Hourtin to Royan - Retyrement on 2 Wheels 2 - CycleBlaze

June 15, 2018

Hourtin to Royan

Surfies, Submarines and straight velo Route.

June 15 Friday  69kms

Hourtin to Royan 

Surfies, Submarines and straight velo Route.

Wet tent, but drizzle lightens as we pack up. Breakfast at Hourtin Plage, 15 km on. We meet the Atlantic! The sea is a way out and the coast line goes forever. Surf school is prepping a group of youngsters.

Straight on to Hourtin Plage.
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Break under the pines.
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Surf shop Hourtin.
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We still have sleeves and jackets on. Perhaps further up the coast will be more enticing? Meet a Cornwall surfer and a chap from Cardiff. Been living here for some years and love the lifestyle. Air is fresh, blocks of pine forest, straight road again.

First sight of the Atlantic.
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Not a great day for swimming.
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Up to Surlac Sur Mer and Pont Grave to the ferry across La Gironde to Royan. Read the memorial at Surlac commemorating Operation Frankton. In December 1942, the HMS Tuna submarine surfaced and with a reading from the Phare Courdaran, plotted a course for the 5 commandos on board. They were launched in canoes from the sub, and were to navigate up the coast and into the estuary with their limpet mines. The story is described in the book ‘Cockleshell Heroes’ which I recall from my father’s bookshelf as a child.

Looking at the swirling waters of the Gironde as we crossed to Royan, really made us wonder how these commandos managed in their flimsy craft.
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German fortification in this area was extremely solid. Although Bordeaux was liberated until late 1944, the coast was not freed until April 1945.

An ex- apartment block.
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Lighthouse at Verdon-sur-Mer.
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In line for the ferry.
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Smooth 45 minute crossing.
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Royan in distance.
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The ferry takes 45 mins to cross the wide estuary. We chat to a Dutch couple who are doing the route around the Bordeaux region. Royan is a holiday resort but not unpleasant. We find the O of T, the campground and set up in the evening sun. M tests the pool. We eat up all the food.

Clothesline support.
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Walk down to beach past small streets of sweet cottages: two storied, narrow, deep windows, brick details on corners.

Evening walk in Royan.
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Beautiful old villas.
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Some grand old establishments remain on the sea front. We find a Boulanger still open. Eat another pastry as we sit and enjoy the sea view.

Today's ride: 69 km (43 miles)
Total: 1,151 km (715 miles)

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