Apart from luxurious wine, the Bordeaux area is also known for its beautiful beaches. Arcachon is one of the most popular beach destinations in the region, however, there are quite a few other beaches Gironde has to offer. In this article, I want to share my favorite beaches, the ones I consider to be the best beaches near Bordeaux.

My list includes both lake beaches, ocean beaches, and of course the best beaches on the Bassin d’Arcachon. There are many more gorgeous beaches in the Southwest of France but I made sure to include only those that are located within a reasonable distance from the center of Bordeaux. Hope you’ll enjoy the article and the beaches around Bordeaux 🙂

best beaches around Bordeaux in Gironde
Beaches near Bordeaux

*Note: most beaches require a car to get to, click here if you need to rent a car in Bordeaux. Also, my article doesn’t include beaches in Cap Ferret, as I have a dedicated article for that.

Before we start, here are a few other articles you might want to read when you’re traveling around Bordeaux:
Best places to visit on the Arcachon Bay
Day trips around Bordeaux – wine, beaches and villages 
10 day trips from Bordeaux by Public transport

You can also join my Facebook group “Travel in the southwest of France” where many enthusiasts of the region share their recommendations for places to visit and things to do in the southwest of France.

Lake beaches near Bordeaux 

Plage du Lac d’Hostens – South of Gironde

Hostens Lac is one of the highlights of the South Gironde region. Domaine des Lacs d’Hostens is located at the heart of the Landes de Gascogne forest (50km from Bordeaux) and has one of the most beautiful beaches in our area. 

There are actually 5 lakes at the domain but the beach is located on the shores of Lake of Lamothe. There’s also a restaurant and a snack bar next to the beach so no worries if you didn’t come prepared. 

Lac d'Hostens - one of the most beautiful beaches around Bordeaux
Lac d’Hostens – Lost in Bordeaux

This place is much more than just a nice place to swim. Hostens offers plenty of water activities such as kayaks and pedaling as well as hiking trails, mountain bike trails, and more. You can get more information about the activities at the tourist information point which is located next to the parking at the entrance to the Domain or read some of it here.

Bordeaux Lac – in Bordeaux city

If you’re in Bordeaux and prefer to avoid renting/using a car, this beach is perfect for you. Bordeaux Lac has everything you need, a sandy clean beach and a lot of shade from the nearby trees for those who don’t really like the sun. The lake is located in the North of the city and can be reached by tram c.

Bordeaux lac
Bordeaux lac by Lost in Bordeaux

The beach is open to the public daily during the summer (July and August) and starting July 1st it offers water and beach activities such as sailing, kayaking, mini-golf, and more. See more details here. If you’re hungry, you have a really nice restaurant within a few minutes’ distance, called la Ferme de Bruges.

Plage Laouga – Close to Arcachon

Plage Laouga and Plage Caton– Close to Arcachon

Plage Laouga on Lac Cazaux is a fine sandy beach located about 400 m from the main beach of this beautiful lake (Plage Cazaux). Its calm warm water makes it one of the best places for families. This part of the lake is sheltered by the pine forest of Landes de Gascogne, which creates a lot of shaded spots on the beach (a must in the South-west summer). 

The beach is supervised during the summer season (mid-June- mid-September) and has free parking just next to it. Plage Laouga is located about 70 km from Bordeaux. If you get hungry, you have two restaurants on the main beach Restaurant Lauga and Chez Juliette. 

Plage de Caton on Lac Cazaux one of the lake beaches near Arcachon
Plage de Caton – Lost in Bordeaux

Another beach I really love in the same region is Plage de Caton in Sanguinet. This beach is located on the other side of Lac Cazaux, about 60km from Bordeaux. 

La Plage du Moutchic – Lacanau

Plage du Moutchic is located on the banks of Lacanau Lake, about 50 km from Bordeaux. This beach has a nice supervised swimming area, a shaded picnic area, and sports facilities like boat rentals, windsurfing, canoes, and paddle boats which makes it very popular with families from the region.

