Biarritz, the stunning seaside town on the southwestern coast of France, has long been a favourite destination for British holidaymakers. Known for its beautiful beaches, world-class surfing, and rich cultural experiences, Biarritz offers something for everyone. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the best time to visit Biarritz, how to get there from the UK, and what to see and do while you are there.
Best Time to Visit Biarritz France
Weather and Climate
The ideal time for a holiday to Biarritz depends on your preferences and the activities you want to enjoy. The weather in Biarritz is typically mild and pleasant, with the warmest months being July and August, when temperatures can reach up to 27°C. These summer months are perfect for beach activities and sunbathing but can also be quite crowded with tourists.
Spring (March to May) and autumn (September to October) are also excellent times to visit Biarritz, with temperatures ranging from 18°C to 25°C. These months offer warm and sunny days, perfect for outdoor activities and enjoying the scenic beauty of the region without the summer crowds.
If you’re looking to save on your holiday to Biarritz, consider travelling during the shoulder seasons in spring and autumn when accommodation and flights are generally cheaper. September and October, in particular, offer lower prices and fewer crowds, making it the ideal time for a more budget-friendly and peaceful vacation.
How to Get to Biarritz from the UK
The easiest and quickest way to reach Biarritz from the UK is by air. Biarritz Airport (Biarritz – Anglet – Bayonne Airport) is located just a short 10-minute drive from the city centre. Direct flights from London Stansted to Biarritz are available through Ryanair, while other UK airports may require a layover in Paris or another European city. Flight durations typically range from 1.5 to 4 hours, depending on your departure city and layover times.
If you prefer a more scenic and eco-friendly journey, traveling to Biarritz by train is a great option. Start your journey on the Eurostar from London St Pancras International to Paris Gare du Nord, and then transfer to a high-speed TGV train from Paris Montparnasse to Bayonne. From Bayonne, a local train will take you to Biarritz in approximately 20 minutes. The entire journey can be completed in about 9 to 10 hours, depending on connection times.
By Car and Ferry
For those who enjoy the freedom and flexibility of a road trip, consider driving to Biarritz from the UK. Begin by taking a ferry from Portsmouth to Caen, a journey which takes about 6 hours. From Caen, it’s approximately a 7 to 8-hour drive to Biarritz via French motorways. This option offers the opportunity to explore the beautiful French countryside and visit other destinations along the way.
What to See and Do in Biarritz France
Beaches and Surfing
Biarritz is famous for its six golden sandy beaches that attract surfers and sunbathers alike. The most famous beach, La Grande Plage, is located in the heart of the town and is lined with colourful striped bathing tents during the summer months. For surfing enthusiasts, the legendary Côte des Basques offers excellent waves and stunning scenery. Other beaches worth visiting include Plage Miramar, Plage du Port Vieux, and Plage de la Milady.
Scuba Diving and Water Activities
The crystal-clear waters of Biarritz offer a wealth of underwater adventures, including scuba diving, snorkelling, and stand-up paddleboarding. Explore shipwrecks, underwater caves, and diverse marine life on a guided scuba diving tour, or rent a paddleboard and glide along the coastline at your own pace.
Biarritz is not only about beaches and water sports; the town also boasts a rich cultural heritage that can be explored through its museums, architecture, and local traditions. Highlights include the Musée de la Mer (Aquarium), the Basque Museum, and the iconic Hôtel du Palais, a former royal residence turned luxury hotel. Also, don’t miss the chance to stroll through the winding medieval streets and admire the charming architecture of the town.
Experience the local sport of Basque Pelota, a fast-paced and thrilling racket game that dates back to the 13th century. Watch professional matches at local courts or take a beginner’s course to try your hand at this unique and exhilarating sport.
Dining and Nightlife
Biarritz offers a diverse culinary scene, blending traditional French and unique Basque flavours. Enjoy fresh seafood at Chez Albert, indulge in mouth-watering burgers at Le Cab, or savour local delicacies at Bar Jean. For a lively evening, visit one of the many bars and clubs in the town, such as Newquay or Chez Miguel, where you can sip on expertly crafted cocktails and dance the night away.
Accommodation Options in Biarritz
Whether you’re seeking a budget-friendly hostel, a charming bed and breakfast, or a luxurious five-star hotel, Biarritz has accommodation options to suit every taste and budget. For a truly opulent stay, consider the Hôtel du Palais, a former royal residence that offers unparalleled luxury and elegance. Other popular choices include Le Regina, a contemporary and stylish hotel, and Hôtel Saint Julien, a cosy and family-friendly option.
A holiday to Biarritz, France, offers British holidaymakers an unforgettable experience, combining stunning beaches, world-class surfing, fascinating cultural attractions, and delicious cuisine. With this comprehensive guide, you’ll be well-equipped to plan your perfect trip to this enchanting seaside town on France’s Basque coast. So pack your bags, book your flights, and get ready for an incredible adventure in Biarritz!