To the west of Bordeaux is the Atlantic Ocean, with over 150 miles of golden sand beaches and untouched pine forests. In the town of Archachon you can visit the Hourtins' Lake, the biggest fresh water lake in France. Near Arcachon is the biggest sand dune in Europe. Take your car hire Bordeaux off to the west to visit this site, excellent for a daytrip with children.
Arcachon Bay, or in French the Bassin d'Arcachon is a bay of the Atlantic Ocean, and a landmark between the Cote d' Argent and the Cote des Landes in the region of Aquitaine. Made popular by locals and tourists for its impressive sand dunes, the bay covers an area of 150 km square at high tide.
The Bassin d'Archachon is actually shaped like an equilateral triangle pointing north, with the southwest corner opened to access from the sea. On the north shore is the town of Arès, then Andernos-les-Bains on the northeast. One major feature of the area is The Great Dune of Pyla just south of the entrance, and is definitely worth a visit.
Known in french as la Dune du Pilat, The Great Dune of Pyla is the largest sand dune in Europe. Located in La Teste-de-Buch in the Arcachon Bay area. Pyla is the name of the closest town, Pyla-sur-Mer.
The dune is about 60,000,000 meters cubed, measuring around 500 meters wide (from east to west) by three kilometers long (from north to south), and its height is 107 meters above sea level.
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