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  1. France - French
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FESTIVALS, HOLIDAYS AND OTHER ANNUAL EVENTS IN Biarritz

There are a number of festivals, holidays and other events celebrated in Biarritz each year. The main ones are listed below.

January 1: New Year's Day (national holiday)

May 1: Labour Day (national holiday)

On the first of May, it is customary to offer a sprig of lily-of-the-valley to close ones. Many vendors occupy the pavement on that occasion!

May 8: Victory Day (national holiday)

Commemorates the Allied victory in Europe that ended World War II on this day in 1945. Various ceremonies are held around town.

June 21: Fête de la Musique (celebrated nationwide)

Also celebrated internationally as World Music Day, for this festival many free concerts featuring all types of music are held in the streets and at various venues around Biarritz.

July 14: Bastille Day (national holiday)

This holiday celebrates both the storming of the Bastille prison in 1789, the key event marking the beginning of the French Revolution, and the end of the privileges enjoyed by the clergy and the aristocracy. To commemorate the event, a spectacular fireworks display is set off from the Grande Plage, along the Atlantic Ocean. Fabulous!

August 15: Assumption Day (national holiday)

This celebration, still very popular in Biarritz, is marked by the faithful with religious ceremonies and a procession through the streets. The fireworks display is held in the evening, set off from the Rocher du Basta and the Grande Plage.

Third weekend in September: European Heritage Days (celebrated nationwide)

The aim of the European Heritage Days is to open up numerous sites and monuments, many of which are normally closed to the public. A great opportunity for a lovely stroll through the city to admire architectural treasures!

November 7–15: Fêtes de la Saint-Martin (local event)

In tribute to the city's patron saint, these festivities, always full of local colour and charm, draw thousands of visitors each year. Highlights include gastronomic competitions, sports tournaments and a special mass in honour of Saint Martin.

November 11: Remembrance Day (national holiday)

On this day, French citizens gather at war memorials to commemorate the signing of the 1918 Armistice officially bringing an end to the First World War.

December 25: Christmas (national holiday)

During the Christmas season, Biarritz is the backdrop for a magical two-week festival of lights. As night falls, visitors are treated to an enchanting spectacle of innovative and exceptional lighting installations created by celebrated artists, revealing the city's architectural treasures.

December 31: New Year's Eve (national event)

On the night of December 31st, the atmosphere is particularly festive on the streets of Biarritz, with families and friends celebrating the new year.

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CLIMATE AND WEATHER IN Biarritz

Biarritz has an oceanic climate, with mild winters (from December to March) and very warm summers (from June to September), tempered by ocean breezes. The average temperature in the winter is 8°C (46°F), considerably higher than the national average for France, while in summer it reaches 20°C (68°F). The weather can turn stormy occasionally throughout the year. Although these storms can be very violent, they are generally short-lir />

Month Min. Average Temperature (°C/F°) Max. Average Temperature (°C/F°) Average Rains (MM) Best Time to Travel
January 5/41 12/54 143/5.6 Not the best period to go
February 5/41 13/55 123/4.8 Not the best period to go
March 7/45 15/59 122/4.8 Not the best period to go
April 8/46 16/61 133/5.2 Not the best period to go
May 12/54 20/68 121/4.8 Good period to go Good period to go
June 15/59 22/72 91/3.6 Good period to go Good period to go
July 17/63 24/75 65/2.6 Good period to go Good period to go
August 17/63 25/77 102/4.0 Good period to go Good period to go
September 15/59 23/73 125/4.9 Good period to go Good period to go
October 12/54 20/68 136/5.4 Not the best period to go
November 8/46 15/59 174/6.9 Not the best period to go
December 6/43 12/54 149/5.9 Not the best period to go
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Biarritz Pays Basque Airport

Biarritz Pays Basque Airport is located about 4 kilometres (2.5 miles) south-east of the city centre.

