Blustery winter walks on a damp shore wake up the soul for certain but it’s the sultry, summer sand which is the most seductive. Thirty minutes by car from our house and you can feel the warm sea kissing your toes.
Nearly on our doorstep, there really is a beach to suit everyone. If you are seeking the wild and wonderful, drive beyond the Grau de Roi and arrive at La Plage de L’Espiguette.
Six miles of unspoiled peace and never-ending sand dunes; a massive expanse of freedom. Nature at its best, or naturists at their best, at a far, discreet corner!
If you are more inclined towards beach glamour, glitz and comfort, there are numerous private beach bars and restaurants between Palavas (just south of Montpellier) and La Grande Motte.
A long strip of beach, dotted with gorgeous, private establishments which pop up for three to four months of the year. You can hire a sunbed and parasol for the day and enjoy the luxury of waiter service. An icy glass of rosé whilst gazing at the sparkling sea, truly can chase the cares of the world away, especially when the kids (if any!) happily amuse themselves on nature’s finest playground. For those who love the beach but also appreciate a proper toilet and a shower, this is the beach experience for you. When your tummy begins to rumble, whether it’s a fresh seafood lunch you are after, or a special dinner watching the sunset, you will not be disappointed.
If you don’t fancy paying for the sunbed and you’re not in the mood for food, there is plenty of space between the private beaches to park your towel and bucket and spade.
July and August are obviously the busiest time at the beach and roads can be a little formidable but if you choose your travel times carefully, you will be surprised how empty the roads are. When we need a sandy fix in peak summer, we set off by 9.00am and always have a clear ride in. We then seek the shade of a restaurant for lunch and leave before the surge. Alternatively, we head off at about 4pm/5pm, once the heat of the day has relented and go for a late swim and stay for an aperitif and even supper.
There is nothing like the sea air to make you feel you are truly on holiday, whichever beach beckons your bikini.
- In peak summer, avoid setting off for the beach after 10am and avoid returning between 4pm and 6pm.
- Make reservations for lunch and dinner at the private beaches in peak season. You can even reserve a sunbed – try and ask for the front row, for an unspoiled view of the Med. Easier to keep an eye on any little rascals too.
- Some private beaches have live bands playing early evening in time for your aperitif.
- A few of our favourite:
La Paillote Bambou, La Grande Motte – 04 67 56 73 80
La Plage de Bikinis – La Grande Motte – 04 67 56 10 40
Sun 7 Beach – La Grande Motte – 04 67 12 13 69
Yacht Club Beach – La Grande Motte – 04 67 29 29 29
Carre Mer – Villeneuve-les-Maguelone – 04 67 42 06 96
La Voile Bleu – La Grande Motte – 04 67 56 73 83