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Old 09 November 2009, 10:54   #1
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Arcachon Basin - France

We are toying with an idea to tow the boat (hopefully a 6m RIB by then) via the Plymouth/Caen ferry to somewhere on the Arcachon Basin next summer and then have a couple of weeks in warmer waters than the English channel.

Has anyone been there who could offer any recommendations on:
- avoid Caen and use Le Havre ?
- where to stay with a RIB (which isn't vastly expensive) - we were thinking that we might be able to rent a house between two families near a beach
- what levels of paperwork the French will demand to launch & wander around
- if we should just stay away because most of Paris will be there all summer
- if I will be able to anchor 100m off a beach overnight without issues (either from the authorities or joyriders)
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Old 09 November 2009, 12:02   #2
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Sounds a great idea BumbleAbout - but apart from being very envious I can't help you at all - sorry

Look forward to hearing how it goes though

J
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Old 09 November 2009, 12:17   #3
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I'm afraid I don't know the area, but would suggest perhaps using the Plymouth-Roscoff overnight crossing and staying in South Brittany. Benodet is very popular (with Brits) and just across the bay is Ste. Marine which, I think, is lovely albeit a lot smaller.

There are a number of small islands such as the Isles de Glennan which can be reached by rib very easily and the whole coastline is quite interesting.

Personally, I love the area.
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Old 09 November 2009, 17:43   #4
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Its the Bordoux area and its great, i have spent many years at lacanau just up the coast, if its calm its great but its the bay of Biscay and it dose get some mighty rollers comming in
i dont know if there is an inner cruising area because they have a vast oyster bed area . its my favorite place in France. and if you have good weather and a boat then WOW
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Old 09 November 2009, 19:25   #5
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I really should find out about the Bordeaux area, my Mother's family came originally from that region. Unfortunately it's not known to me.

Wasn't that helpful really.
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Old 09 November 2009, 20:23   #6
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Old 09 November 2009, 20:36   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BumbleAbout View Post
We are toying with an idea to tow the boat (hopefully a 6m RIB by then) via the Plymouth/Caen ferry to somewhere on the Arcachon Basin next summer and then have a couple of weeks in warmer waters than the English channel.

Has anyone been there who could offer any recommendations on:
- avoid Caen and use Le Havre ?
- where to stay with a RIB (which isn't vastly expensive) - we were thinking that we might be able to rent a house between two families near a beach
- what levels of paperwork the French will demand to launch & wander around
- if we should just stay away because most of Paris will be there all summer
- if I will be able to anchor 100m off a beach overnight without issues (either from the authorities or joyriders)
I can't particularly help with the sailing around those waters but you might like to consider the following:

1. Check to where any Plymouth ferries go: I don't think they go to Caen.
2. Portsmouth ferries go to Caen but also go to St Malo: further South and a better night's sleep.
3. Check your insurance: mine only goes to La Rochelle which is a little way further North.
4. Arcachon is good for sand dunes (largest in Europe), pine forests, access to wine growing and brandy making areas and Pineau des Charantes and is extensive enough to absorb all the Parisians that go there but is a somewhat boring coastline: as said above the cruising is better further North (Vendee and Brittany) although the Biscay weather still hits when it has a mind.

David
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Old 10 November 2009, 05:40   #8
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Whoops - I meant Portsmouth/ Caen !
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Old 10 November 2009, 07:28   #9
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Portsmouth St Malo is definitely favourite

have a look at www.port-arrachon.com

Although I do not know that part of the coast most commentaries seem to infer that it is featureless

If you are looking at more interesting cruising then as others have said go north to La Rochelle etc

Have a look at Les Sables D'Olone -easy launching, great beach and within easy strike of Isle De Re, La Rochelle, Fort Boyard....

do keep an eye on the swell forecast!!
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Old 23 March 2010, 18:24   #10
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We have been to Arcachon, we stayed nearby cheaply and we have a rib - however we didnt do it all at the same time.
The Arcachon basin is pretty good with a reasonable amount to do although we have settled on Brittany a little further North - see our post - Brittany 2010. Cheers M
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