Follow the Atlantic along one of Europe’s most famous trails: the Velodyssey, 1,200km of cycle tracks between Norway and Portugal. Your itinerary begins in Arcachon and passes by the Dune of Pilat. Stunning lakes await you between Biscarrosse and Mimizan. Take advantage of the water sport activities in Hossegor and end by partying in Bayonne. This is an ideal, well signposted trip for a cycle touring experience – as long as pedaling 30 to 50km per day isn’t (too much of) a struggle.
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Join the Velodyssey south of Arcachon and head for the dunes! Enjoy ocean views along the Atlantic coastline and be sure to take a break to explore the famous Dune of Pilat. Head slightly inland to enjoy forests and walk along the great lake of Biscarrosse. If possible, pop over to the hydrobase before spending an evening in Biscarosse, a large, unconventional village wedged between the numerous lakes in the Landes forest.
Enjoy Biscarrosse and its water sports and Seaplane Museum before taking the road to Mimizan Beach. On the way, lunch in one of the leisure areas by the lake or head directly to the arrival point to enjoy numerous water sports: sailing, kitesurfing, sand yachting… You will find it all in the region’s first seaside resort, created in the Landes in the 19th century. The surrounding countryside also offers beautiful family walks.
Get warmed up for this stage, the longest section of your tour. Veer gently away from the ocean to enter the Landes forest – also known as la Pinède (The Pinewood) for its incredible coniferous fields… Some of the signposted trails on your right will allow you to reach the coast for some lunch or a swim, for example to Saint-Girons Plage. Finally, head further inland to reach the small village of Linxe where you can spend the night.
The pace relaxes a little for the last two stages. Leaving Linxe, head through the charming commune of Leon and head straight for the ocean, crossing through the Landes forest. Arrive in Hossegor relatively early for an afternoon by the sea! A paradise for surfers and boating enthusiasts of all descriptions, this famous resort is blessed with great sandy beaches for afternoon swimming or lounging. Observing the architecture: the Basque influence is more evident here than previous stages.
Leaving Hossegor, you will get one last look of the forest before finally leaving the coastline: to reach Bayonne! The « bonne rivière » of Basque country and the south-west. Take the time to explore this historical city and its tall, half-timbered houses, but also its countless bars, bodegas and restaurants. Early evening, as well as early morning, a train will take you back to Arcachon in just three hours – and the chance to enjoy the scenery without having to pedal this time.
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