The 16 Best Things To Do in the Landes


Last Updated on 10/01/2023 by Alfred

Looking for a natural destination for your next vacation? Why not go on an adventure and visit the Landes?

Imagine a huge pine forest bordered by the beaches of the Atlantic Ocean… Here you are in the Landes! The crash of the raging waves already sounded in your ears. The Aquitaine Coast is open to you with its sandy beaches that stretch as far as the eye can see: all you have to do is visit the Landes!

You have immersed yourself in the regional culture: a little surfing in Hossegor, a tour to the Landes ferias, then a piece of Bayonne ham. In short, in the Landes, you have all the necessary activities to spend an idyllic stay. Indeed, the choice is vast. So if you are planning your next holiday and wondering what to do in the area, this small selection of the best activities and places to visit in the Landes will help you.

1. The Landes ferias

The Landes is here synonymous with celebration and traditions. Indeed, with nearly 800 days a year, the festival is part of the way of life of the Landes.

The Dax Feria is the most famous. It takes place around August 15 and attracts the whole of France! But the tradition of festivals and holidays extends to all the small villages of the region and lasts all summer. So to visit the Landes and participate in the ferias, do not forget your red scarf!

2. Gastronomy and local products

Welcome to the land of gastronomy and living well! The products of the Landes are for famous. Indeed, landes gastronomy is very rich: the first producer of foie gras in France and inventor of duck breast!

It is also here that great chefs such as Guérard, Ducasse, and other gastronomic personalities have grown up. Among a dozen labeled products, here is an overview of the specialties of the region which will make your mouth water:

  • The fat time
  • The chicken of Saint-Sever
  • The farm duck of the Landes, delicious in magret
  • The beef of Chalosse
  • The Asparagus of the Sands of the Landes
  • Armagnac
  • The floc of Gascony
  • The Wines of Tursan
  • The kiwi of the Adour

3. Surfing and water activities

Have you always dreamed of swimming in the Atlantic Ocean? The time has come! The Landes coast is, in a way the European capital of surfing. Whether for learning or practicing at a high level, the conditions are ideal throughout the year.

If surfing is not your favorite hobby, bodysurfing will not displease you. The principle is simple: float and let yourself be carried away by the rough waves. The vast beaches of the Landes allow you to practice all kinds of water sports, from the most relaxing to the most sporty.

4. Capbreton

North of Bayonne and Biarritz, you will find Capbreton. This seaside resort knows how to crack tourists. Smaller and less known than its neighbor Hossegor, its traditional city center does not leave indifferent.

Walk along the beaches; you’ll find rock pools and maybe crabs or oysters. On the outskirts of the city is the Forest of Gascony. With an area of more than a million hectares, it is impossible to miss it.

5. Mountain biking

With more than 600 km of bike paths, nothing better to visit the Landes than cycling! From the nearest bakery to the sandy beach, there is bound to be a bike path that passes right next to your holiday spot.

Here, cycling is not a simple mode of travel but rather an art of living. So leave the car in the garage and meander between lakes, pine trees, and rivers.

6. The pine forest in Seignosse

Seignosse is the pearl of the Landes. With 6 km of beach, you will have something to keep you busy. The place is also one of the best sandy spots in Europe. And every year at the end of September, a stage of the World Surfing Championships stops there.

But you don’t have to be on fire to appreciate Seignosse! Nature is the DNA of the city and the forest its scenery. Here, pines and oaks are protected from the spray by the sand dunes. In summer, the sound of cicadas and the smell of pine needles take over.

7. The Landes on horseback

Imagine for a moment riding on the beach with your hair in the wind. It’s a childhood dream come true. Visiting the Landes is to discover the ideal destination for horse riding enthusiasts! You will easily find where to take a walk in the Landes forests as on the typical sandy beaches of the Atlantic Coast.

The region is full of sublime places to discover, from the foot to the stirrup. A swim with the horses in the Atlantic will inevitably appeal to children and adults, as well as novices and experienced riders. To enjoy this activity in its entirety, nothing better than trails in the heart of a pine forest or on miles of beaches without obstacles!

8. Biscarrosse

Visiting the Landes and especially visiting Biscarosse is to ensure a perfect stay. With its three lakes, its golf courses and also its hiking trails, everything is at your fingertips. To top it all off, Biscarrosse is classified as a “4-star flower city”.

You probably came here to enjoy the ocean, eat and shop, and you got it right. So get on your bike and off you go for a picnic on the shores of Lake Biscarrosse!

