Only one hour away from the Bordeaux-Mérignac airport, this rare gem of a peninsula is very popular with locals. Picture-postcard landscapes are riddled with fishermen houses where you can savour oysters at any time of the day with fishing smacks being used to collect the precious molluscs in the background. As a strip of land between the Arcachon Bay and the Atlantic Ocean, it was lined with pine trees under Napoleon III in order to dry up the sandy areas. The “Ferret” is now a little haven of rest where you'll gladly ride a bicycle. In the distance, the Dune du Pilat offers sports enthusiasts a climbing challenge on the other side of the Bay while giving the surroundings a desert feel.
The bay surrounding Corsica's third largest town is truly sublime and its maquis simply irresistible. This Southern Corsican destination between the mountains and the sea is a must-go-to if you're looking for a change of scenery without being bothered by unpredictable weather. The sun is always shining bright during the summer season and connoisseurs gather on beaches of an unspeakable beauty. Favourites would be Palombaggia and Santa Giulia. Athletes will surely measure up to the mountain or look for iconic landscapes, such as the Aiguilles de Bavella rocky spikes and the Ospedale Forest. As for fauna and flora lovers, they may rent a boat and explore the Scandola natural reserve.
Welcome to the French Basque Country, where hot peppers are left hanging on windows to dry, berets are being worn by all age groups, the best espadrilles are made and surfers always ride the crest of the wave. Here, a conquering spirit permeates the air – note that it was a city of privateers for centuries. If this small French harbour puts on a Spanish appearance, it nevertheless expresses itself in Basque language. On the beach front, you can pick one with either pebbles or fine sand. A few miles from Ilbarritz and Guéthary, this peaceful part of the Southwest of France will appeal to wild and untamed nature proponents. A salty and sunny ocean breeze only twenty minutes away from the Biarritz-Pays Basque airport.
There is no way around the most popular town of the French Riviera. The Pampelonne beaches near Ramatuelle win unanimous support, but it may be preferable to lose yourself in the narrow streets while holiday-makers tread upon the sand and trudge in shallow water. Comes time for an afternoon nap and the town offers itself to curious explorers. Sit down and enjoy a fresh drink at a terrace, in front of the most beautiful yachts in the world, gathering in the port during the summer months. Behind your shades, you'll make eye contact with many celebrities, for Saint-Tropez is their prerequisite. This jet-set paradise is only one hour away from the Toulon-Hyères airport.
The Pink Granite Coast
Between Trégastel and Perros-Guirec, the Pink Granite Coast offers a magical vista that harks back to the wondrous Palombaggia beach in Soutern Corsica. Rocks take on animal shapes or modern-art-like sculptures and they look even more impressive at dusk. And yet, this natural and wild landscape has been here for centuries, sharing the spot with immense white sandy beaches. In order to make the most of this preserved site, walk around Ploumanac'h and follow the coastal control path between the Trestraou and Saint-Guirec beaches. Happiness lays only one hour and half away from the Brest-Bretagne airport.