BEACHES & THE SEA
In Occitania, the preserved Mediterranean
200 km of unspoilt beaches and clean sea! The Occitania coast is ideal for taking it easy and a swim. Unspoilt nature in Camargue, long stretches of golden sand from La Grande Motte to Argelès-Sur-Mer, creeks at Cap d’Agde or on the Côte Vermeille near Collioure: here, the Mediterranean is preserved, guaranteeing you great holidays with your family or friends.
FROM LE GRAU-DU-ROI TO ARGELÈS-SUR-MER
Fine sand, wide-open spaces and peaceful bathing
The waves can be gentle to attractively strong depending on the wind (Tramontane, sea wind or Mistral). You enter the water down a gentle slope, since the continental plateau is wide and not very deep. The deeper waters are over 10 Km from the coast: plenty of room for you to splash about with your family!
Guaranteed holiday weather in Occitania: record sunshine levels, a clean sea (the vast majority of beaches have the Blue Flag label), and water temperatures rising to 24°C in summer.
FROM ARGELÈS-SUR-MER TO THE SPANISH BORDER
Sheltered creeks and small beaches
On the Catalonian coastline, from Argelès-sur-Mer to Cerbère (at the Spanish border), the landscape changes. You can enjoy the sunshine and swim in the sea beside small sandy or pebble beaches. They are often sheltered from the wind by rocks or cliffs. To get there, you sometimes need to follow steep or craggy footpaths.
The waves are not high, and there are no strong currents near the beach. On the other hand, the continental plateau is narrow and sloping: you can find depths of 60 m less than 2 km from the coast, to the delight of fans of scuba-diving.
The Tourism and Disability label is given to sites with facilities for people with reduced mobility (Tiralos, beach wheelchairs, etc.) or visually impaired people (loudspeakers) to swim. Ask at Tourist Offices for more information.
WHAT SHALL WE DO AFTER THE SWIM?
Plenty of things!
You can visit fishing ports like Sète, Le Grau-du-Roi or Collioure. You can stroll through the colourful markets. You can take part in a whole host of maritime festivities and festivals. You can take a walk along the Canal du Midi between Agde and Béziers. You can explore the biodiversity of the lakes along marked footpaths. You can visit the Roman towns, Nîmes and Narbonne. You can take a break on a café terrace on Place de la Comédie in Montpellier. You can enjoy an excursion to Pont du Gard, Aigues-Mortes, Fontfroide Abbey, the Oppidum d’Ensérune, the Palace of the Kings of Majorca in Perpignan…
Cap d’Agde is the European capital of Naturism with 2 km of beaches and a large number of adapted facilities. The eastern part of Espiguette beach in Camargue, and several spots between Maguelone and Frontignan, are also "non-textile" beaches.
SWIMMING AND MUCH MORE BESIDES
Are you a good swimmer? Then whatever your age, set out on an underwater adventure with a minimum of equipment (diving mask, snorkel and swimfins) in spots where the water is shallow and there are no waves. Snorkeling is the ideal way to see the rich underwater flora and fauna along the Côte Vermeille. For your first experience we recommend the wonderful Cerbère-Banyuls underwater trail. You can also explore the rocky creeks of Paulilles Bay, near Port-Vendres.
By car: the beaches are never more than 30 minutes away from the A9 motorway exit between Nîmes and the Spanish border.
By plane: in all seasons the Nîmes, Montpellier, Béziers, Carcassonne and Perpignan airports have flights from a large number of French and European cities.
By train or bus: Montpellier, Nîmes, Béziers and Perpignan have high-speed train services.