La Côte Basque – Biarritz et St-Jean-de-Luz


You could just tell we were nearing the Atlantic. It seemed as though somehow the streets were lit from within to signal our approach. I looked around every corner to see just how close and there they were because I just felt full of anticipation. It didn’t disappoint. As we ventured down the hills toward a parking spot we noticed nearly every store was filled with white linens or other appropriate beachwear.

We found a great spot that led right out to this beach that feel grand with it’s beautiful bridges linking the land and large rocks that sat on the sand. It was hot, inviting and full of salt and sea air. Before I took much of an opportunity to enjoy the coast I had a mission. I needed a dress for Jenns wedding. I knew we’d be headed to Spain soon and for the life of me all I could imagine was a dress with “flair” if I bought it in Spain. I knew that wasn’t going to typify every dress but I wanted classy and I had said that I really wanted a dress made in France. We hit the main street. I didn’t find too much and I was losing steam when all of a sudden we came across Lafayette which usually I don’t stop in with the intention of actually buying but this time I was feeling desperate for just the right thing and if nothing else maybe I’d find shoes. Dad stood outside to wait for mom and I and I felt terrible we were taking a long time. We started in the designer section but I was sorely disappointed. At this point I’d become rather quick at dismissing something immediately if I thought there was even a hint I didn’t like it. Moving up a floor we whisked through racks and racks, occasionally wishing we could bend the criteria to make it work and then I found two options. I tried on the lighter weight one first and it made it look like I had some kind of growth on my collar bone. Had that part fit right it might have been beautiful but it ballooned out making me look silly. So I tried on the next, creamy, classy and… it fit! Finally, I have a dress!

With a dress all wrapped up and put in the fancy bag we went out to explore, to see the crowded beaches and to enjoy the sunshine. Biarritz may be a bit touristy but it was beautiful and I enjoyed the afternoon.

Eventually we needed to get to our hotel in St.-Jean-de-Luz. Mom was still trying to get her market fix and so this was the stop. It was a small town and probably the most disappointing hotel. It was right close to the Spanish border and it had the whitewashed and red (or green) everywhere reminding us it was Basque country. We wandered for the evening to get ourselves situated and to find a place to eat. This was one of the more disappointing stops, at the time*, and the restaurant though it sounded interesting was no better. Thankfully the morning market was lovely, full of good foods, regional sheep cheeses and we stocked up on bread, coffee, fruits, veggies and all that we needed for a road picnic. Tomorrow Spain!

*Seeing the town at a later date I said “what’s this place it looks amazing” but we had obviously missed a corner of the village so I’m sorry St-Jean-de-Luz you’re probably better than I gave you credit for.

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