BOULOGNE-SUR-MER FOLKE­STONE

Living France - - WHERE TO LIVE -

Many peo­ple think­ing of mov­ing to France want to live by the sea. While you might first think of the Mediter­ranean wa­ters in the south or the At­lantic waves in the west, the sea­side towns in north­ern France cer­tainly have plenty to of­fer too. And there’s the added bonus of their lo­ca­tion just a short hop across the Chan­nel from the UK.

Si­t­u­ated just half an hour from Calais, Boulogne-sur-Mer is France’s largest fish­ing port, and as the tourist of­fice states, the town has “al­ways lived to the rhythm of fish­ing”. If you’re an early riser, you can join other lo­cals for a sun­rise walk along the wind-whipped harbour where you will see the town’s fish­er­men bring­ing in their catch which they sell daily at Quay­side Gam­betta. Lo­cals here have first pick from a var­ied se­lec­tion of seafood in­clud­ing crab, lob­ster, lan­goustines and mus­sels be­fore they are trans­ported all over Europe. You can pick up other foodie de­lights at the open-air mar­ket on Place Dal­ton. Tak­ing place ev­ery Wed­nes­day and Satur­day from 8am-12pm, the mar­ket is crammed full of stalls sell­ing ev­ery­thing from fruits and veg­eta­bles to flow­ers, fresh herbs, home­made bread and lo­cally made but­ter.

The sun-drenched south of France it is not, but Boulogne-sur-Mer is en­dear­ingly au­then­tic. Plus, it has rainy days sorted in the form of Nau­si­caä Cen­tre Na­tional de la Mer; one of Europe’s pre­mier aquar­i­ums. Lit­tle ones will love the touch tank where they can stroke sting rays or bet­ter still, take them out to ex­plore the rock pools at the beach. Set on the Opal Coast, Boulogne-sur-Mer has no short­age of long, sandy beaches where the fa­mil­iar cry of seag­ulls, fresh salty sea air and crash­ing waves will make you feel right at home.

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