I have just spent the last 7 weeks in Hossegor in SW France. A place I used to visit a lot on holidays and surf trips and a place I love. It has been a long overdue visit and to live like a local for a couple of months has been really cool. I hooked up with a friend from Ireland and his girlfriend who are working here for the summer and we shared a house in a little village a few KM from the sea.
This place has always been a really special place for me. A beach over 100KM in length backed by sand dunes and a massive pine forests known as the Landes forest. Every now and then these cool little seaside towns appear in the forest. And your backdrop, the Pyrenees Mountains and North Spain which is only a short drive down the motorway. This area is ripe for exploring. Especially if you surf or appreciate the ocean and amazing places.
Historically the forest was planted by Napoleon to protect from erosion. The river that used to run in to Hossegor was redirected to Bayonne leaving a deep channel in the ocean that creates powerful waves that come straight out of deep water. This makes it the surf capital of Europe. In more recent history small Australian surf companies like Quicksilver and Rip Curl set up shop here and grew to become what they are today.
The scene down here is all about surf and long days on the beach followed by chilled evenings or if you want to party then there is plenty of that at your disposal too. Hossegor is a proper little surf town complete with skate parks and plenty of surf shops. The surrounding towns are a more chilled affair. The forest is full of campsites. If this kind of thing sounds like your scene then the summers here are awesome!
I have lived like a proper local this time, complete with a proper language barrier ha. I have never cycled round as much as I have done this summer. It’s been roasting hot, the surf has been pumping, the food has been superb, all has been great. As I contemplate heading to Paris for a flight home then back to Greece I am already missing this special place a lot.