A beginner’s guide to Biarritz
If you’re looking for a destination for your summer vacation, why not consider Biarritz on the southwest coast of France?
In years gone by, Biarritz was a glamorous destination for the world’s heads of state and celebrities. While it may no longer be one of the world’s hot spots, there are still lots of reasons to consider visiting this iconic French seaside resort town.
You can fly to Biarritz, but short-haul flights in Europe can be a bit more trouble than they’re worth. Perhaps the easiest way to get to Biarritz is to take the TGV train direct from Paris. There’s no hassles with luggage, or juggling your liquids into small plastic bags. You jump on-board from the centre of Paris, and within a couple of hours you’re stepping off the train at Biarritz.
While you don’t really need a car to get around the town itself, it’s worth considering renting a car for the duration of your stay in order to be able to explore the surrounding region. Biarritz is part of the Basque region, and it’s fascinating to drive up into the Pyrenees mountains to experience the cuisine and culture of the small Basque villages of the area. The Spanish border is just a short distance away, and San Sebastian also makes an easy day-trip that’s well worth making the effort.
Living like a local
There are a huge range of accommodation options in Biarritz, but the best way to really get under the skin of this place is to rent a private house. The French seem to be particularly good at organising short-term private rentals - you can use a site such as Airbnb, but there are a range of local websites also offering private rental options.
With your own kitchen, you’ll be popping out to the local bakery to grab some crusty bread for breakfast, or shopping at the local stores to put a few things together for lunch, or you might have a few friends over for dinner and cook up a huge feast.
Hit the beach
On the Atlantic coast of France, Biarritz is known as one of the best surfing destinations in the country. There’s an annual surf festival held here - one of the biggest long-boarding events in the world. There’s also a range of surf schools that you can sign up to if you want to improve your skills in the waves. Alternatively, you can just relax on the beach, lying on the golden sand or playing in the waves.