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Lacanau travel guide

Photo of Lacanau

Visit Lacanau (Nouvelle-Aquitaine, France)

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Lacanau and the nearby resort of Lacanau Ocean - the reason why visitors are attracted here - are on the Atlantic coast to the north of Arcachon, north-west of Bordeaux and on the west coast of the Medoc peninsula.

Explore Lacanau Ocean and beach

France This Way comment: with an endless sandy beach and lots of cafes, Lacanau Ocean is a lively resort that is very pleasant - although it is rather remote from other attractions of interest to visitors

The beach in Lacanau Océan is 14 kilometres long - you are unlikely to reach the end of the sand however far you walk! The beach is great fun for all sorts of family beach activities and a variety of watersports.

shops in Lacanau Ocean

Like many of the beaches along this part of the Atlantic coast, Lacanau Ocean is also popular with surfers - it is reputed to be one of the best surfing beaches in France and an annual world class surfing competition is held here.

The beach is also very attractive and consists of fine sand backed by dunes, and is long enough that you can always find peace and quiet if you venture a little further, although only the central parts are supervised by lifeguards.

Of the numerous resorts along the Cote d'Argent, Lacanau Ocean is among the most popular and most visited - during one tour of the region in mid-May we found that several of the smaller resorts here were still very quiet but Lacanau was already very busy.

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Behind the beach and dunes, Lacanau Ocean is pretty much as you would expect a holiday seaside resort town to be with a main pedestrianised street of cafes, bars and souvenir shops along with all 'normal' facilities, and a nice atmosphere for a stroll.

The apartments and villas behind the beach are mostly quite recent and attractive, and you will also notice one or two villas in the traditional style of the region.

Several cafes overlook the sea, and in the Le Kayoc restaurant (on Plage Centrale) you have a direct view on the beach from the top of a dune which is very lovely, and our lunch was good value as well, which is a nice surprise at the beach!

Activities at Lacanau Ocean

Surfing lessons are available in Lacanau if you want to see what it is like! If you want some time away from the beach or you find that the Atlantic waves are a bit too big for your children to cope with, there is also a very large lake between Lacanau and Lacanau Ocean suitable for sailing and windsurfing and which also has a couple of lake beaches.

Because of the lake and forest setting, Lacanau is well placed for walking, nature hikes, cycling etc and there are numerous marked walks and cycle paths in the region. Horse riding in the forest is another popular activity

We also enjoyed a bird watching trip to the nearby Reserve Naturelle de l'Etang de Cousseau that are organised by the Lacanau tourist office during the summer (note: these are typically only organised one day a week, and often on a Sunday, so if you arrive on a Saturday you might like to check soon after arriving).

There are also an 18 hole golf course and two 9 hole golf courses close to hand in attractive settings for golf enthusiasts: I'm not a golfer but the course in the forest above Lacanau looked evry picturesque! For those of you wanting to learn to surf there are courses available at Lacanau.

View of ocean with bikes and cafe in Lacanau Ocean

Attractions nearby

Away from the beach wine enthusiasts can tour of the Medoc region with its vineyards and wine chateaux.

There are lots of other small seaside resorts to the north of Lacanau Océan, and about 40 kilometres to the south on Cap Ferret you can visit some lovely traditional oyster villages such as L'Herbe and Canon.

See more of the popular Atlantic beaches and resorts

Explore elsewhere in the Medoc. You can find more travel ideas in the Gironde guide and the Aquitaine guide.

See also: 

Photos of Lacanau

Click any picture to start the gallery

  • beach (1)
  • beach (2)
  • beach (3)
  • bikes-cafe
  • blue-house
  • merry-go-round
  • promenade
  • sports
  • tourist-office
  • town-centre (1)
  • town-centre (2)
  • town-centre (3)
  • villa

Map of Lacanau and places nearby

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Visit near Lacanau with France This Way reviews

Carcans

Carcans

Although small, Carcans-Plage is one of our favourite beach resorts in the Medoc

Carcans guide
Hourtin

Hourtin

As well as its long beach, Hourtin also has the largest lake in France with lots of leisure activities

Hourtin guide
Andernos-les-Bains

Andernos-les-Bains

Andernos-les-Bains is a pleasant seaside town on the Bassin d'Arcachon in SW France.

Andernos-les-Bains guide
Margaux

Margaux

The village and region here are known worldwide because of the prestigious wines from Chateau Margaux

Margaux guide
Le Canon and l'Herbe

Le Canon and l'Herbe

Canon and l'Herbe are very pretty traditional oyster fishing villages on the Bassin d'Arcachon

Le Canon and l'Herbe guide
Pauillac

Pauillac

The small town of Pauillac is best known for the surrounding wine chateaux such as Chateau Lafite-Rothschild, Chateau Latour and Chateau Mouton Rothschild

Pauillac guide

... or see ALL recommended places to visit in Gironde

Address: Lacanau, Castelnau-de-Médoc, Bordeaux, Aquitaine, 33680, France || GPS coordinates: latitude 44.9833, longitude -1.08333

Plan your visit to Lacanau, Gironde

Sightseeing & tourist attractions to visit nearby

Market days in Lacanau, France

Regular market(s) are held in Lacanau each Wednesday. (Markets are held in the morning unless stated.)

The French version of this page is at Lacanau (Francais)

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