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“Abdij Ten Duinen: “Much ado about nothing” ... merits 5 stars”

Abdijmuseum Ten Duinen
Ranked #2 of 9 things to do in Koksijde
Attraction details
Koksijde, Belgium
Level Contributor
106 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 107 helpful votes
“Abdij Ten Duinen: “Much ado about nothing” ... merits 5 stars”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 31, 2013

Koksijde is a seaside resort which has three marvellous museums: Abdijmuseum Ten Duinen, Delvaux museum and Visserij museum. When the weather isn’t fit for sunbathing on the beach they are a perfect place to spend a few interesting hours enriching your cultural and historic “baggage” . The Abdijmuseum Ten Duinen is maybe the best known..
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The museum offers the visitor an educative and extensive journey into the world of the Cistercian religious order and at the same time an insight into the Middle Ages. The Cistercian order was really a European multinational avant-la-lettre founded early 12th century by Bernardus of Clairvaux and having franchise abbeys all over Europe... including the UK!
In the museum the audiovisual means ( although at times some are broken) are picturing very well how the monks were living and some of the audiovisuals require the participation of the visitor. There is even a short romantic movie (flashback included) with the abbey and the North Sea as background. Adults and children alike will enjoy the experience.

The visit will take you between one and two hours. After that you go through the alley to ....nothing. Actually only a few bricks are left of the once majestic church and abbey. The ruins only give you an idea of the layout and size of the abbey, the rest is up to your imagination , of course helped by what you just have been experiencing in the museum.

To prepare your visit have a look at the website : www.tenduinen.be It has an English version.

To end your visit go to the recently restored old fisherman’s house ( on the grounds of the ruins) which is now converted into a café with terrace. You can get there a good Belgian beer en a snack.

Visited June 2013
Helpful?
3 Thank MarKno
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
London
Level Contributor
90 reviews
26 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 70 helpful votes
“"A dip into the Middle Ages" they say and it is.”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 13, 2012

The 12th century Cistercian Abbey of Our Lady of the Dunes (Ten Duinen), located in the present-day municipality of Koksijde, among the sand hills between Dunkirk and Nieuwpoort, offers a glimpse into what monastic life was like in the early mediaeval period.

Most of the abbey buildings do not remain, but the site where they stood is well laid out and explained when walking around.Your imagination does the rest. The modern visitors centre is friendly and the bookshop has a good range of publications.

The museum itself is the highlight, using tableaux and interpretive panels as well as a contemporary video to bring alive life as it was - spiritual, cultural and commercial - in and around this thriving community 900 years ago. It is all very accessible to the modern visitor.

Saint Idesbald, an abbot of Ten Duinen in the 12th c, gives his name to an excellent local beer, 7%, available at the café in the abbey grounds. The food is good there too.

Visited September 2011
Helpful?
3 Thank Lycomedes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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