With the doubt of any beach can be more pleasant than the ones in Arcachon, we started our trip towards the boarder of France and Spain; the Pays Basque. This area within France is known for its big red chilli peppers, which have nice spicy taste, but not too hot. The local products like the spicy chocolate or mustard is worth trying, also the local dishes prepared heavily spiced with the pepper is a real treat.
The cities in Pays Basque on the French side and the Spanish side are completely different: Housing wise the French has kept their poetic countryside style, while the Spanish side constructed completely with the post industrial age’s concrete blocks. The difference remains if we compare the people: French as the way we know them to be, stay quite relaxed especially in the small villages where only tourists visit; while the Spanish shows their enthusiastic characters in the impressive and restless way.
As tourists coming from France, we were quite surprised by this part of Spain. There were tapas street that never sleeps with great food, crowded people and streets full of litters; There were shops and bars remained utterly in the 80s, with people dressed also in the old fashioned way, faces sparked by the disco balls rotating on top of their heads; There were celebrations or revolutions going on, with every single man, woman, child taking days off and going on the street, wearing colorful costumes to show their opinion.
This is an area made too fragmental to put together for a big picture. Only a couple hours drive around along the boarder, you will be wondering around in many different worlds or times. But as long as the good food follows, we shall smile.
This is the part of South France that is not so famous, and you’d rather it stay this way. Maybe I should not write much about it, so I can keep it all to myself.
There is the forest, so vast, so deep.
There is the endless coastline, the waves rise high.
Then there is the Dune, in the middle of the two; only to lift you up closer to the sky.
There you are guaranteed for a tan. Afterwards you can always take a walk with the refreshing air to cool yourself down. You can also pick some mushrooms for dinner, on your way home through the forest, then later on get drunk with the world’s finest wine.
Vous êtes assuré d’un beau bronzage ici ! Et vous pouvez toujours marcher ensuite pour profiter de l’air pur pour vous rafraîchir. Vous pouvez aller aussi cueillir quelques champignons pour le dîner, sur la route du retour à la maison, via la forêt. Pour plus tard finir saoul, enivré par les meilleurs vins du monde.
One would easily describe this as luxurious enjoyment. But I would avoid it because it is so natural. You do not need any 5 star hotels to ensure a private beach, the beach is generous enough for everyone to have as much privacy as you wish. You would not need to go to a fancy restaurant to get a nice bottle of wine, the wine yards are all close by, within your driving range.
If you linger around the beach at night, the whole world is yours; the stars so low and the sea so enchanting. You can easily lose yourself completely and helplessly, in front of the pure nature. It is such a impressive place, that one would need to gather up courage in order to face it without trembling; while at the same time feeling the absolute peace, that takes everyone home to where we came from, a very long time ago.
There will be also a few tips for visiting the Dune all throughout this article.
Take a jacket. You are probably hot on the way up but quite windy at the top. Try the not so touristy part. The view is more impressive when it is only the forest, the dune, the sea and you on your own.
Take off your shoes. Walking on the soft sand is much easier and more comfortable without shoes. It also saves you the trouble of dumping the sand out of your shoes later on.
Try to avoid putting your bag on the sand, unless is properly sealed. Also, make sure there is nothing in your pocket before you sit on the sand, unless you want to spend the next couple weeks cleaning the sand in your wallet/mobile.
Run downhill, or roll down if you prefer, for this is the most fun part! It might look real steep and pretty scary from the top. But you can never fall because you every step will be deeply stuck in the sand. And even if you do fall, the dune will always catch you with more than enough cushioning.