Tips & Trips

Along the Opal Coast

Les Deux Caps, Blanc-Nez, Gris-Nez

This emblematic site was awarded the « Grand Site de France » label in 2011. This provided national recognition for an ensemble of landscapes that stretch for nearly 23km. The site distinguishes itself with its diverse range of landscapes and habitats. More than 250 species of birds have been recorded here, as well as a great many rare varieties of plants. Adding to the beauty of the well-preserved landscapes is the diversity of the area’s-built heritage. Fort Vauban in Ambleteuse, the bell tower at Audinghem, the fisherman’s houses at Audresselles or the holiday villas at the seaside resort of Wimereux, every town or village has its own character.

The Maison du Site des Deux-Caps welcomes visitors with a programme of nature and discovery activities based around the Grand Site. Nordic walking, electric bike hire, departure points for walks and mountain bike trains.

A ride on the back of a dragon

Le Dragon de Calais@Fred Collier-Ville de calais

Monumental in steel and sculpted wood, with a motion that is inspired by that of reptiles, it is truly expressive and breathes fire, smoke and water in a variety of forms. Its eyes, eyelids, ears, mouth, tongue and fins move. He can lie down, stand up, run at up to 4km/h and beat its thick canvas wings. Passengers step onto its back and onto a covered terrace via a staircase that runs along its tail. Every day he wanders along the seafront, carrying 50 people on his back for a journey that lasts around 45 minutes. The dragon then goes to rest at nightfall in his temporary home in the « Ephemeral City ». Installed on the seafront, this is a veritable venue for encounters, meetings and conviviality for all visitors.

Nausicaa, dive into Europe’s largest aquarium

Nausicaa ©Anne-Sophie Flament

NAUSICAA, the French National Sea Centre, is an amazing destination for lovers of the sea, where you can experience the vastness and fragility of the Ocean. Built in the shape of a Manta Ray, the new building, which opened in 2018, houses one of the largest aquariums in the World, holding a staggering 10,000 m3 of water. Modelled on the island of Malpelo, off the coast of Colombia, this giant aquarium recreates the ecosystem of the high seas. An 18-metre-long transparent tunnel offers a totally immersive experience with panoramic viewing angles. A vast viewing panel, measuring 20 metres long and 5 metres high, gives spectacular views for the visitor.

Exploring the chic seaside resort of Le Touquet-Paris-Plage

Le Touquet-Paris-Plage ©Anne-Sophie Flament

This resort is over a century old and carries its age with charm! Beyond the dynamism of its events and sports scene, Le Touquet stands out because of its seafront architecture. At the beginning of the 20th Century, the resort experienced a veritable «Golden Age». The covered market, the newly revamped Westminster Hotel****, the race course, the aerodrome, the town hall, the post office and the Quételart villas all provide precious evidence of this era. A bike ride is the best way to appreciate the architectural elements of the resort.

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