Biarritz is definitely a beach town. People are more casual, and there are surf shops on every street. We have been to the beach, and swimming, every day! The waves here are bigger than in St. Malo, and the girls have been discovering the joy of playing in the waves. The weather has been good, sometimes overcast in the morning, but usually sunny and warm in the afternoons.
There are many rock formations in the ocean (similar to the haystacks in Oregon?) and they all have that distinctive striation. Different from the granite on the Brittany coast.
We have been walking around, discovering the city. The festival in Bayonne is ending tonight, and we can already feel like things are quieting down. There are fewer people walking around in the traditional white clothes with red sashes, and there is no crowd chanting going on outside.:).
We are pleased to report that, inexplicably, the Wednesday night we arrived ended up being the loudest so far. Last night, which we expected to be raucous, was pretty sedate.
There are some fancy buildings here near the beach. The Empress Eugénie, wife of Napoleon III used to summer here, and many of the mansions reflect that.
We have been eating well, of course. We ordered take-out pizza from a place nearby. We got Louise to eat pizza with duck magret on it (she said it tasted like bacon). There is lots of sheep‘s milk cheese here, and so far it has been a hit. To transition from St. Malo to here, we went to à crêperie owned by a Breton/Basque couple. Delicious crepes with Basque fillings—it was amazing. This evening we ate at a traditional Basque restaurant, and Claire almost finished her plate! The girls were introduced to fish knives, and we finished the meal with a Gateau Basque, a white/pound cake with cherry jam filling. The parents enjoyed local red wine, and everyone was pleased with their meal.
This last picture is of a sign that is common in France: toutes directions (all directions). We laugh about it when we see it. It means that this street will take you to a main road with signs for wherever you want to go. This one has the Basque translation, like all the signs here.