Lake camping near Boulogne-sur-Mer

A seaside gem along France’s Opal Coast.

67% (3 reviews)
67% (3 reviews)

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Lake camping near Boulogne-sur-Mer guide

Overview

Part-fishing port, part-beach resort, part-mediaeval city―Boulogne-sur-Mer wears many hats. Perched along the English Channel and hemmed in by the Caps et Marais d’Opale Regional Natural Park, this central hub is the gateway to the Opal Coast. Life centres around the bustling fishing port, where you can join the crowds for the morning fish auctions and visit the famous Nausicaá aquarium before heading inland to explore the cobbled lanes and old-fashioned shop-fronts of the Old Town and climb the mediaeval ramparts. Campers have limited options in Boulogne-sur-Mer itself, so check into a beachside campground at nearby Le Portal or Wimereux instead.

Where to go

Caps et Marais d'Opale Regional Natural Park

Stretching from coast to countryside between Calais, Boulogne-sur-Mer, and Saint-Omer, the Caps et Marais d’Opale Regional Natural Park packs in sandy beaches, cliff-top coastal walks, and forested hiking trails. Along the coast, Wimereux, Équihan-Plage, and Hardelot-Plage have the most popular beaches, while inland, the Artois hills and Audomarois marshlands are hiking gold.

North Sea Coast

North of Boulogne-sur-Mer, the port city of Calais is ground zero for exploring France’s rugged North Sea Coast and welcomes regular ferries from the UK. Along the way, the soaring chalk cliffs of the Cap Gris Nez give way to sand and shingle beaches, while further north, the port of Dunkirk is an important stop on France’s World War II trail.

Opal Coast

South of Boulogne-sur-Mer, the wild dunes and windswept beaches of the Opal Coast stretch south to Berck. Check into a seaside campground in Le Touquet, famous for its beach and water sports, or continue south to the Bay of the Somme, where you can walk, cycle, kayak, or paddleboard around the scenic salt marshes.

When to go

The weather can be temperamental along the coast of the English Channel, and the summer months offer the best chance of sunny beach weather. If beach days are optional, spring and autumn visits are ideal for hiking and exploring, and most campgrounds stay open from April through October. Market days are Wednesdays and Saturdays in Boulogne-sur-Mer when the town fills up with locals and visitors.

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