Located in the south-west of France, Aquitaine stretches from the Gironde estuary (near Bordeaux) to the Bidasoa estuary, forming a 250 km long beach. In a single stroke.
In addition, the sands deposited by the marine currents during millennia and the winds, have built an impressive wall of dunes where we can find the highest dune in Europe. At 117 meters high , the Pyla dune is the most visited natural site in Aquitaine.
Although it is true that its climbing, facilitated by a path prepared for it, constitutes in a certain way a sporting feat , the panoramic view of the Arcachon Bay , the ocean and the forest that it offers us in its upper part amply rewards the effort made.
But returning to the immensity of this 250 km long beach , comment that behind it a succession of ponds and lakes have formed, favoring the growth of vegetation, thus dressing the rounded profile of the dunes.
In the 19th century, to fight against the invasion of sand and dry out the wetlands, the residents of the area began some gigantic drainage and planting works. For this they chose a tree that could withstand the sand and high temperatures: the maritime pine. Today these trees form the largest forest in Europe , with one million hectares.
In the heart of this forest mass, the microclimate created by the waters of the Leyre has given rise to a strange forest populated by giant ferns that can be visited aboard a canoe.