La Plage du Moutchic - a fun beach near Bordeaux
La Plage du Moutchic by lost in Bordeaux

In case you forgot to bring food, there’s a snack bar and two restaurants with a beautiful view of the lake.  For those who don’t like sand (my hubby including 🙂 ), part of the beach is covered with soft green grass. There’s big free parking behind the beach.

You can also turn it into a nice weekend discovering the Lacanau region, there are a few nice hotels just next to the lake. One of the most fun hotels in Lacanau is called O Lac and you can book it here.

Best Beaches in Arcachon– close to Bordeaux

In this list, I didn’t include beaches in Cap Ferret. They are stunning and worth a visit and that’s why I have a dedicated article with my favorite beaches in Cap Ferret.

Plage Pereire in Arcachon

Plage Pereire is one of the most popular beaches in Arcachon. The beach is located in Ville de Printemps (the spring city of Arcachon) about 67 km from Bordeaux. It’s a beautiful three km long beach with white sand and an amazing view of the Cap Ferret peninsula on the other side of the bay. 

Plage Pereire is equipped with many sports facilities, a cycle path, and green lawns for people to have a picnic on. When coming from Arcachon Center, one of the best ways to get there is cycling. A flat cycle path stretched from the central beach to the Dune du Pyla and passes through Plage Pereire and other Arcachon beaches. 

Plage Pereire one of the most popuar beaches in Arcachon
Plage Pereire – Lost in Bordeaux

On a hot summer day, you can enjoy a cold rosé or lunch at Club Plage Pereire, one of the best beach restaurants in Arcachon.

Le Moulleau beach

Le Moulleau, while officially a part of the city of Arcachon, feels like a completely separate little resort town with its own center, beaches and restaurants. It’s a very popular beach that attracts both families and many young people. 

The Moulleau is located midway between the center of Arcachon and the famous Dune du Pilat which is always a great spot to finish your day. There are a few bars and restaurants very close to the beach so you can easily spend the whole day in this resort. 

Day trip from Bordeaux

You can also take a ferry and check the beaches on the other side of the Bassin at Cap Ferret. The beach can be reached by car, bike, or bus from the train station of Arcachon.

If you’re going to Arcachon for the day check out my guide to the best things to do and eat in Arcachon.

La Plage du Petit Nice

Le Petit Nice is located on the Atlantic coast, south of the Dune du Pilat. It is a long, calm, and beautiful beach which is attracting many families in the summer. What makes it very special is the stunning view of the dune and le banc d’Arguin (the Island in Arcahcon). 

Plade le Petit Nice - a beautiful beach near DUne du Pilat
Plade le Petit Nice – Lost in Bordeaux

The beach has big parking and a descent ramp between the parking lot and the beach for wheelchair accessibility. It’s supervised during the summer. The beach is located about 70 km from Bordeaux, with quite heavy traffic during the summer, so be sure to leave early.

Near the parking, you’ll find two restaurants for snacks or lunch called Restaurant Le Petit Nice and Restaurant & Bar de Plage Chez Aldo. The restaurants aren’t situated on the beach but have a great view nonetheless. 

Andernos les Bains

Andernos les Bains is one of the most attractive beach town on the Bassin d’Arcachon.  It has a cute little center leading to the main beach that is abundant with restaurants, ice cream shops, and beach clothing boutiques. 

While the main beach is really nice, if you want a more isolated and relaxed atmosphere you should continue in the direction of the oysters port and go to the remarkable nature reserve of les Quinconces

A  more isolated beach in Andernos les bains
A more isolated beach in Andernos les Bains

After a short walk from the port into the reserve, you’ll discover a beautiful beach with the forest as your background. This beach is quite isolated so there are no facilities here and it’s not supervised. Andernos les Bains is located about 50 km from Bordeaux.

