Destinations

France South West in motorhome

Go to the Atlantic coast by rental vehicle, from our motorhome rental agency in Toulouse.


Above all, if you are not a local, take advantage of the few hours before your departure to stroll through the streets of Toulouse. Admire the Basilica of St-Sernin, a jewel of Romanesque art, the Jacobins church and its famous palm vault, the Hôtel d'Assézat housing the Bamberg foundation or the Jardin Royal and the Jardin des Plantes.
Let's meet at the Toulouse branch for your travelling holidays in the South-West of France.

Bordeaux

Our first stop is largely a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Solemn and refined, Bordeaux is the centre of a vast region of vineyards producing some of the best wines in the world. If you wish to familiarise yourself with the history of the city, a stopover at Bordeaux Monumental is a must. A place that talks about the city, its monuments, its history and its future. From the Pont de Pierre, you have a magnificent view of the houses lining the quays. Walk along the Quai Richelieu, pass in front of the Porte de Cailhau which houses the Musée du Vieux Bordeaux and stop at the Place de la Bourse which opens onto the Quai de la Garonne. Here stand two admirable buildings, the Douane and the Bourse.

Following the quays, you reach the Place des Quinconces, a vast 12-hectare square decorated with columns, fountains and statues. It is dominated by a monument to the memory of the deputies of the Gironde. As you move away from the Garonne, the wide tree-lined avenues of the Cours de l'Intendance, the Cours Georges Clémenceau and the Allées de Tourny, form the Triangle, and delimit the elegant centre of Bordeaux life which is full of welcoming shops and cafés. Visit the Place de la Comédie, dominated by a neoclassical masterpiece, the Grand Théâtre. Its façade is adorned with a dozen majestic statues of goddesses and muses making up one of the most beautiful colonnades in the city. To end this stay in Bordeaux, head for the Saint-Michel church, located not far from the river, south of the city. This monument has an independent Gothic belfry which, at 114 metres, is the highest tower in south-west France. Halfway up the belfry, a plunging terrace offers a bird's eye view of the city.

Biarritz

The largest and most luxurious seaside resort on the Atlantic coast. The entire coastline is sumptuous with its white sandy beaches, huge rocks and the crashing waves of the ocean. Biarritz enjoys a mild climate, invigorated by its location between the Pyrenees and the coast. The Grande Plage is the most chic and central beach. The Port-Vieux welcomes a more sheltered one while the big rollers come to break on the Côte des Basques, an annual pilgrimage place for the Basques. All this provides the perfect setting for walks along cliffside paths, amidst lush tamarisk trees and blue and pink hydrangeas, just a stone's throw from an extravagant series of English villas, Andalusian haciendas and Swiss chalets. A footbridge from the Grand Plage will take you to the Rock of the Virgin crowned with a statue of the Madonna from where you will have a superb view of the coast, all the way to Spain. From the top of the lighthouse, north of the Grande Plage, you will discover an even more unforgettable panorama.

Bayonne

Let's continue our nomadic trip, to Bayonne, today, the elegant capital of the French Basque Country. Explore the long narrow streets around the cathedral of Sainte-Marie, begun in the 13th century. Its high nave is in northern Gothic style, rare in the region, and its keystones are decorated with fleur-de-lys. Not far away, the Bonnat museum has a beautiful collection of paintings, including works by Rubens, Poussin and Goya. Bayonne is a good place during your stay to buy Basque specialities: the famous beret, espadrilles, woollen blankets or the tasty Bayonne chocolate. To do so, take a walk under the arcades of the Rue du Pont-Neuf.

Cognac

This port on the Charente is known for its brandy, distilled from the products of the region's vineyards. The town is full of producers offering tastings. Look out for the black mushroom, soberly called "la part de l'ange", growing in the cellars and feeding on the cognac vapours.

Côte d'Argent

The Aquitaine coast has the highest sand dune in Europe, the Dune du Pilat, and beaches ideal for swimming and surfing. The main seaside resort is Arcachon, on the basin of the same name where oysters are cultivated. It is a place reminiscent of the Belle Epoque, with a marina and extravagant villas. Further south are Hossegor and Capbreton.

Saint-Emilion

A fortified medieval citadel : Saint-Emilion is a village of winegrowers with houses of golden limestone. Among the vintages, one finds the appellation pomerol and the famous château Petrus.

Saintes

This stage, in the Charente valley, has a beautiful heritage of Roman and Medieval architecture. The arch of Germanicus, reassembled Place Bassompierre, once stood on a Roman bridge. There are also remains of baths and an amphitheatre. The portals of Sainte-Marie-des-Dames, dating from the 12th century, are wonderfully sculpted.

 

Leaving Toulouse for the South-West by motorhome is a very nice trip, to do with the family. The region welcomes camper vans very well and has many supplies points. You won't have any problem to find good places to spend the night, otherwise don't hesitate to call our partner Home Camper.

There is no doubt that the Atlantic coast is full of things to do and see. Between its maritime pine forest, its beaches as far as the eye can see and its rich heritage, there will be something for everyone! This is just our small selection of activities and places to visit during your holidays on the Atlantic coast. But don't forget, the motorhome offers all the freedom: leave when you want, come and go as you please and from one place to another! So make the most of it! ■

 

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