The beach I went to this weekend is called Port Leucate (Poor Lew-Cot), a small community on the Mediterranean about an hour from the Spanish border.
Being close to the Spanish border means the town is also close to the Pyrénées Mountains (the mountain range dividing Spain and France). When the weather is clear the mountains dominate the skyline, but of course, it was cloudy while I was there. You can still see the mountains in the distance in these pictures.
As you can imagine, being so close to a mountain range, the coast close to the border has many cliffs. Port Leucate has one too, and we went to the top for some amazing views.
Even on an overcast day, the water is so clear you can see to the bottom from the top of the cliff.
Back in the day, people used to live on top of the cliff. Why you would want to walk on sharp rocks and worry about being blown off all day is beyond me (the wind is strong up there), but it was the lack of fresh water that eventually led to the abandonment of the houses.
One advantage of living on the cliff is there is certainly no lack of stones with which to build. Fences that no longer define anything criss-cross the sloping back of the cliff.
The ruins give an eerie feeling to the cliff.
Port Leucate is situated on a strip of land between the sea and a bay. The bay is filled with oysters (and flamingos! no pictures of them unfortunately) and you can buy oysters straight from the bay at the equivalent of an oyster strip mall.
There’s also a nudist colony! Don’t worry, the high fence keeps ’em in.
Port Leucate is part of the bigger, and older, Leucate community.
Port Leucate gets its name from, what else, its port.
And that, my friends, is the tour of Port Leucate. More pictures from the French (and Spanish) coast to come.