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Oostduinkerke is a popular seaside resort in the Belgian province of West Flanders. The name Oostduinkerke translates as 'East Dunkirk'. The town originally shared its name with the French city of Dunkirk; therefore, in the 13th century, 'Oost-' was added to its name to avoid confusion with its French counterpart. Oostduinkerke is part of Koksijde, which also includes St-Idesbald and Wulpen.
Oostduinkerke lies amidst a dune area (approximately 2.4 km²), which is now a protected nature reserve.
To go for walks in the nature reserves (7 km²) or on the beach (8 km) or on the promenade (3.6 km) is a refreshing experience. The sandy beach stretches from 250 to 700 m at ebb-tide and extends over 30 km, via De Panne to the beach of Dunkirk (France), which explains why Oostduinkerke is popular with sand yachters and parakarters.
Oostduinkerke is known for its shrimpers on horseback, a considerable tourist attraction. It is the only place in the world where you can see such shrimpers. Fishery folklore is still very much alive.
Oostduinkerke has several museums. The National Fishery Museum gives a historical survey of Flemish fishery and shows among other things scale models of fishing boats from 800 AD up to the present, and an original fisherman's cottage. Other museums are: 'The Key and Lock Museum' (a unique historical survey of 3,000 years of keys and locks), a regional museum 't Krekelhof (a huge collection of craft objects and curiosities from the 19th century), and Florishof (old crafts and folkloristic objects). Oostduinkerke is also home to Koksijde Golf ter Hille, a par-72 golf course.
The British Military Cemetery (1940-1945) bears witness to British sacrifices in the Battle of Dunkirk.