Holidays in Picardy

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Picardy Overview

Visiting Picardy

Step onto French soil and into Picardy, a northern region etched with hills, rivers and lakes, located just a short drive from the ports of Calais and Dieppe. Whether you’re stopping off on your journey further south or plan to stick around for a week or two, there’s plenty to see, taste and experience in Picardy.

Feel Picardy

Sail over the channel. Weave through networks of canals. Visit Little Venice of the North. Visit the Somme Battlefield. Pause, remember. Travel by steam train. Let out a scream at a woodland theme park. Smell steamed mussels. Spot 250 species of bird. Challenge yourself with sand yachting. Unwind to the sound of jazz. Slide through a glass pyramid. Count 6 cathedrals. See a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Explore Picardy

Sombre history and thriving nature combine to make Picardy an intriguing landscape that holds something new to experience each day. If you fancy getting in the driving seat and exploring Picardy by car, expect to weave through postcard-perfect hills or stumble across that lake you’ll spend an undisturbed afternoon beside.

Travel towards the coast and stop off at the seaside resort of Le Touquet, regarded as the region’s most elegant holiday spot. The town is a living testament to the roaring 1920s and those with an eye for architecture will love to wander past the hotels and restaurants that line the boardwalk.

Further along the coast, you’ll find the beaches of Dunkirk. Whether you class yourself as a history buff or not, a visit to the site of 1940’s D-Day landings or the Somme Valley offers an opportunity to connect with the past like no other.

Places to visit - Sightseeing

Camping in Picardy is always popular with Eurocamp customers, because not only is it close at hand, it offers a real variety of places to see and things to do:

Amiens
More than simply the home of the exquisite Notre Dame Cathedral, Amiens is justly called the Little Venice of the North, and its network of canals and patchwork of marshland market gardens, or Hortillonages, are well worth a visit.

Amiens Cathedral
Work on the gothic Notre Dame Cathedral in Amiens began in 1220, and was built to house the head of John the Baptist, which is still displayed here. However, there are also many wonderful statues and reliefs to enjoy.

Dunkirk
As the stage for the epic evacuation of the British Expeditionary Forces during Operation Dynamo, Dunkirk has a special place in the hearts of many visitors, and the special exhibition at the Musée des Beaux Arts tells the story wonderfully.

La Coupole
This unusual museum occupies the site of the underground city built by the Germans from which to construct and launch V2 rockets against London. Chilly at times, the cinematic and photographic exhibitions make a visit more than worthwhile.

Chateau du Pierrefonds
Guided tours of this immense, moated Chateau are hugely popular. Built in the 14th Century, it had fallen into disrepair by the 1800s, when Napoleon III had it restored to the full, medieval magnificence it retains to this day.

Somme Battlefields
The poppy-strewn fields of the Somme will always be remembered for the terrible battle that took place here. So the Circuit of Remembrance you can travel here is a sombre but nevertheless beautiful experience.

Lille
Lying close to the border with Belgium, Lille is a charming city with a wonderful old town at its centre, Vieux Lille, where narrow streets and cobbled squares reveal a host of stylish shops and inviting cafés and restaurants.

Boulogne-sur-Mer
Beyond the ferry terminus, you will find that Boulogne hides its historic beauty within the walled Haute Ville, where the Porte des Dunes opens to reveal the gorgeous place de la Résistance. The domed Notre Dame Basilica is also magnificent.

Great for younger kids

Nausicaä
With no less than 35,000 creatures on display in an exhibition area of 5,000 square metres, Nausicaä is one of the world’s great sealife centres, with aquariums and exhibitions to enchant the whole family, and especially younger visitors.

Parc Bagatelle
Offering play areas and rides for all ages, Parc Bagatelle is a great family day out, with everything from roller coasters to restaurants right here. Younger guests will also be enchanted by the Wild Cat show, featuring real lions and tigers.

Great for older kids

Aqualud Water Park
This stunning water park lies adjacent to the beach at le Touquet and offers a plethora of indoor and outdoor pools. While there’s plenty for tots here, teens will be thrilled at the range of high adrenaline slides, including the fearsome Twister.

Astérix Park
When you’re looking for a little Gaullish adventure, Parc Astérix offers families with older children a host of attractions and shows, plus rides including the fearsome Menhir Express log flume and the fabled Forest of the Druids.

Places to visit - Activities & events

Watersports
Picardy offers a host of opportunities for sailing and windsurfing around its coastline, with craft and equipment for hire at Chamouille and Le Touquet, not to mention the chance to experience white water rafting and canoeing at Picquigny.