Plage de la Hume – Gujan Mestras 

Plage de la Hume is a family-friendly beach located in the touristic part of Gujan Mestras, a little town known as the capital of oyster farming on the Bassin d’Arcachon. Its location on the bay makes the water very calm and easy to swim in. 

Plage de la Hume
Plage de la Hume on the Bassin d’Arcachon

However, if you’ve come for more than the beach itself and really want to swim, check the tide hours first. They are changing daily and at some hours of the day, you can barely see any water. Click here for the daily hours. 

The beach is supervised in July and August (from 10:00 to 19:00), which makes it a very safe place for kids. Plage de la Hume is located just next to the ports that Gujan Mestras is famous for, so if you’re getting hungry you can always stop in one of the cabanes on the port for fresh oysters.

Beaches on the Atlantic coast

Plage du Grand Cohort – Lège Cap-Ferret

Grand Cohort Beach is located on the Ocean side of the Cap Ferret peninsula. As opposed to the calm water on the side of the Bassin d’Arcachon, on the ocean side, the waves are strong which makes it a surfing paradise. 

This beautiful white sand beach attracts both kite surfers and families that love to swim in the ocean. In the summer the beach tends to be quite busy and sometimes parking can be an issue so try to come early. 

If you’re coming with kids, this beach is supervised during the summer. This beach is located about 60 km from the center of Bordeaux.

Lacanau Ocean beaches

If your idea for a beach day is a more active one, this is the beach for you. The Lacanau Ocean beach begins right at the end of Boulevard de la Plage at the Lacanau Ocean town, which is located about 55km from Bordeaux. 

Lacanau-Ocean - surfing beach near Bordeaux
Lacanau-Ocean main beach

It’s one of the longest beaches in the Aquitaine area, spreading to 15 km of white sand. The beach is considered a perfect place for surfing and windsurfing and it has become known for surfing competitions and events. This long beach is also a great place for bathing in the sea with your family and has all the facilities you need, including many restaurants and shops in its little center.

There are plenty of other amazing beaches near Bordeaux but I think that these ten beaches will give you a sense of how beautiful and magical the Gironde region is! 

For more places to visit around Bordeaux check out my guides about day trips from Bordeaux by car and by train.

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You can also get plenty of tips on things to do in the Southwest of France via lost in Bordeaux’s social media accounts and email list, check them out here:

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*Note – Some of the links in this article include affiliate links for which I earn a small commission. It adds absolutely nothing to your cost and helps me continue writing about this amazing region. Don’t worry, I’m not getting rich here, I’ll never recommend anything I don’t believe in 🙂 

My weekend list is coming back today with a more modest but still very entertaining list of events and places to visits. We are still in a pandemic mode of course so bear in mind that there are no big events happening yet and that most of the events I’m publishing here will require prior registration and wearing masks. Before going be sure to check the info in the links I added to every event. I’ll also add a few recommendations for places you can visit around Bordeaux in case you prefer to avoid going to events right now. 

If you’re looking for a fun day trip to do this weekend, don’t miss my latest article about visiting Eymet and Chateau Bridoire in Dordogne.

If it’s your first time on Lost in Bordeaux and you want to get more tips about traveling in Bordeaux and the Southwest of France feel free to join my Travel in the southwest of France group on Facebook or follow me on my Facebook/ Instagram accounts. If you want more ideas for things to do this summer in Bordeaux, check out my summer list for 2020. Here’s the list of things to do this weekend in and around Bordeaux (July 24-26). 

Picnic at the vineyards

Like many sectors, the wine industry of Bordeaux suffered great financial consequences due to the recent crisis. To bring back visitors to their wineries the winegrowers of the Bienvenue à la ferme en Gironde association are coming up with a great initiative – a picnic at the vineyards. Every Friday 16 wineries in Gironde are hosting visitors for an event that includes wine and tapas of different local producers at a price of 7 euro per person. The visit has to be booked in advance directly with the winery – you can see the list of the chateaux here

Night markets in South Gironde

Night markets are fun local events taking place in the center of small villages during the summer. This Friday (July 24) the beautiful village of Saint Macaire will host a night market with regional products and live concerts. The market will start at 19:00. If you want to read more about Saint Macaire and other beautiful villages in the region go to my article about the most beautiful villages in Gironde.