9. Landes de Gascogne Regional Natural Park

Discover the forest in its purest form. Behind these rows of pine trees hides a unique natural environment in Europe and a great playground. Visiting the Landes is a stay in the great outdoors: this is the ideal place for a sporting holiday!

This unique place extends over nearly a million hectares. Then you will find miles of hiking trails, but also bike paths. Meander through the heart of the forest on foot, on horseback, or by bike.

10. Hossegor

Hossegor is much more than a seaside resort. Located in the South-West of France, its beach is one of the most beautiful in France. Moreover, it is considered the capital of French surfing.

The city center is just a stone’s throw from the typical sandy beaches of the Atlantic Coast. It is particularly for its geography that the city is so famous. Therefore, this destination is very popular with tourists who come to visit the Landes.

11. The thermal baths of Dax

Stress, fatigue, heavy legs… or simply a need to decompress? You can’t get any better: with its spas, the Landes is the first thermal department in France.

One of the most famous resorts in the region is Dax. It has more than 15 spa establishments. Complete cure or simple parenthesis; there is something to recharge.

12. The moliets golf course

Visiting the Landes also means soaking up local traditions, and golf is an opportunity. The sandy soils of the Landes make it a privileged destination for golfeu·rs·ses. With a dozen driving ranges and an ideal climate, it is possible to play all year round. What makes the prestige of The Landes golf course is, in particular the three internationally renowned courses located in Moliets, Hossegor, and Seignosse.

Indeed, the Moliets golf course is one of the 100 best golf courses in the world. It welcomes enthusiasts between pine trees and the ocean. The route continues on the beach… the dream!

13. Soustons, the city of five lakes

Nicknamed “l’Isle verte”, Soustons takes advantage of 5 lakes to amaze its tourists. Indeed, the singular landscapes in the heart of the Landes pine forest will not leave you indifferent. Many activities ranging from fishing to stand-up paddle boarding await you.

This cocoon of greenery is obviously conducive to fun. Miles of walking routes are available: there is something for everyone. Soustons also conceal an extensive network of bike paths and greenways. The Ocean is very close; here you are, feet in the water!

14. Mont-de-Marsan, city of celebration and sculpture

Prefectures of the Landes, Mont-de-Marsan is located south of the Landes de Gascogne Regional Natural Park. Although it is known for its ferias, the city also contains a heritage that might surprise you. Nestled between its two rivers La Douze and Le Midou, the historic heart is full of charm.

To discover the sculptures of the two Montois artists, go to the Despiau-Wlerick Museum. Also, every three years, the city organizes the event “Mont de Marsan Sculptures”. It is then a great opportunity to visit the city while discovering the unique facilities.

15. Roquefort, the thousand-year-old city

Although it is not here that the famous cheese is made, Roquefort should not be confused with its famous namesake of the Aveyron. But beware: the Roquefort des Landes d’Armagnac also has many riches.

Ideally surrounded by pine forests, Roquefort offers a perfect setting for a walk or bike ride. In addition, it is difficult to resist the architectural heritage of the city, especially with its beautiful fortress church that overlooks the river and dominates the city with its golden ashlars.

16. The vineyards of Armagnac

Former constituency of the province of Gascony, Armagnac is world famous for its eponymous brandy. This natural region has countless vineyards that illuminate the lively villages of Gascony.

Visiting the Landes also means discovering all the secrets, colors and fragrances that characterize the wine brandy several hundred years old. Don’t leave without enjoying a little tasting!

How to go to the Landes?

  • If you live far away and want to reach the region quickly, it is possible to opt for the plane. You have the choice of landing at Bordeaux airport or Biarritz airport. Flights are frequent and numerous. Thus, a flight comparator will help you to best meet your expectations.
  • Also, you can reach the area by train. Choose to arrive in Bordeaux, or directly in Bayonne, Biarrizt or Dax. The latter is connected to Paris via a direct train: it will then take you just over 3 hours.
  • The bus is also part of the game: about fifteen lines are to Dax and will allow you to reach the region as well as to move there.

Where to stay in the Landes?

To reside in the region, a wide choice is available to you. Indeed, here more than 20% of the dwellings are second homes. As a result, you will easily find an Airbnb to your liking.

In addition, there are other ways to visit the Landes. Opt for camping! Very common in the region, it will allow you to spend a real sports holiday near the beaches. Obviously, if this is not what you are looking for, many hotels are available in the cities of Dax, Seignosse, or Hossegor. To best meet your expectations, perhaps a hotel comparator will be useful to you.

Alfred

Alfred is the author behind the Travelvibe travel blog and is always searching for the quieter, less-visited corners of the world.

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