You know those places that everyone knows, but you simply ignored existed? Does this happen to you? No? Then it’s only me. La Baie de Somme. You are nodding your head saying ‘bien sure!’ … while for us it was more ‘kesako?’ Well, it only took us a long weekend to fall in love with la Baie de Somme!
This summer we packed our car (actually it looked more like we packed our lives … but I guess that is what normal looks like these days with a toddler) and set off direction France. About 3h later we were in Somme, one of France’s northern departement and our extra long weekend began.
La Baie de Somme offers a mix of marshland, long and windy beaches, salt meadows, photogenic fishermen villages, and of course great food. We are in France after all. The great part about this area? It is unbelievably child friendly. There are kilometres and kilometres of sandy beaches. The towns, although quite touristy, tend to be easy to navigate. The restaurants seems to be used to (loud) families having lunch or dinner (yey for high chairs!).
As per usual, our stay in la Baie de Somme was a mix of resort visits combined with market strolls, toddler friendly activities, and foodie discoveries. Lots and lots of foodie discoveries. The weather was hit and miss so we divided our time between beach days and more sheltered days, perfect to discover what the area has to offer.
Resorts in la Baie de Somme
In no particular order we visited Le Crotoy which is a quaint little village, filled with very nice restaurants and souvenir shops. We stopped in Saint Valerie sur Somme for lunch and a stroll along the seafront and the medieval town centre. I wish we would have stayed longer as the town has a lot of charm. On the most windy, grey and rainy day we were in Cayeux-sur-Mer. Oh was it cold! Purely to satisfy my instagram addiction, we drove to Mer-les-Bains, which has its eerie ghost town charm. And we left Amiens for another time …
Toddler friendly activities
With an over energetic toddler, we planned an activity every day. Exhausted parents? Check. Exhausted toddler? Check. Everyone happy? Check. We went to the beach and collected sea shells. We went to visit donkeys and more unusually, snails. We took a day trip to Nausicaa. Not technically in Somme, Nausicaa is worth the day trip. A huge aquatic centre, Nausicaa hosts every possible fish variety, offers a classic sea lions show, a tropical forest and enough touch and learn areas to keep toddlers and children entertained. And penguins! Penguins are a major attraction for our family.
First I need to mention the saltmarsh lambs. Delicious. We were lucky enough to stay in what I call close to regal accommodation, which included a fantastic kitchen, so saltmarsh lamb was on the menu a few evenings. Cheese is also never far away in France. We tried the regional mussels (bouchot) and frites (when not in Belgium …). And we had a lot of fish. Although we didn’t go out as much as per usual, we did have lunch in some fantastic restaurants. Our 5 foodie addresses in Baie de la Somme:
- L’Auberge de la Marine in Le Crotoy
- Les Saules in Favieres
- La Cles des Champs in Favieres
- Brasserie des Freres Caudrons in Rue (because we take our love for brasseries to France as well …)
- Au Velocipede in Saint Valerie sur Somme
Convinced? So were we. After finally discovering this area we are planning a return to la Baie de Somme very soon. Do you have any tips? I would love to read your suggestions! What to do, what to see, where to eat … bring them on.
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