Travel Diary : Saint Jean de Luz

Bonjour guys ! Last week I was in Saint Jean de Luz, on the French Côte Basque. I love travelling, I wish I could discover the entire world. I can’t, neither do I have time, but most important : I don’t have the money. Travelling costs so much, it’s unbelievable ! Anyway, I wanted to write an article about this topic, to share some pictures. To see more photos, check my Instagram account Marion_Raynal (https://www.instagram.com/marion_raynal/). I also wanted to talk to you about the accommodation, where I went, what I did… So if you want to go there you will have some infos.

 

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  • The accommodation :

We rent an apartment for the week, areal estate agency was in charge. It’s called Carmen Immobilier, and it was the intermediary between us and the owner of the apartment. We went to the agency to get the keys, to give them back, and to sign all the administrative papers. We were located just before the sign « Saint Jean de Luz », in Acotz, in the residence called Antxeta. Here are some photos of the flat we rented :

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You can find further details here : http://www.locatour.com/location/antxeta-44301

It was very clean, well equipped  dishwasher, washing machine, cooking tools, TV ( an old one though ), Wifi… But you have to bring  towels and sheets, or pay more so the agency will do it for you. The residence is very calm, even if there are some campings around. We had an issue with the parking : we were supposed to have a parking place underground, but the owner occupied it with some of his stuff, so we had to park outside, on « visitors » places. We were lucky to find a free emplacement every time we needed to park, otherwise I don’t know where we would have put the car… The agency did nothing about it, which is a very bad point since its their job, and we paid for the damn parking spot.

Otherwise, we were goodly located 2 minutes away from the supermarket, 10 minutes of walk to go to beach, 10 minutes from the center of Saint Jean de Luz, 30 minutes from Bayonne, and like 40 minutes from San Sebastian in Spain.

  • Places we went :

-Saint Jean de Luz, downtown : We started by visiting the city we were in, obviously. Saint Jean de Luz is very nice, clean, not too much people, many shops… My favorite place was « Maison Adam »: http://www.maisonadam.fr, where you can find all the Basque’s  culinary specialties. I am some one who just likes walking in the street, then stop for a tea or fresh juice, and keep walking, stoping in a shop when it looks nice.

-Maison Louis XIV de Saint Jean de Luz : The 6th of June 1660, the King of France Louis XIV married Marie-Thérèse Infante d’Espagne in Saint Jean de Luz. You can visit the Church where the ceremony occurred, and the house where they stayed until the 15th of June 1660. I love history, so I enjoyed visiting this house. The guide was nice and the tour last for 40 minutes. It’s not too long because the House is not that huge, though it’s full of anecdotes. My parents payed 6E each, my brothers and I 3.8E :  http://www.maison-louis-xiv.fr

maison-place-louis-XIV

 

-L’Atelier du chocolat de Bayonne : Ok, if you are addicted to chocolate don’t go there, you will eat all the chocolate at the end of the visit for the degustation ! Basically, this is a parcours in which you learn the history of how chocolate is made, from the   bean, to the cacao powder, then the actual chocolate bars. You can also watch the artisans making the chocolate, there are glasses behind the atelier. As I was saying, it ends with a degustation. Their chocolate is de-li-ci-ous ! And of course there is the shop, so you can spend more money before leaving : http://www.atelierduchocolat.fr/decouverte-chocolat

 

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-Centre commercial BAB2 de Bayonne : http://www.bab2.com. Well it’s just a mall, nothing extraordinary haha. I just bought a beautiful top at IKKS because it was on sale ( it costed les than 50E and its original price was over 120 ).

-Hendaye : Château Atoine d’Abadia et La plage des Deux Jumeaux :

The beach was the beach, but it was a really nice one. There were many people but it was not overwhelming, it’s clean, and the view is beautiful. I even surprised myself going in the ocean ! I thought it would be too cold but I DID IT ! Applause ! It felt so good to swim, to follow the waves…

Before going to the beach, we visited the Château Abbadia, which was my favorite thing from the entire journey. The visit was 1h long, our guide was amazing, she was passionate by what she was talking about. Antoine Abbadie was Irish from his mother and Basque from his father. He was almost everything : an astrophysicist, a writer, a scientific… He was also passionated by travels, in the end he spoke 14 languages ! His castle is definitely influenced by all of his trips, there are Africa, Ireland, Middle East… I will stop here because I don’t want to spoil everything but it’s passionating.
http://www.chateau-abbadia.fr

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-Guéthary et Bidart : We did not do anything specific, there are two small nice towns to walk through. They are like 3 and 5 minutes from Saint Jean de Luz so we wanted to see them.

-Jardin botanique de Saint Jean de Luz : The last day, my parents and I ( my brothers did not wan to come ) went to the Jardin Botanique. We wanted to go out and to walk, to take some fresh air. It was very peaceful to walk through thousands of plants, flowers, trees… There are from all around the world and there are beautiful specimens. We walked for almost 45 minutes, we were alone, it was quite. I was like if my parents and I had this huge garden for ourselves, I liked the feeling. If you want an appeasing balade, this is what you need.
http://jardinbotanique-saintjeandeluz.fr/index.php?id=25&no_cache=1

 

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  • My opinion :

I was disappointed by the weather, I thought it would be hotter than that. I even had to buy a sweatshirt because I only brought t shirts and I was cold ! So my skin is as pale as when I left home… It’s a place of France which I find peaceful, clean and pretty, but I don’t know how to explain my feelings about it. Landscapes are beautiful : there are the ocean and the mountain, flowers, rocks, valleys… There are more houses than buildings so you can see the horizon, there is not a lot of pollution, regional products ( Gateau Basque, piment d’Espelette, jambon de Bayonne, fromage de brie…) and f course the specific architecture of the Côte Basque. But I did not feel « goo » there. It’s not somewhere I see myself living. I did not have the « coup de coeur ». For instance, when I went in Nice, on the Côte d’Azur last year, I fell in love with it ! I was overwhelmed by a feeling of joy. On the Côte Basque it was not the case at all. I was almost indifferent… So it’s beautiful, you should definitely visit this side of France, I just don’t belong there.

 

If you went to the Côte Basque, I’m interesting by knowing what you think about this part of France. Oh, and if you have places to recommend, like « you should go there », tell me, I am always looking for new places to discover. I hope you are all doing great, I wish you a good Summer !

Bisous, Marion. 


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