Biarritz is a luxurious seaside town which lies on the Bay of Biscay, on the Atlantic Coast, in the south-west of France. One of the most famous areas on the Pays Basque, Biarritz is popular with locals and tourists alike, boasting some of the best beaches in Europe. Biarritz became well known in the mid 19th century, when Empress Eugenie (the wife of Napoleon III) built a Palace on the beach, which is now the world class Hotel du Palais. If you were to buy one of the large and expansive 19th century homes located in this area today, you would likely see titles such as Prince, Duke, or Baron on the title deeds.
Biarritz is a cosmopolitan town with not only magnificent beaches, but also many golf courses and numerous sporting facilities. But many visitors are drawn to this area for the world class surfing. Surfing became popular in Biarritz in 1957 and today, avid surfers come from all over the world to ride the waves. The Biarritz Surf Festival is held in July of each year.
If sun and sand is not your thing, there are other attractions in Biarritz worth a visit. For example, the Russian Orthodox Church, with its famous blue dome is located next to the Hotel du Palais. Other sites include the Asiatica Museum (Asian art), Museum of the Sea (aquarium), the St-Martin's Church (12th century), and the Museum of Chocolate. After the sun goes down, be sure to visit either of the two large Casinos (Barriere and Bellevue).