Tripadvisor listed these 10 beaches as the best beaches in France in their Travellers’ Choice awards – do you agree?
1. Plage du Sillon, Saint-Malo (Ille-et-Vilaine)
Spanning 3km, this is the longest beach in Saint-Malo and is actually made up of 3 different sections: la Grande Plage, la plage de la Hoguette and la plage de Rochebonne. The beach is ideal for wind-surfing and other activities and the ancient dyke which follows the Grande Plage is a lovely spot to stroll along and admire beautiful 19th-century villas. Facing the open sea and the old Paramé sea wall, Sillon beach is a perfect place to taste the maritime air of Brittany.
2. La Côte des Basques, Biarritz (Pyrénées-Atlantiques)
A highly sought-after surf spot, the Côte des Basques beach is set in an exceptional setting framed by rocky cliffs and offering views of the Spanish coast and the Pyrénées in the distance. The long sandy beach is popular with families and you can take surfing lessons but the sea can be treacherous: the access is rendered difficult at high tide so swimming is forbidden during those times.
3. Plage de Palombaggia, Porto Vecchio (Corse)
With its turquoise waters and snow-white sand, this Corsican beach wouldn’t be out of place in the Caribbean. Pine trees offer a welcome shade in the Corsican heat, boulders pebble the sand and shallow waters while soft dunes offer a pleasant backdrop and shelter. There is pretty path that leads to the beach which is close to the town of Porto-Vecchio in southern Corsica.
4. Plage de Deauville, Deauville (Calvados)
Perhaps one of the most jet-set of beaches, Deauville’s long stretch of sand has seen many a celebrity sink its feet in the fine golden sand or tread on the famous Planches flanked by wooden cabins. From its Art Déco beach huts contrasting with the huge mansions on the promenade to the colourful parasols that pop up each summer, this beach is a paradise for photographers.
5. Plage de Saleccia, Corsica
With its long expanse of white sand and turquoise sea, the secluded Plage de Saleccia is often named as one of the best beaches in the world. You can’t just drive to this beach unless you have a 4×4 but there are regular ferries from Saint-Florent or you can take a 4×4 tour. Take your own shade and food and drink and enjoy a day basking in the Corsican sun.
6. Plage du Touquet, Le Touquet (Pas-de-Calais)
This famous beach in Pas-de-Calais is no fewer than 12km-long! Because of its size, you’ll find plenty of activities to suit all ages, from sand yacht racing to child-friendly beach clubs sprawled out on the golden sand. The beach is west-facing and is the perfect spot to watch the sun set.
7. Plage du Petit Sperone, Bonifacio (Corse)
This little cove is protected by two narrow pieces of rocky land and its silvery sand runs through your fingers like silk as crystal-clear water laps gently at its shores. This beach is ideal for snorkelling and diving but will also suit those wanting to relax in the sunshine. You can enjoy views of the pretty Cavallo island just opposite. It’s about 20 minutes away from Bonifacio but this little haven of tranquillity is really worth it.
8. Plage de Hendaye, Hendaye (Pyrénées-Atlantiques)
Located on the Basque coastline, this 3km-long beach has plenty of space to stretch out on its powdery sand. A picturesque promenade spans the whole length of the beach and offers the perfect vantage point over the pretty panorama; there are also cycle lanes. You can watch surfers tackle the waves or take part in sand castle building competitions.
9. Plage de Pampelonne, St Tropez (Var)
This is one of the most famous beaches of St Tropez and the place to be on that stretch of coast. Stretching 5km, the beach’s vibrant colours, from pure white sand to glittering turquoise water, are a definite draw. It’s the place to come celebrity spotting as A-listers head to the beach clubs after disembarking from their super yachts anchored in the bay opposite the beach.
10. La Plage Wissant, Wissant (Pas-de-Calais)
Just a five-minute drive from the Channel Tunnel, Wissant is the perfect detour for British holiday makers. The 12km sandy beach sits between Cap Blanc-Nez and Cap Gris-Nez and is perfect for surfing and kite surfing. Take a stroll along the sand dunes and stop for lunch at one of the restaurants and cafes offering delicious seafood and a panoramic view of the bay.
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