Opal Coast: What To Visit In Berck-sur-mer?

Northern France is not the first destination that comes to mind for spring or summer holidays. And yet, the Opal Coast holds many treasures to discover. A seaside resort on the Opal Coast, Berck-sur-Mer is one of the most popular towns in Pas-de-Calais. We will guide you on what to visit in Berck and its surroundings.

Go see the seals of Authie Bay

The seaside resort of Berck-sur-Mer is known for its 12 km of fine sandy beach. Just take the Jean Debeyre promenade on foot or by bike to reach the Authie Bay and its dune cordon.

There, you can admire one of the most unusual attractions in the area: a colony of grey seals and harbor seals. Just like humans, they love to bask on the sand and warm up in the sun when the tide goes out.

Note: In Berck, there is an observation point to respect in order to watch the seals without disturbing them. These quirky inhabitants of the bay can be observed all year round, and at certain times, up to a hundred can be counted!

Despite their placid demeanor, these two marine species are formidable hunters. Interestingly, these animals with poor eyesight use their whiskers to locate their prey.

Being in the wind on the beach of Berck-sur-Mer

Did you know that the Opal Coast owes its name to its changing light, which gives the sea different hues every day? Even though the seaside resort of Berck-sur-Mer cannot compete with the intense blue sky of the Côte d'Azur, it owes its fame to another meteorological peculiarity: the almost omnipresence of the wind.

This territory where the wind blows strongly throughout the year is particularly conducive to certain water sports like kitesurfing or land sports like speed sailing (a kind of windsurfing on sand).

On the magnificent beach of Berck, you can also fly a kite or try one of the region's most emblematic activities, I am of course talking about sand yachting! Sand yachting requires large sandy beaches subjected to a constant wind and allows reaching high speeds. That's why beginners must wear a helmet to avoid injuries.

Admire the kites in the sky of Berck-sur-Mer

This town in Pas-de-Calais has also been the kingdom of kites for nearly forty years. Since 1987, it has hosted the International Kite Meetings of Berck-sur-Mer.

Every spring, kite enthusiasts fill the sky of Berck with a thousand colors, to the delight of spectators from around the world. On this sandy beach, the wind and wonder are always present.

You will be amazed by the large static kites, which are true giants of the air! You won't know where to look amidst the multitude and diversity of handmade creations for this occasion...

In another style, the steerable kites offer an aerial show worthy of the Patrouille de France! Maneuvered by seasoned kite flyers, these fabric rockets perform impressive choreographies. If you are a novice in this field, you can take advantage of the Berck Meetings to take a free piloting course or to buy your first flying machine.

Visit the Church of Our Lady of the Sands

The Notre-Dame-des-Sables Church, inaugurated in 1887, was built in the Berck-Plage district to meet the needs of a growing number of vacationers in Berck-sur-Mer. This town on the Opal Coast was already a popular destination for its invigorating climate during the Second Empire.

With its wooden interior framework, typical of 15th-century English architecture, Notre-Dame-des-Sables is a church like few others in northern France. Its walls, made of alternating red and beige bricks, are said to be inspired by… the stripes of 19th-century bathing suits!

This church, where the life of the Virgin and Christ are depicted on murals, is unique in its kind. Its remarkable architecture and interior decor earned it the status of Historical Monument in 1993.

Go to the downtown market

The downtown market, held at Place Claude Wilquin on Tuesday morning, Friday morning, and Sunday morning, is another must-visit in Berck-sur-Mer, especially if you want to discover and buy local products.

The region's flagship specialties are seafood products, such as fresh fish, bouchot mussels, and small grey shrimps. But you can also find other local gems at the market like strawberries, beers, and samphire...

As these different visits will undoubtedly whet your appetite, our last piece of advice is to stop by a brasserie or restaurant to taste Berck's bouchot mussels, a local product from the north beach.

Author: Audrey
Copyright image: PIERRE ANDRÉ LECLERCQ
Tags: Berck-sur-Mer, berck, Opal Coast, wind, kites, market, seaside resort, sand, mussels, This town, Downtown, church, Authie, seals, Pas-de-Calais, spring, France, région, beige, English architecture, Second Empire, climate, Berck-Plage, Our Lady, novice, fabric, kite flyers, Virgin, Christ, murals, taste, restaurant, appetite, samphire, strawberries, grey shrimps, seafood products, flagship, buy local, Tuesday morning, historical monument, architecture, North Beach, patrouille de France, light, Whiskers, species, Observation, tide, Sun,
More informations: https://www.berck-tourisme.com/fr/
In French: Côte d'Opale : quoi visiter à Berck-sur-Mer ?
En español: Costa de Ópalo: ¿qué visitar en Berck-sur-Mer?
In italiano: Costa d'Opale: cosa visitare a Berck-sur-Mer?
Auf Deutsch: Opalküste: Was kann man in Berck-sur-Mer besichtigen?
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