Go Surfing in France
France, with its mild climate, half-way between the North Pole and the Equator, lapped by the waters of the Atlantic, the Mediterranean and the English Channel, has become a surfers' paradise.
The surf appears first in the Basque Country, where powerful breakers roll in majestically from the distant north west at Guéthary and Barre, at the bottom of that natural pocket so feared by sailors. And the Gulf Stream, a warm current washing our coasts, benefits micro-climates. That's where the "leash" and "go-home" are invented.
There's surf along the coasts of the Landes as well, where the breakers from the North Atlantic spend their power along the immense sandy beach extending from the Adour to the Garonne.The surf virus catches on fast on the coasts of Vendée, Britanny and Normandy, in the colder waters, towards regions with a well-established maritime culture.
Even the Mediterranean … and the Corsicans can't resist surf mania. Here the surfer has to deal with shorter breakers coming from all parts of the Mediterranean, and winds from the land which are sometimes violent. And why not go and explore the magical coasts of Tahiti, Réunion, Guyana and the West Indies, hot-home to prodigal surfers.
The major ones are: short-board (the length of the board is staggered on average from 1.8m to 2.4m according to the size of the waves to be ridden), bodyboard (a short board around 5 feet long), bodysurf (this is the purest discipline in surf riding, for the bodysurfer slips through the waves, assisted only by a pair of flippers), kneeboard (the board used is shorter than a short-board), long-board or malibu-board (very large board, whose minimum authorised competition length is 274.5m), skimboard (which consists of riding a wave by throwing yourself from the beach onto a very short board, without swerving)...
- On the Basque Coast and the Landes: Anglet ( Les Sables d'Or, Les Cavaliers), Biarritz, Guéthary, Les Alcyons, Lafitenia, Hossegor-La Gravière, Seignosse les Estagnots, Landes, Capbreton-La Piste, Lit and Mixe
- On the coasts of Charente and Vendée: the Ile d'Oléron, the Ile de Ré, Tranche-sur-Mer, Sables d'Olonne, St-Gilles-Croix-de-vie.
- Brittany: From the Barre d'Etel to the Côte Sauvage (Barre d'Etel, Kirminhy, Sainte Barbe, tata Beach, Mentor, Les Crevettes, L'Isthme, Le Fozo, Port Blanc, Port Pigeon, Port Rhu, Port Bara, La Truie, Le Guibello, Le Château, la Grande Plage, la Petite Sirène, Guidel Plage, La Crique, Plage du Loch, Maeva, Fort Bloque, La Piste de Skate, Le Kaolin, Le Couregan, Toulhars, Pic Qui Pue, Gavres, Lines
- In Normandy and Northern France: Siouville, Urville, Spot du Menhir, Fécamp, le Crotoy, Wimereux.
- On the Mediterranean: Sète, Carro, La Verrerie, Le Prado, Les Lecques, Brutal Beach, Beauvallon, Cigaro, Cannes, Lerins, Antibes, Villeneuve-Loubet, Saint-Laurent-du-Var, Villefranche-sur-Mer, Beaulieu-sur-Mer, Menton, La Corse (Cap Corse, l'île Rousse, Calvi, Figari, La Tonnara, Bonifacio, Santa Guilia, Santa Manza, Piantarella)
- In Martinique: Charpentier, Pelle à Tarte...