  • One terminal for both international and domestic flights

Getting from the airport to Biarritz and back:
  • By car
    • Accessible via the D810 road. Travel time is 5 minutes from central Biarritz, and 10 minutes from Bayonne.
    • There are four parking facilities :
      • P1 (short term), EUR 3.90 for 1 hour and EUR 20.80 for 1 day
      • P2 (short term), EUR 3.50 for 1 hour and EUR 19.60 for 1 day
      • P0 and P3 (long term), EUR 18.60 for 1 day
    • Several car rental companies have counters in the arrivals hall.
  • By bus
    • Chronoplus line C connects the airport with the city centre of Biarritz and the train station (line 10 connects the Biarritz train station with the beach at Anglet). A ticket valid on all public transport costs EUR 1.00 for 1 hour and EUR 2.00 for 24 hours.
    • Chronoplus line 14 connects the airport with the Bayonne train station/city centre. A ticket valid on all public transport costs EUR 1 for 1 hour and EUR 2 for 24 hours.
  • By taxi
    • Taxis are available at the ranks just outside the airport.
  • Shuttle:
    • Shuttles ATCRB n° 876: Hendaye / Saint-Jean de Luz airport.
  • Services: shops, bars and restaurants and free Internet access (Wi-Fi) available in the airport.
  • Telephone: +33 (0)5 59 43 83 83
  • Website: http://www.biarritz.aeroport.fr

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GETTING AROUND Biarritz

Buses or rental cars are the best options for getting around the city. And to enjoy the scenic views along the Basque coast, you will want to rent a bicycle!

By car and motorcycle

Cars and motorcycles are ideal for getting around Biarritz. The city has seven municipal parking lots (from EUR 0.50 for 30 minutes and EUR 1 for 1 hour).

By bus

The bus lines that operate throughout Biarritz are very convenient for tourists. From May to September, 2-hour guided bus tours of Biarritz, Anglet and Bayonne are offered.

In addition, several free shuttle services are offered in Biarritz:

  • City Centre shuttle
    • Monday to Saturday
    • Shuttles run every 10 minutes from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.
  • Saint-Charles/Milady shuttle (connects the city centre with the beaches from July 13 to August 30)
    • Monday to Saturday
    • Shuttles run every 25 minutes from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.
  • Côte des Basques shuttle (from June 28 to August 30)
    • Saturday, Sunday and holidays between September 5-27
    • Shuttles run every 15 minutes from 10:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

By bicycle

Bicycles are also an excellent choice for exploring Biarritz. Several bike rental shops are dotted around the city. For those with a bit less stamina, it is even possible to rent electric bicycles!

On foot

As Biarritz does not cover a very large area, it is also delightful to discover on foot.

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Visitor information

Upon your arrival in Biarritz, you can get in touch with local tourism professionals for further information and to help organise your stay.

Biarritz Tourist Office

Offers practical information and useful recommendations (accommodation, restaurants, public transport, festivals, cultural events, etc.).

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Currency and Exchange Rates

The currency used in France is the Euro (EUR).

HKD 1 = EUR 0.12

EUR 1 = HKD 8.33

The above exchange rate is given for information because is variable.

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Medical information

See your doctor before you travel. It is also recommended to take out insurance covering medical expenses and repatriation before your trip. Biarritz counts several hospitals and medical institutions, as well as quality medical practitioners and health specialists.

Vaccinations

There are no vaccination requirements for visitors to France.

For more information, contact Air France's international vaccination centre:

  • Address: 38, quai de Jemmapes, 75010 Paris
  • Website: www.vaccinations-airfrance.fr
  • Telephone: +33 (0)1 43 17 22 00
  • To make a vaccination appointment:
    • online (click here)
    • call the centre at +33 (0)1 43 17 22 00

Food safety

There are no specific food safety risks. French government authorities promote good hygiene practices and put in place strengthened control procedures for sites especially frequented by tourists during the summer months.

Water

Tap water is safe to drink in Biarritz.

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Administrative formalities

As a general rule, a visa is required to enter France. Foreign nationals in the two categories listed below are not required to carry a visa for stays of 90 days or less:

  • Citizens of the European Union (EU), the European Economic Area (EEA) or the Swiss Confederation
  • Citizens or nationals of certain foreign countries.
      For stays of more than 90 days, a long-stay visa is required.

Travellers from all other countries must be in possession of a visa, regardless of the length of their stay. Visa applications must be submitted to the nearest French Embassy or French Consulate in the country of permanent residence well in advance of departure. For further information, visit the website of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs: http://www.diplomatie.gouv.fr/en/coming-to-france/getting-a-visa/

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Useful addresses

Directory of foreign embassies and consulates in France

Contact information for the embassies and consulates of your country is accessible in the directory of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs: www.diplomatie.gouv.fr/fr/le-ministere-et-son-reseau/annuaires-des-ambassades-et-consulats-etrangers-en-france

To enjoy peace of mind during your stay in Biarritz, visit the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of your country.

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Essential phrases

Here are a few basic French phrases that will make your stay in Biarritz a little easier:

Hello / Good morning / Good afternoon: Bonjour (morning) Hello / Good morning / Good afternoon: <em>Bonjour (morning)</em>

Good evening: Bonsoir Good evening: <em>Bonsoir</em>

Goodbye: Au revoir Goodbye: <em>Au revoir</em>

Yes: Oui Yes: <em>Oui</em>

No: Non No: <em>Non</em>

No, thank you: Non, merci No, thank you: <em>Non, merci</em>

Thank you very much: Merci beaucoup Thank you very much: <em>Merci beaucoup</em>

Please: S'il vous plaît Please: <em>S'il vous plaît</em>

I don't understand: Je ne comprends pas I don't understand: <em>Je ne comprends pas</em>

Could you repeat ?: Pouvez-vous répéter ? Could you repeat ?: <em>Pouvez-vous répéter ?</e/>

What time is it ?: Quelle heure est-il ? What time is it ?: <em>Quelle heure est-il ?</em>

Sorry: Pardon
Excuse me: Excusez-moi Sorry: <em>Pardon</em><br />
Excuse me: <em>Excusez-moi</em>

Airport: Aéroport Airport: <em>Aéroport</em>

Train station: Gare Train station: <em>Gare</em>

Taxi: Taxi Taxi: <em>Taxi</em>

Hotel: Hôtel Hotel: <em>Hôtel</em>

Hospital: Hôpital Hospital: <em>Hôpital</em>

Bank: Banque Bank: <em>Banque</em>

Telephone: Téléphone Telephone: <em>Téléphone</e/>

I'm (…): Je suis (…) I'm (…): <em>Je suis (…)<r />

I'm looking for (…): Je recherche (…) I'm looking for (…): <em>Je recherche (…)<r />

How much is (…)?: Quel est le prix de (…) ? How much is (…)?: <em>Quel est le prix de (…) ?<r />

Do you have (…)?: Avez-vous (…) ? Do you have (…)?: <em>Avez-vous (…) ?<r />

Where can I find (…)?: Où puis-je trouver (…) ?br /> Where can I find (…)?: <em>Où puis-je trouver (…) ?br />

Where can I buy (…)?: Où puis-je acheter (…) ?br /> Where can I buy (…)?: <em>Où puis-je acheter (…) ?br />

I'd like (…): Je voudrais (…) I'd like (…): <em>Je voudrais (…)<r />

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Good to know

+33
+ phone number (without 0)
-6 : 00
of time difference with
Hong Kong
Start of daylight saving time: last Sunday in March
End of daylight saving time: last Sunday in October

BANKS

Usually open Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
GOVERNMENT OFFICES

Usually open Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. to 5 p.m.
230 V / 50 Hz

Tipping
In Biarritz like elsewhere in France, a service charge is always included in the bill. If you are particularly pleased with the service, you may certainly leave a few extra euros on the table. But this additional tip is neither expected nor necessary.

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