Aquitaine
Best months:
July to October
Travel article
LAST UPDATED 18/03/2008
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introduction

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Neutrality: Map of Alsase, by Rinaldum; 9 March 2005

Aquitaine is one of the 26 regions of France, located in the south western part of the country. It is an extensive region with a long coastline along the Atlantic Ocean (Bay of Biscay) and a mountainous border with Spain along the Pyrenees Mountains.

surfing

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Carte localisation region France Aquitaine;

The wide mouth of the Gironde is the divide from the rocky undulating coastline to its north and the long beaches to its south. It actually marks the start of the longest beach in Europe, which stretches way down to the mouth of the River Adour. This long stretch of sand just happens to be the home of some of the best beach break barrels in Europe too. With breaks like Lacanau, La Graviere and Avalanche this coastline has rich pickings for the surfer and is well worth a visit.

where to stay

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Chensiyuan: Day173abfastg; 24 July 2006

Accommodation is varied in France, as with most western countries, and offers a full range of choice to suit every budget and it goes something a little like this:-

Short term rentals

These are usually privately owned apartments or villas and can be rented from a week or so up to a couple of months. The term typically will run Saturday to Saturday and many are only available in the summer months. The main advantage to this option is it works out fairly cheap if there is a group of you and you can be totally self sufficient as they usually have a fully fitted kitchen and laundry. There are many letting agencies that you can book these through, just do an internet search on your preferred area, many websites are in both English and French.

Hotels

Hotels come in categories ranging from 1 to 4 stars in France, 4 being the most luxurious – and expensive. This option does fill up quickly in the summer months and in the larger cities such a Paris, so book well in advance.

B & B’s

The French term for a bed and breakfast is a “Chambres d’hôte” and you can find them throughout France, mainly in the rural areas and towns. The prices are based upon a nightly rate but check that breakfast is included.

Gîtes

Gîtes or gîtes ruraux are holiday cottages, again usually found in the more rural areas, and are rented on a weekly basis. These come fully equipped with at least a couple of bedrooms, living area, kitchen and laundry so are geared up for a self sufficient, self catering type holiday.

Camping

Camping is by far one of the most popular ways to stay in France and the summer climate is ideal. Most campsites are in a pristine pine forest settings and are well maintained and often include facilities such as an onsite bakery or “boulangerie” and swimming pools, volleyball etc. Camping is a great way to meet fellow travellers in France and adds perfectly to the atmosphere of a European surfari as well as being very cheap. Many of the main surf breaks on the west coast of France are backed by campsites.

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