Biarritz photo diary: a jaunt through the beautiful surf town in France

The infinite drizzle and a lack of colour make for a very gloomy atmosphere during the seemingly neverending winter months on  Ireland’s West Coast.

And as much as I love the smell, the sound and the feel of the rain and as much as I have learned to love it,  I was more than happy to leave the dark and grim skies of Sligo behind.

Setting off to France with red dawn blossoming over a distant horizon, the prettiest we have seen in a long time, we were openly dreaming of slow mornings, country roads and wide opened windows.

We were looking towards careless days on the coast with iridescence rays of sunlight pealing into every cavern along its shores and highlighting every tiny particle hanging in the spring air.

This wasn’t our first time in town, for the past two years, we visited Biarritz in May and If there’s one thing we have learned by revisiting Biarritz; no two trips are the same!

Our second visit to Biarritz meant we could explore a different side to it; we would casually pass by cute french shops and cafes and then retrace our footsteps and pass once more.

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Located in Basque territory, Biarritz is a place where Frank Sinatra and Napoleon III used to come.

 

Biarritz photo diary: a jaunt through the beautiful surf town in France

We take photos for the joy of taking pictures, yet capturing a specific moment in time that will never happen again in precisely the same way is why we love photography.

Our last trip to France was a great adventure with a wide range of brilliant photography opportunities at sunset, sunrise and also during the day.

And even though, there are so many stories no photographs can tell – lively chatter from a nearby cafe or the smell of the sea – in this blog post, we are sharing our favourite pictures from the trip to Biarritz as well as the most memorable moments.

 

#1. Capturing colourful sunsets

Biarritz is beautiful at any time of the day but particularly at sunset. On the first night setting sun was sending beautiful orange glimmer across the water faintly touching cliffs. The peaceful evening paved the way for yet another bright and beautiful night by the ocean to remember.

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We missed the days getting longer, and we missed seeing colourful sunsets.

 

#2. Having coastal views all to ourselves

If there’s one thing we have learned after years of travelling – we love to have a place all to ourselves. Usually, this means getting up super early, hiking for hours or visiting off-season. Outside the peak visiting times, Biarritz is a remarkably quiet place, perfect for a peaceful beach escape with dreamy bay views.

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Located just where Spain and France meet, Biarritz is a beautiful and well-developed town.

 

#3. Noticing small details

Every single day in France has been entirely unique,  and when I look back on the last ten days, it’s the small and seemingly insignificant everyday details that I remember most.

Like the smell and taste of freshly baked bread, the sound of passing planes and ability to enjoy slow tea on the balcony – paying attention to little details that surround us, can contribute oodles of context which broaden our minds.

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The art of noticing and capturing small details will add meaning amid the towns rushing noises.

 

#4. Waiting for the near-perfect moments

Travelling is about staying in one place for a while and waiting for those beautifully near-perfect moments as the light comes and goes so fast – this is one of the rituals we try to practise every time we find ourselves travelling the world.

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The Villa Belza is a neo-Medieval mansion and one of the most beautiful buildings in Biarritz.

 

#5. Enjoying Sunday evening vibes

By revisiting Biarritz, we discovered this place feels incredibly relaxed, not just because of the ocean but because it oozes this vibe of a relaxed town – with quiet backstreets and welcoming beaches – you’ll find many art shops displaying art inspired by the surroundings.

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One of the many beautiful streets in Biarritz, France.

 

#6. Being amazed by the street art

The memories and the feelings of endless discoveries we have undergone so far exploring Biarritz will stay with us permanently.  By exploring this coastal town, you’ll find many art galleries worth visiting such as Gallery Plage, Gallery Mésanges, Galerie Art et Loisir and many more displaying painting and sculptures and then there is contemporary urban art in an abandoned  Garage Régina

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Enjoying modern and unexpected street art in Biarritz.