Golf
There are some 20 glorious golf courses across Picardy, offering you not just great golf but splendid scenic views across this peerless countryside. Golf du Touquet is one of the best known, but Golf de Belle Dune and Saint-Omer are also highly recommended.

Horse Riding
You will find many equestrian centres in Picardy, offering you the chance to ride around everywhere from the Bay of the Somme to Crecy. You will also find horses for hire at Conty, Le Crotoy and Naours.

Hiking
Picardy has such a varied landscape and such a wealth of trails that walking here is just one surprise after another. Some of the finest walks are around the Bay of the Somme, though we also love the gentle trails around Chéret and Laon.

Sand Yachting
If you’ve ever fancied trying your hand at this challenging sport, the Picardy coast offers 15 miles of prime sand yachting nest to the Marquenterre Nature Reserve and at at Le Crotoy and Fort-Mahon-Plage.

Unmissable events in Picardy

Amiens Jazz Festival
If you can make it to Amiens in March, you will find yourselves at one of the finest Jazz festivals in France, with performances from one of the most eclectic line-ups you will ever see!

Réderies
Throughout the year in Picardy you will see signs for local Réderies. These flea markets and antique fairs are incredibly popular here, and the perfect place to pick up a piece of French history.

The Somme Poppy Marathon
Every charity marathon is special, but this event in aid of disabled servicemen and women is especially so, as it crosses the hallowed sites of the Somme’s WW1 battlefields.

Places to visit - Eating out

Picardy may not have a famous cuisine, but there are some gems to be enjoyed here if you know what to ask for:

  • Ficelle Picardie – a blend of ham, mushrooms and strong Maroilles cheese come together to create this wonderful crépe.
  • Gigot de Pré Salé – A fine dish peculiar to Northern France, this lamb raised on the salt marshes is very much a local delicacy.
  • Frogs Legs – while you will find ‘cuisses de grenouille’ across France, the Picards are particularly fond of these frogs legs dipped in flour and then deep fried.
  • Champagne – Picardy produces around 10% of all the Champagne in France, and you will find a fine selection on offer in the restaurants here.

Campsites in region

PC011, Guines, Bien Assise, Picardy, safari tent
La Bien Assise | Guînes

Whether you’re on a short stopover from Calais or planning a longer stay, there’s plenty to explore at La Bien-Assise, a peaceful parc that’s set in the grounds of a French château.

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PC012 St Valery, Domaine de Drancourt, Picardy, waterslide
Domaine de Drancourt | St Valéry

Fancy staying in the grounds of a French château? Then why not make the most of a short hop over the Channel and settle into Domaine de Drancourt, a relaxing parc nestled in the gardens of a château.

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Apartments in region

Le Touquet Apartments
Le Touquet | Le Touquet

Between the woods and the sea – Le Touquet is the perfect spot for a rendezvous with France's stimulating and stylish north coast.

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Belle Dune Apartments
Belle Dune | Fort Mahon Plage

Ready to discover an exceptional eco village that’s tucked into a pristine landscape of pine forests, rolling sand dunes and wide, open skies? Come along to Belle Dune and from the moment you swing open those large patio doors, the sounds of nature will confirm that you are in the heart of the French countryside.

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Location reviews

Picardy reviews collected by Reevoo

Overall rating
8.0
Scores 8.0 out of 10 based on 630 reviews
Reviews and scores from the last 12 months.
No score given

Fiona

Perfect for short stays, opal coastline beaches a joy especially if sun is out! Beautiful landscape of rural farming, rapeseed fields galore. Biggest observation, hardly anyone about in towns or on roads- a joy.
Confirmed stay: 10 April 2014
6 out of 10

John

Thorrington
As we in transit we can really only remark on the roads which were fantastic
Confirmed stay: 16 September 2013
6 out of 10

Beryl

Charlton Adam
Only visited Guines. Interesting enough place but only really for a short day trip.
Confirmed stay: 15 September 2013
9 out of 10

Andrew

Littlestone
Great cliff top drive on the d940 road from Calais to bologne. Great views and beachs with fab seaside towns. Not over populated like the uk
Confirmed stay: 15 September 2013
9 out of 10

Kate

Beautiful region - very typical French rural coutryside. Lovely towns nearby.
Confirmed stay: 15 September 2013
3 out of 10

William

Biggin Hill
Didn't see a great deal in Picardy so unable to comment.
Confirmed stay: 15 September 2013
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