France is a country made for road trips: beaches, mountains, cities, provincial towns, vineyards, and natural parks abound throughout, bringing incredible opportunities for travelers. Without a doubt, one of the most beautiful roads in the country is the one that takes you through the Atlantic Coast, or the Silver Coast.
This road trip takes you through some of the most beautiful natural wonders in the country, as well as some of its most exciting cities. You will explore over 300 km, starting in beautiful Bordeaux and finishing in thriving Biarritz. To get to Bordeaux, fly into the Bordeaux-Merignac International Airport, where you can pick up your rental.
As the city that has replaced Paris as the French capital twice, Bordeaux is nothing short of exciting. Though medium-sized, its large student population keeps it lively and interesting. On your first day, you can walk through Rue Sainte Catherine, stopping at shops, cafes, and restaurants, and head to the Opera. Even if you don’t catch a show, its beauty will blow you away. At night, get to know the local culture by heading to one of the countless wine bars in the city.
Enjoy your second day in the city by walking about its different neighborhoods: see the Arc de Triomphe at La Victoire, enjoy some mint tea in Saint Michel, shop around Gambetta, and have a picnic at Jardin Publique. Of course, it would be sacrilege for you to leave the city without admiring its crown jewel: the Place de la Bourse, a 17th century facade that is a UNESCO Heritage Site.
Auberge de jeunesse de Bordeaux
Same as day 1.
Prepare to head west and see the Silver Coast with your own eyes. The drive to the Bassin d’Arcachon will only take one hour. Start your visit by heading straight to the astonishing Dune du Pilat, the largest sand dune in the entire continent. Once you’ve had your fill of this beautiful landscape, head to the city of Arcachon and enjoy its many beauties. Walk about its parks and neighborhoods, spend some time at the beach, and enjoy a plate of fresh oysters with white wine.
Landes de Gascogne Regional Natural Park
Leave the sound of the waves behind and head to a completely different landscape at the Landes de Gascogne National Park. This expansive nature reserve has evergreen pine forests, wetlands, and rivers. You can choose your own adventure as you bike through the forests, kayak down the river, bird watch, or hike.
Now it’s time to head back to the ocean and enjoy some watersports. This charming small town is known for being one of the prime surfing spots in France. Its sparkling ocean, fresh seafood, and young crowd continuously draws in crowds of surfers of all levels. Chill vibes define its character and you’ll be charmed by its golden sand and colorful waterfront houses.
On the last part of the trip, you’ll drive for 40 minutes along the coastline to get to the party capital of France, Biarritz. Known all over the world for its lavish nightlife, its popularity began in the 19th century, when European royalty started vacationing in it. Today, thousands flock to the city every year looking to indulge in its beautiful beaches and over-the-top parties.
Hotel La Marine Biarritz
Finish your road trip with a bang as you spend your day enjoying some time under the sun. If you want to get away from the crowds, head to the old port and let yourself get lost in its streets. Look for small pubs that others overlook and meet a local or two.
Hotel La Marine Biarritz
Same as day 6.