Where do you go to get away from it all? One of the great escapes for someone living in Bordeaux, or Gironde as a whole, is a trip to the Atlantic Coast. One of my favorite places is Cap Ferret, a peninsula that offers both Atlantic coast beaches and Bassin d’Arcachon shores which are perfect for small children. Granted, during high season it can be a like Saint Tropez in summer…filled with people, cars and boats. If you enjoy people watching, that’s the time to go! Off season you can sometimes feel like you have it all to yourself and it has a more wild, natural vibe (my personal favorite).
HOW TO GET THERE : The closest airport is Bordeaux-Merignac and there is a train station in Arcachon. You can drive here, just be weary of the hours you choose to drive to avoid traffic. One of the best ways is arriving from Arcachon by one of the ferries (or even renting a sailboat). Ferries can be booked in advance through Navettes maritimes sur Bassin d’Arcachon départs horaires tarifs (bassin-arcachon-info.com)
Everything is really walkable, or you could bicycle between locations. Rentals are available on the island NICE BIKE – NICE BIKE, or you can bring your own over on the ferry.
WHAT TO SEE : For me, this is the perfect place to not worry about what to see…just take in the bay (bassin) at different times of day, enjoy sunsets, drink some white wine, and eat oysters. It’s a great place to escape.
The Village l’Herbe which is closer to the top of the peninsula is a historic fishing and oyster production area with colorful shacks and plenty of ‘cabanes‘ to enjoy a plate of locally produced oysters, sea snails (boulot), periwinkles (bigorneau), and shrimp (crevette). Most will offer pate as well. The wines of Entre-Deux-Mers are generally a great accompaniment.
If you go to the Atlantic side and by the lighthouse you will see the old WWII bunkers, many spray painted and some slowly disappearing into the dunes Remains of the German WW2 “Atlantic wall” Cap Ferret, France
The seafood market at Poissonnerie Lucine will inspire you, fresh fish and sea products to suit any budget and taste. Closed Monday and Tuesday and in the afternoons from 1pm-4pm / 5 Rue de la Forrestiere, 33970 Lege-Cap-Ferret
O’Sorbet d’Amour will be packed during the day with people grabbing a cold, sweet treat to escape the heat, but it’s worth the wait 🙂 / 50 boulevard de la plage, 33970 Cap Ferret / Nous sommes près de chez vous – o sorbet d amour
WHERE TO STAY : Lodging in Cap Ferret can be prohibitive and the prices since covid are pretty nuts, but some good deals can still be found. We stay at Au Phare du Cap which is plenty…we spend almost every hour outside of the house anyway! The owner is friendly, it’s clean and location is wonderful for getting away from it all…it’s hard to find a better deal. Maybe the only downside is the kitchen is not really useable so during covid when restaurants are closed it’s not ideal / Au Phare du Cap, Cap-Ferret – Updated 2021 Prices (booking.com)
Grab an oyster apero or dinner at Chai Bertrand (reservations recommended) for a beautiful view on the bay / +33 (0)6 63 91 84 88 / 60 QUAR Pêcheurs, 33970 Lège Cap Ferret / CHAI BERTRAND | Les Huitres du Bassin d’Arcachon et du Cap Ferret (huitres-arcachon-capferret.fr)
I’d love to stay in one of these classics, the fishermen’s cottage, which for a week isn’t bad in all honesty. Plus, you’re right in the Village l’Herbe which is beautiful! https://www.abritel.fr/location-vacances/p6390891a?adultsCount=1&arrival=2021-06-19&childrenCount=2&departure=2021-06-26
If you want to visit Cap Ferret, oyster farms, or take a boat tour of the area…contact us to help you plan or lead a tour! Aquitaineguide@gmail.com