 

#8. Relaxing on one of the beaches

Once we set foot in Biarritz, all we could hear was the waves crashing on the beach. While in town, we intentionally devoted a healthy dose of our time to relax on the beaches. And, by relaxing, I mean –  taking a step back from what we want things to be and appreciate what they are.

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Despite the tourist crowds during the summer, Biarritz has managed to preserve its charm and traditions, and if there is a place in Biarritz that embodies the dolce vita, it is the Grande Plage.

 

#9. Wandering around Allée Port des Pêcheurs

There are so many beautiful spots in Biarritz and seeing them does something to your body and soul that I haven’t experienced anywhere else. Wander around Port des Pecheurs, a quiet marina with dramatic tidal shifts were lots of little boatt sheds still house fishing gear and where several restaurants cater to tourist needs.

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If you are looking for a beautiful place to visit in France, that’s rich in history and amazing views, then add Biarritz to your list.

 

#10. Feeling at ease at La Cote des Basques

There is nothing quite as beautiful as to watch a sunset, be it over crop fields, ocean or rugged mountains ranges. Lost in the surrounding beauty, we sat on the bench and tried to immortalised every little detail.

The view from the cliff above the La Cote des Basques beach offers splendid panorama over the whole Basque coast to San Sebastian on the Spanish side. Watch out for the high tide, the beach completely disappears, leaving no room for error.

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There are moments when you don’t want to let go.

 

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Now, over to you!

Have you been to Biarritz? Let us know in the comments below!

Let us know if you are plotting a visit to Biarritz and have travel-related questions!

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Our Crossings follows the daily adventures of Latvian expats living in Sligo as they surf and explore the world

37 thoughts on “Biarritz photo diary: a jaunt through the beautiful surf town in France

    1. Thanks so much, Sheree – photography is my passion and, considering that I am just an amateur – it is so nice to receive great feedback!

      In Biarritz, instead of running around and trying to see every tourist attraction, we decided to take it easy and I have to say that by staying in one place for couple of days in a row and practising ”slow travel” was a really rewarding experience – one that I can suggest for every traveller.

      Thanks again and have a good day.

      Aiva

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve been fascinated by the culture and traditions of the Baque Country for a very long time. It is a place unlike any other – filled with lots of legends and mythological characters such as female beings with webbed feet. Hope you get to visit one day

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    1. Biarritz is crammed with must-see places to visit and things to do and you can easily spend a week without getting bored. Whether you’re travelling with your family, planning a romantic trip with your loved one – this place is just what you need for a memorable trip! Thanks for stopping by and have a good day. Aiva

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I have never been here, but it looks wonderful and I am with you about getting up early to explore, going off season and capturing those perfect photos. I hate going places with the crowds. Too much of that when our kids were in school and we had to travel in summer. Hope you have some good weather left in the fall in Ireland as we will be there for a couple of weeks in Sept/Oct. Cheers. Allan

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi, Allan, how are you doing?

      Biarritz is an amazing place – it can be enjoyable to just wander around its pretty little streets or you can appreciate a close encounter with the incredible animals of the aquatic world at Biarritz Aquarium – not to mention all the beaches and surrounding towns!

      This is so exciting – you guys coming over to Ireland!! What are your plans and what places are you more excited about visiting? Fingers crossed for crisp autumn mornings and bright blue skies!

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    1. Thanks so much for stopping by and for lovely words – it is relatively easy to capture the beauty of Biarritz – this place oozes with charm and traditions and pretty nooks and crannies. We love photographing and sampling food too – I personally believe that the best introduction to a new culture is through food and changing seasons. Have a good day, Aiva 🙂

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    1. Hi, and thanks for stopping by! Biarritz is one of those beautifully photogenic places and once you have patience to sit down and wait for shifting light moments – you are in for a treat. Have a good day 😀

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  2. How lovely. We only stopped on our way through, but I agree, it was so lovely. They have quite a nice produce market there – our airbnb host (a chef) from San Sebastian regularly visited Biarritz for the market. We went from Biarritz on to Bayonne, which is also a nice visit.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, the local market where you can shop for fresh oysters, bread and cheese was our favourite place to roam around early in the mornings. After Biarritz we went to Bayonne too and found yet another market full of local produce! Thanks for stopping by and safe travels 😀

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Coastal views in Biarritz will leave a vivid impression on anyone that gets to see them for the first time, and Villa Belza only adds more magic to this beautiful town. Even though Biarritz gets very crowded during the peak summer holiday season, it’s a great introduction to Basque culture and traditions.

