Get to know the hidden gems of charming Biarritz


Nicole Kratzmann 4 min read | April 2024

If you think Biarritz is a place for old ladies with little dogs, think again…this elegant seaside resort on the rough Atlantic has been a surfing hot spot since the 60’s and offers great surfing conditions all year round. Once a fishing village, Biarritz became the summer residence of the Empress Eugénie in 1854 and has since evolved into a cozy but energetic seaside resort with a unique French flair.

"Grand Plage" of Biarritz, France
"Grand Plage" of Biarritz, France

You can experience this special charm at the hotel “Le Regina“. This beautiful and truly impressive Belle Epoque style hotel, built in 1907, will take you back in time to the beginning of the last century. The hotel is just outside the city center, perched on a cliff and close to the city’s lighthouse. You will feel like you are in a James Bond movie as you enjoy a drink at the hotel’s impressive bar.

Hotel "Le Regina" in Biarritz
Hotel "Le Regina" in Biarritz

Discover the area by talking a walk along the coast

The hotel is an ideal location to begin your day, whether you’re taking a stroll to town or to the nearby beaches. Enjoy a leisurely walk along the beach promenade towards the city center, with the ocean and waves always in view. At the city beach, ‘Grande Plage,’ both locals and tourists sunbathe, beginners try their luck at surf schools, and locals show off their skills in the roaring waves. Enjoy the relaxed atmosphere while catching some sun during a light ocean breeze. Stroll through the old town of Biarritz and admire the impressive mansions from the turn of the 20th century, built in typical Basque style architecture with colorful shutters painted in azure blue, green, and dark red. Occasionally, you may spot local surfers walking through the town center in their wetsuits, carrying their surfboards. It’s a great advantage to have a city with a perfect surf beach right on your doorstep.

Grande Plage of Biarritz
Grande Plage of Biarritz
Beautiful old building in Biarritz
Beautiful old building in Biarritz
Local Surfer in Biarritz
Local Surfer in Biarritz

Perfect location with a stunning view of the sea

Continue walking along the beach promenade and pass the small fishermen’s harbor with local seafood restaurants serving fresh catches of the day, including oysters from the region. Then, reach the ‘Rocher de la Vièrge’, a cliff in the middle of the ocean surrounded by water, and enjoy the stunning panoramic view of Biarritz and the French and nearby Spanish coast. End your tour at the wind-protected beach known as ‘Plage du Port View’ or ‘Arena’ and enjoy the stunning view of the beach and ocean. Additionally, watching the sunset on the cliffs behind the lighthouse at the north end of Biarritz is a real insider tip. Although the path to get there is closed off, locals climb over the barriers, and we follow suit. Enjoy a bottle of local red or rose wine while taking in an incredible sunset.

'Rocher de la Vièrge' in Biarritz
'Rocher de la Vièrge' in Biarritz
'Plage du Port View' in Biarritz
'Plage du Port View' in Biarritz
Lighthouse of Biarritz
Lighthouse of Biarritz

Taste French cuisine at a local market

A visit to the local market hall ‘Les Halles‘ in the city center is highly recommended. Every morning until early afternoon, stands sell typical French and regional Basque food specialties, as well as regional ceramics and clothing. After shopping at the market, one can enjoy a typical Basque lunch and local wine at one of the many bars, brasseries, and restaurants around the market hall while observing the scene. If you missed lunch, finding good food can be a challenge as many places stop serving (except for French fries) between 14:30 and 19:00.

So maybe ‘Extola Bibi‘, a cool little snack bar with a breathtaking view of the famous Côte des Basques in Biarritz, could be a viable option. Start your day with a morning coffee, take a lunch break under the tamarisk trees or enjoy an aperitif while watching the locals play boules until the sun goes down.

Les Halles - local market of Biarritz
Les Halles - local market of Biarritz
Bar Extola Bibi in Biarritz
Bar Extola Bibi in Biarritz
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2B Local Tip: Try some fresh oysters

Try some fresh oysters while you are on the French Atlantic coast. The best fresh oysters can be found at ‘Chez Albert‘, a well-established restaurant located on the waterfront in Biarritz.

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