Winter Barn Owl

Winter Barn Owl
Life's a Hoot !

Monday, August 1, 2016

Pyla Dune

Nature at its best is awesome!
There are the Seven Wonders of the world; and then there are the unspoken wonders that take your breath away;  One of them is
 The Great Dune of Pyla, located just south of
Bordeaux, in the Arcachon Bay area of France.  It happens to be the tallest sand dune in Europe. Also known as the 'Great Dune of Pilat', the sand dune is enormous - measuring 500 meters in width, 3 kms in length and rising to a height of 107 meters above sea level.
Interestingly, the dune is relentlessly moving inwards, slowly pushing the forest back to cover houses, roads and even portions of the Atlantic Wall. The rate of movement is not consistent; some years it moves faster than others. During the last 57 years, the dune has moved some 280 meters.

This may look like I am just standing on a random beach, but it is more like being at the very top of a  sand peak in the desert.  
Part of the fun (or pain), is climbing the137 steps to the top;  

Young and old alike had to take a few breaks, mostly pretending to admire the view, but I knew they were really stopping to catch their breath.  Those who chose to walk up the sand, and not take the steps, tried hard to pretend that they were not about to pass out.....

 Once at the top, the views are spectacular

After spending the morning at the Dune, we headed north along the Atlantic coast to the town of 'Pyla Sur Mer', which sits in the Arachon Basin, to search for a bite to eat.
We found the most charming family run restaurant, Les Deux Chenes, with amazing fresh seafood.

 Before heading back to Toulouse, we stopped at the beach to take a look at the Dune from another angle
The dune should be the 8th Wonder!

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