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  3. Stunning pictures!! I’ve visited Biarritz once, only for a few hours and really liked it, I hope I will go back there one day for a bit longer! What really surprised me were the wonderful hydrangeas along the coast, absolutely wonderful!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi, Juliette, looks like my comment, which I left ages ago has disappeared and never even made an appearance on WordPress. Thanks so much, it’s so easy to capture the true essence of Biarritz, and one of the reasons why we keep returning is its beauty and diversity. You can easily spend a week in Biarritz and surrounding villages without getting bored.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I envy you. I understand the Southwest is very pretty. But I’ve never been further South(west) than Nantes. I know Brittany fairly well (both my parents were from there), Paris, Lyon (where I went to College) Bourgogne and the South east, but not “Le Sud-Ouest”. Thanks for sharing.
    Merci

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi and sorry for the late reply, somehow your comment ended up in spam section where I just discovered it. Even after all these trips to different parts of France, we are nowhere near seeing everything it has to offer, would love to go on a hiking adventure and not to mention places like Strasbourg, Annecy, Colmar and Chamonix! Ehhh…. so many places and so little time! Have a good day. Aiva

      Liked by 1 person

      1. No worry about the time. I think we feel compelled by Internet to answer in the next minute. We don’t.
        Don’t know Alsace, I do know know Savoie, Annecy and Chamonix. Went to College in Lyon, so we skied quite a bit. (Also climbed Mont-Blanc but that’s another story.
        Be good Aiva.

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  5. I almost chose Biarritz before beginning my Camino Frances but ended up staying in Toulouse instead – which was gorgeous and full of history, yet crowded and No Beach!!! This April when I walked a portion of the El Norte Camino in April, we passed through many beach towns which apparently are wall to wall people in the summer, though we were able to enjoy them almost entirely to ourselves – so I can imagine the scene you paint. I love your colorful descriptions and pictures – thanks so much for sharing!! Biarritz is definitely back on my list of places to stay!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much for such beautiful and encouraging words – they mean the world to me! One of the reasons why we wanted to return back to Biarritz, was to finally go on a day trip and drive all the way to St Jean Pied de Port, situated some 50 kilometres away, which is known as the starting point for the Camino Frances. I have been mesmerised by this bustling French market town in the foothills of the Pyrenees for a very very long time yet because of the bad weather and torrential downpours we had to cancel our plans and stay by the ocean instead. That’s one of the prons when visiting Biarritz in the off-season – there are no crowds, and you get to enjoy its beautiful coast all by yourself. Have a good day and thanks for stopping by. Aiva

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I spent a couple of nights in Biarritz on my way to The Pyraneean Experience (Spanish Language School) and really enjoyed it. Before that I’d visited with my husband way, way back in the sixties when it was oh, so glamourous and we could just about afford a pension in a back street! I love its combination of ‘posh’ and ‘street’. Your photographs capture it perfectly.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow, I can only imagine what Biarritz used to look like back in the sixties, what a fantastic travel experience that must have been for you, especially now that you can revisit for comparison! Thanks for sharing your encounter with Biarritz and have a good day. Aiva

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    1. Thanks so much, Debra. Our first visit to Biarritz was a brief one too, and we left with wanting to see more of it. A few years later we decided to go back for a week and explore nearby villages in towns too. Even with a full week in Biarritz, we run out of time and taking in the vistas from the top of the Rhune Mountain remains on our travel wish list. We will return too. Have a good day. Aiva

      Like

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