Biarritz, one of the well-known places for surfing in France, is on the Atlantic coast near Spain. It takes 4 hours from Paris by train. The city itself is not that big with a population of 24,000. However, when it comes to summer, the city is full of surfers and beach lovers not only from France but also from all over the world!
In this article, I’m going to introduce six things that you can’t miss in Biarritz!
When it comes to surf, Biarritz is one of the best places in Europe. There are many surf schools in Biarritz, so why not to take a 2 hour lesson. I’d never tried surfing before coming to Biarritz. But I thought it would be a great opportunity to do it. So I decided to take a group lesson, which was the first time surfing in my life.
How to book a surf class?
The classes are available every day, and one lesson takes about 2 hours. All the equipment is provided by the school, so what you need to have is just your swimwear and towel! See how easy is it to join the class and enjoy the surf.
Be sure to book the class in advance online. (Speaking of my experience, I booked it after the arrival in Biarritz. So, you can do it even one day before the class)
You can check this website to see and compare the surf schools in Biarritz and make a reservation:
Also, you can find the stands of the school at Plage de la Côte des Basques, and you can ask them directly about the surf lessons. There are information boards, too. So, you can check the address of their website so that you can book the lessons from there.
It seems the price and time of the classes are almost the same among the schools.
For example, each school has a group lesson for 2 hours which costs 45 euros (40 euros except in July and August)
The starting time changes every day with the tide. So, you’ll be informed by email on the day before the class.
When I took a class, it started at 16:45.
La Vague Basque
I chose the school called La Vague Basque, and I took a 2 hours class. The instructor is really nice and cheerful. He taught us how to use a surfboard, haw to pose on it. I’d never even touched the board before, but I really enjoyed this lesson without having any fear.
The group was with 6 French girls, and I was the only one who didn’t speak French among them. But there was no problem. He spoke good English and taught me in English.
La Vague Basque
2 Relax on the beach
Even if you are not an active person, you can enjoy Biarritz: just lay down on the beautiful beach and spend your afternoon sunbathing.
The beach in Biarritz is spacious. So, you can have a space between other people, and you’ll feel more comfortable and private.
The 2 main beaches in Biarritz are Plage de la Côte des Basques and Grande Plage.
Plage de la Côte des Basques
Plage de la Côte des Basques is so big, and you can enjoy the beach only 4 hours a day during the low tide. In late August when I went there, I enjoyed it from about 15:00 to 19:00.
Do you want to go to the beach in the morning? Then go to Grande Plage! Here, the size of the beach is smaller than Plage de la Côte des Basques, but it’s beautiful, and there are many cafes and restaurants nearby the beach.
These two beaches are close to each other. So you can enjoy them in one day (It takes only 15 minutes from one to another by walk)
Note: bring your beach towel or anything to lay on the beach. There’s no sunbed there.
3 See the gorgeous sunset
To see the beautiful sunset in Biarritz, go to Plage de la Côte des Basques!
I went there at 20:30, which is 30 minutes before the sunset. These 30 minutes were breathtaking because the color of the sky turned into a beautiful orange. Surfers were still enjoying the waves. The combination of the sundown and the surfers made this moment unforgettable.
Don’t miss the bar CARLOS next to the beach, where you can have a tasty cocktail with the sunset view.
7 Boulevard du Prince de Galles, 64200 Biarritz
4 Taste modern French in Biarritz
Try these 2 popular French restaurants in Biarritz: Carøe and Epoq.
Both two of them are recommended on French Vogue.
Carøe is a mix of Danish style fish bar, and they serve tasty tapas. It’s quite popular, so don’t forget to make a reservation.
I ordered Truite Laqée (Grilled trout) and Betteraves Glacées Teriyaki (Beetroots with Teriyaki sauce)
Trouts are famous in this region. The trout I ordered was grilled just right, and I was able to eat even its skin.
Betteraves Glacées Teriyaki (Beetroots with Teriyaki sauce) was one of the recommendations by the restaurant. It was the most delicious beetroot I’ve ever had in my life.
It’s like it melts in my mouth, and the Teriyaki sauce with chili pepper, which is well known from the Basque Country was an excellent combination with the beetroot.
Epoq offers modern French cuisine with a twist of ethnic taste. I could see from their menu that they got inspired by ethnic food such as Japanese and Korean food.
On the menu, some Asian food can be seen, such as Gyoza, Kimchi, which made me excited to imagine what they would bring on the table.
I ordered white tuna carpaccio and grilled eggplant with miso.
First of all, they were beautiful dishes like art. And I was surprised the fact that eggplant could be the main dish (it played the role very well.)
Both were excellent.
For reservation: http://www.caroe.fr/ja/
19:30-23:00 （only dinner time）
51 Rue Gambetta, 64200 Biarritz
11 Rue du Helder, 64200 Biarritz
5 Eat typical desserts from the Basque Country
Try the Gâteau Basque, which means the Basque cake. You can find it everywhere in Biarritz: Patisserie, market, and even bakery.
The classic one is filled with pastry cream. There are also some other versions, such as filled with black cherry jam, almond cream, and marmalade.
There are different sizes available. The individual size, which is the smallest, would be perfect for a solo traveler or people who want to try some various flavors. The picture above is the Gâteau Basque at Marché de Biarritz, and it costs only 1.6 euro.
One of the most well-known patisseries in Biarritz is Maison Pariès. Here, they have a variety of flavors of Basque cakes and some other traditional Basque sweets.
Also, Marché de Biarritz, located in the center of Biarritz, has great Basque cakes as well as fresh vegetables and fruits, hams from the region, and cheese. So, why not to check their amazing local products. Outside of the market, you can find artisan French baskets and boho style dresses, which are perfect for the beach. Marché de Biarritz is open from 7:30a.m. until 2:00p.m.
1 Place Bellevue, 64200 Biarritz
Marché de Biarritz
Place Sobradiel, 64200 Biarritz
6 Breakfast with an ocean view
Having breakfast with a fantastic ocean view is one of the best things you can enjoy on holiday. Bleu Café is located in front of Grande Plage. So have a seat at the terrace and enjoy the French style breakfast such as croissant and baguette. When the weather is beautiful, many people are coming here to spend morning hours at a gentle pace: enjoying talking with their friends over coffee, reading newspapers, and having breakfast with their family.
Quai de la Grande Plage, 64200 Biarritz
Access to Biarritz
Take the train at Paris Montparnasse station to Biarritz. It takes about 4 hours 10 minutes by direct train.
From Biarritz station, take a bus to the city center. It takes about 15 minutes.
To the beach, it takes 5 to 10 minutes by walk from the city center.
You can book your train from this link:
Oui SNCF official website
Check this video on Vogue Paris to know more about Biarritz!
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