A few weeks back I posted about my favourite way to spend a day. I thought it would be neat to have fellow expats and Londoner’s share their version of a perfect day, so I asked around and found a few lovely ladies who were interested in contributing.
Catherine Melnyk and I worked together for a few summer’s in Edmonton and it’s remarkable how our paths continued to cross since then. We were lucky enough to visit Catherine’s neck of the woods in France and have her graciously show us around. You can read about our adventures to Biarritz, San Sebastián and Biscarrosse on the blog.
Catherine’s perfect day certainly put me in the mood for a beachy summer holiday, I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I did!
A perfect day in Biscarrosse would mean three things,
- Chocolatine or Pain au Chocolat
I’ve been living in Biscarrosse, France for 3 years. Uprooted from Edmonton in 2012, I’ve been learning to navigate the French, and more specifically the Sud-Ouest part of France. Biscarrosse is a touristic town. The summer months see the population rise well over 100 000 from the 10 000 regular inhabitants. The draw for visitors is the:
- Atlantic ocean, as Biscarrosse is situated on the Bay of Biscay.
- The forest of Les Landes, which offers great hikes and biking trails.
- Biscarrosse lake, where you can wind surf, paddle board, swim, and kayak.
For a perfect vacation I imagine people are drawn to this area for the abundance in surfing, hiking and swimming opportunities. When July and August arrive, license plates can be seen from all over Europe including Great Britain, Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, Portugal, Spain, and of course, from all over France. The area really comes alive with youth arriving for summer time jobs, families taking their first vacations, and young and old couples seeking a picturesque summer retreat.
After Andrea and her family came to visit this tiny corner of Europe for one week, she kindly asked if I was interested in contributing to her blog. She asked, ‘what would a perfect day in Biscarrosse be?’ I’ve given it some thought and I have finally cultivated what I would consider a perfect summertime day in Biscarrosse.
For me, Friday’s are the best days in Biscarrosse because I get to wander the Biscarrosse market. But before I get to my wanderings in the market, a perfect day would start off with a run. Currently I’m training right now for a race called the Paris-Versailles. The goal is for competitors to run 16km from the Champs-Elysees to the outskirts of the Palace Versailles. So a perfect morning would start with a run along the canal.
The canal acts as a border to the town of Biscarrosse and stretches about 9 km. It has a nice paved pedestrian sidewalk, and is surrounded by forest so it is very quiet. Many people go here to fish, canoe or even take a lazy boat ride as it connects Biscarrosse Lake to Parentis Lake.
If the sun is shining and there is a light breeze, you can navigate the entire town by bike. So after my run, on a perfect day, I would take off on my bike and head to meet up with friends for a morning chocolatine and café. My favorite thing to order is a café noisette. I like it because the shot of espresso is just the right amount for me, and they add a dollop of milk. Parfait! If it’s a Friday I will pass by the local market and pick up cheese, sausage and other delights to nibble on during the weekend.
In the afternoon, the lake is prime destination for any person, local or tourist. With the sun shining, you can truly relax, read your book, and doze to the sounds of summer. Summer in France, and a perfect day in Biscarrosse would not be complete without a glass of rosé. For lunch at the beach, I would take a baguette, some jambon and beurre (ham and butter), and have a picnic at the plage (beach). If I’m feeling extra adventurous, I can even take a turn doing stand up paddle boarding or kayaking to get a better view of the lake.
A perfect end to a perfect day would be a stroll along the beach to watch the sunset, or to fly a kite, and a nice dinner of fresh moules et frites (mussels and fries), followed by ice cream for dessert. Bon Appétit!
There is actually quite a lot to do around Biscarrosse in the summer. Other fun day activities to make a perfect day in the sud-ouest would be a trip to the Dune du Pyla, a visit to the town of Arcachon and Cap Ferret, a morning spent picking blueberries, or even a drive into Bordeaux for a change from beach pace of life to the always humming city buzz.