Europe

20 Best Beaches in France

When it comes to choice coastal spots in France, it’s not all about the Riviera. From the English Channel to the Atlantic, Bay of Biscay to the Mediterranean, check out the top 20 beaches to lure you away from hotels in Paris.

Baie des Trépassés, Finistère, Brittany

Wide, pristine and popular with surfers, Finistère feels like the edge of Europe.

Beach in Brittany – Photo credit

Where to stay: Inter Hotel Le Grand Abbatiale Quimper

Baie d’Audierne, Brittany

Another gem on the Finistère coast, with rugged breakers and windswept scenery.

Where to stay: Best Western Kregenn Hotel Quimper

Quimper City Guide

Grande Plage de Goas Lagorn, Baie de Lannion, Brittany

A protective bay offers lovely shelter at the Grande Plage de Goas Lagorn.

Where to stay: De La Paix Hotel Brest

Brest City Guide

Penthièvre Plages, Saint-Pierre-Quiberon, Brittany

The Quiberon Peninsula is a gem, with a plethora of coastal enclaves to explore.

Where to stay: Mercure Vannes Le Port

Vannes City Guide

Etretat, Falaises, Normandy

Storm a Normandy beach with a cult-like reputation among locals.

Etretat Beach – Photo credit

Where to stay: Hotel Du Palais Saint Malo

Saint Malo City Guide

Plage de la Vieille Eglise, Barneville-Carteret, Normandy

Unspoilt dunes galore make this a hot spot on the Cotentin Peninsula.

Where to stay: La Granitiere Hotel Cherbourg

Cherbourg City Guide

Trouville Plage, Trouville, Normandy

Always a safe bet, Trouville is a wonderful family holiday destination.

Where to stay: Normandy Barriere Deauville Hotel

Trouville City Guide

Plage du Veillon, Talmond-St-Hilaire, Pays de la Loire

The Loire really does have it all. The Plage du Veillon proves that the region is more than just wine and castles.

Where to stay: Mercure La Roche Sur Yon Centre Hotel

La Roche sur Yon City Guide

Argelès Plage, Languedoc-Roussillon

Ditto for Languedoc-Roussillon, where Argelès Plage offers sublime repose from vineyard tours.

Where to stay: Best Western Park Hotel Perpignan

Perpignan City Guide

La Grande Plage, St Jean-de-Luz, Aquitaine

A popular Basque coast gem in Pyrénées-Atlantiques department.

St Jean-de-Luz Beach – Photo credit

Where to stay: Grand Hotel Saint-Jean-de-Luz

St Jean-de-Luz City Guide

La Côte des Basques, Biarritz, Aquitaine

Surf’s up in Biarritz, one of the most reliable beach plays in Europe.

Where to stay: Sofitel Biarritz Le Miramar Thalassa Hotel

Biarritz City Guide

Les Plages, Seignosse, Aquitaine

If you visit Bordeaux in clement weather, book a day trip south to this superb Landes department village.

Where to stay: Best Western Le Grand Hotel Bayonne

Bayonne City Guide

Conche des Baleines, Île de Ré, Poitou-Charentes

For lovers of remote, photogenic sunset haunts only.

Where to stay: Le Grand Large Hotel Rivedoux

Île de Ré City Guide

Côte Sauvage, Poitou-Charentes

The “wild coast” of Poitou-Charentes is for intrepid beach lovers with a thirst for coastal adventure.

Where to stay: Best Western Champlain France Angleterre Hotel La Rochelle

La Rochelle City Guide

Plage de Pampelonne, Saint-Tropez, Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur

Skip Tahiti Beach for another Saint-Tropez jewel.

Where to stay: Hotel Sezz Saint Tropez

Saint-Tropez City Guide

Plage de Notre-Dame, ÃŽle de Porquerolles, Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur

The Côte d’Azur oasis of Porquerolles island is a foremost nature reserve.

Where to stay: Les Residences du Soleil Hotel Les Printanieres Hyeres

Hyères City Guide

Plage de la Paloma, Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat, Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur

The city of Nice is the perfect platform to enjoy a wide range of under-the-radar Riviera beaches.

Where to stay: Hotel West End Nice

Nice City Guide

Plage de l’Estagnol, Bormes-les-Mimosas, Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur

Carla Bruni is a fan, so why not?

Where to stay: Holiday Inn Toulon City Centre

Toulon City Guide

Plage de Saleccia, near St-Florent, Corsica

Corsica is a complete island destination, with rugged hillside villages, upscale beach resorts and exquisite nature to explore. Plage de Saleccia is a standout.

Where to stay: Adonis Saint Florent Citadelle Resort

Corsica Guide

Porto-Pollo, Serra-Di-Ferro, Corsica

Likewise for Porto-Pollo, a first name in beach lore on the Mediterranean island.

Coast of Corsica – Photo credit

Where to stay: Napoleon Hotel Ajaccio

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