Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Heavenly Hossegor

Completing the Top Tips for Trips mini Tour du South West France is Hossegor.  This sleepy town is cradled in one of the most beautiful natural settings in the country.  Nestled in an emerald green forest clinging to a glittering salt-water lake, Hossegor emanates bucolic bliss with the added bonus of being beside the sea.   Indeed the beaches of Hossegor and Capreton are amongst the finest in France; their endless golden strands and rough surf a hit with both surfers and sunbathers alike.  

Surfing is big business in Hossegor and it is often grouped with Biarritz-a 40 min drive south-as the surfing capital of Europe.  It is home to many of the large surf manufacturers' headquarters, as well as the prestigious Quicksilver Pro Surfing Tournament, held annually in September.  With big names like Tony Hawks participating in the event, the competition draws a huge crowd and helps to extend the tourist season of Hossegor beyond its peak period of July and August.  

Hossegor's idyllic location lends it a peaceful and serene atmosphere, more concerned with outdoor pursuits than late night sessions.  Walking, cycling, fishing and horse-riding can all be enjoyed in relative isolation, ensuring a thoroughly relaxing experience and an opportunity  to be at one with nature.    

The town itself has everything you need, which for me means yummy boulangerie and glaciers!  There are also some lovely interior boutiques and of course the high street surf stores.  A market featuring mainly clothes, textiles and jewellery takes place on Wednesday, Friday and Sunday mornings in the town centre.    

The main meeting point in town is the Cafe du Paris, which sits on the crossroads of the town, making it a perfect spot for people watching.  Pretty much everything takes place around the cafe-when I was there last it was the anniversary of Michael Jackson's death; while sitting in Cafe du Paris I was witness to a very surreal flash dance to 'Beat it' commemorating the occasion!  Quite possibly one of the liveliest things Hossegor town had seen for a while!  

Outside of the town there are some restaurants and bars along the beach as well as a casino to try your luck in.  

Hossegor is a true gem on the South West coast, a perfect place to unwind after a hectic tour du France.  Enjoy!

For more information on visiting Hossegor please click here

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