You can see the dates of all the other markets in this poster:

Open doors weekend in Sauternes

This weekend (July 25-26 ) four 1er Grands Crus Classés wineries in the Sauterenes wine appelation will host an open-doors event with free tasting, activities and tours. The participating chateaux are Château Sigalas Rabaud, Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey, Château de Rayne Vigneau and Château La Tour Blanche. You can find their details and more information about the event here

Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey, in Sauterens
The beautiful Château Lafaurie Peyraguey

Open doors in Cotes de Bourg

This weekend (July 25-26) the Cotes de Bourg appellation is inviting you to its annual open doors weekend. Around 40 chateaux in Bourg and the towns surrounding it will host you in their domains and offer tours, wine tastings, exhibitions, activities for kids, and more. You can see the list of participating wineries and the activities they propose here.

Friday nights in Talence

Every Friday during the summer Parc Peixotto in Talence is hosting fun nights with music and food trucks. For more details click here. The event starts at 19:00. For more details click here

Halles de Talence - chic market near Bordeaux

And if you made the whole way to Talence you can start your evening with a drink at the market which is one of my favorite places for a Friday apero. If you want to discover other hip places for a drink in Bordeaux check out my article about the best summer bars in Bordeaux

Go dancing at La Guinguette chez Alriq

The Guinguette is a tavern on the right banks of the Garonne hosting plenty of open-air concerts every summer. The performing bands and artists are coming from all over the world and create a laid back world music party atmosphere. You can see their program here. The place is open from Wednesday to Sunday with concerts taking place daily. You can see all the details here

Free beach activities in Bordeaux

This summer (until August 31) Bordeaux Lac will offer FREE activities such as kayaking, SUP, zumba and more! The activities are taking place daily from 14:00 to 18:00 and registration is taking place on the beach starting from 13:30. Please read the content in this link as it includes instructions for some documents you need to present to be able to register as well as the schedule of the daily activities. For more events and activities taking place this summer in Bordeaux check out my article about things to do this summer in  Bordeaux

Visit La Sauvagerie in Arcachon 

Discover the hipster little sister of Darwin in Arcachon. La Sauvagerie is an eco-friendly summer pop up restaurant in Pyla sur Mer with a well-being vibe to it. Besides the cool and slightly wild design, they have a very healthy menu and activities like yoga and capoeira. If you’re going to Arcachon this weekend this is definitely a place to check out. See all the details here.  The address is 2 Boulevard Louis Lignon, 33115 La Teste-de-Buch.

Try a kids’ friendly beach –  Plage De Caton Sanguinet

Plage Caton Lac Cazaux

If you’re looking for a kids’ friendly spot in the Arcachon region try the beautiful lake beach on Lac Cazaux. One of the most kids-friendly beaches over there is Plage Caton which has a huge parking just next to it. 

New Design Exhibition – Playground

If being outdoors is a bit too hot for you, go see a cool exhibition instead. The playground is a new exhibition in the design museum of Bordeaux that is entirely dedicated to sneakers! The exhibition includes more than 600 pairs, films, archive documents, photos, and personal accounts that will tell the story of this iconic object, from its success with New York breakdancers to the globally popular object it is today. The exhibition will be presented at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs et du Design until January 10th. Important note – due to the sanitary situation the number of people allowed in the museum is limited, thus prior reservation is recommended. For more details click here

If it’s your first time in Bordeaux you may also like to read these articles:
What to do in Bordeaux – the ultimate guide
The best areas in Bordeaux – the district guide
Where to stay in Bordeaux – the hotels guide
The best museums to visit in Bordeaux
What to do in Saint Emilion