfers Paradise in Knokke-Heist
- Icarus in Zeebrugge
- O'Neill Beachclub in Blankenberge
- Windhaan in De Haan-Wenduine
- Surfing Elephant in De Haan-Wenduine
- VVW Inside Outside in Oostende
- De Kwinte in Middelkerke-Westende
- Surfclub Windekind in Koksijde-Oostduinkerke
- SideShoreSurfers in De Panne
Beach volley, tennis, football, yoga…
Slightly less dare-devilish perhaps but no less intensive and definitely super cool! These more traditional sports call for a little more stamina when practised on the beach because running and moving on sand burns up more calories than on a regular surface.
So how are they played?
As their name suggests but then on the beach!
For the uninitiated?
- Beach tennis: two or more people play with wooden bats and a rubber ball. A great full-body workout, with a particular focus on your arms and legs. The fact that your capacity to react gets put to test is an added bonus!
- Beach volley: volleyball played on the beach in teams of two. By the way, did you know that beach volleyball has been an Olympic sport since 1996?
- Beach football: a variant of regular football and played on the beach. Whatever about fine-tuning your technical tricks, the sand adds another dimension to the sport: agility and personal skill.
- Beach yoga: yoga is becoming more popular by the year. Yoga on the beach, to the sound of the sea and with the dunes as backdrop makes for a zen experience.
Where can you practise these sports?
Most beach clubs at the Belgian Coast will have the necessary infrastructure in place, as do a number of dedicated sports beaches. It goes without saying that you are equally free to draw your own pitch, hammer your net into the sand or roll out your mat in a spot that takes your fancy.
Horse riding on the beach
Known to have secretly thrown envious looks at those riders riding into the sunset? Stop the dreaming and give it a try yourself!
On the beach on horseback, bliss!
How to go about it?
Various riding centres will take you out on a hack, show you the way and bring you back home safe and sound. Some experience is a bonus; have a chat with the riding centres to find out whether they cater for novices too.
Who to contact for a horse ride on the beach?
Met de steun van: