The dunes of Le Touquet-Paris-Plage are a protected wilderness that inspires walkers and horse riders exploring off the beaten track.

Le Touquet arose from the dunes about a hundred years ago. Since then, Man has left a profound mark on the landscape, but there are plenty of natural spots that still ooze with the atmosphere of the resort’s origins.

The dunes in all their facets

Far from the busy seafront and town centre, the dunes promise curious nature lovers a real breath of fresh air. They offer not one habitat but several, each with its own biodiversity.

While the sparse beach grasses look down on the sea from the sun-bleached dune tops, islets of green dotted with moss, wild flowers and shrubs stretch to the wooded areas of the dunes, offering a changing landscape and, for hikers, a physically challenging walk across the sand!

Along the coastal path

Fortunately, the Canche Bay Nature Park trail has been developed for the benefit of both walkers and cyclists. The sailing complex, which offers a breathtaking view of the estuary, is just a short distance away from the camper-van area. The coastal path starts a little further along.

The coastal path follows the northern tip to the birdwatching hide which overlooks the bay. From there, migratory birds can be observed as well as the seals that doze on the sandbanks at low tide. The trail then heads south along the dunes all the way to the end of the seafront, before returning to the sailing complex. Known as the “boucle de la corniche” (coastal path loop trail), this 3km itinerary takes approximately an hour and a half on foot.

This is just one possibility as there are two other hiking trails here. The “boucle de la pinède” (pine forest loop trail) is shorter, barely 1km (about 30 minutes), and the “boucle de la dune” (dune loop trail) is roughly 2km (about 1 hour).