Argelès-sur-Mer offers a fantastic combination of town, port, sea and mountains on the French Catalan coast, in the heart of Languedoc-Roussillon-Midi-Pyrénées.
The largest seaside resort on the French Catalan coast, situated 12 miles to the south of Perpignan and close to the Spanish border, Argelès-sur-Mer offers all the joys of life under the sun including leisurely visits to the beaches.
This historically Catalan town, subsequently part of Aragon, finally became French in 1659. The toughest period of its history was undoubtedly the time of the Argelès-sur-Mer concentration camp which was built in 1939, where the French authorities imprisoned tens of thousands of Spanish republicans engaged in the civil war against Franco. These days, the town makes most of its living from tourism and is an excellent stopping-off point on the sunny road to Spain (whose border lies just 18 miles away).
Argelès-sur-Mer is a typical small Catalan town with old ramparts, narrow streets, the 14th-century Notre-Dame del Prat Church and a traditional market where you can hear the melodic accent of the locals in full swing. It hosts a great many festivities throughout the year: exhibitions, craft markets, traditional celebrations, festivals, etc. Head to one of the marina's many restaurants to try some of the specialities of French Catalan cuisine. The long sandy beach that stretches for more than 4 miles along Argelès-sur-Mer's coast is made even more stunning by the Albera Massif (1,157 metres altitude) overlooking it. The seafront also has a pine wood and a 2-mile promenade. Head south in the direction of Collioure to discover the unspoilt natural beauty of Racou. And during your days at the beach, be sure to make time to explore the rocky coves of Ouille and Portells.
There are plenty of activities to enjoy in and around Argelès-sur-Mer: mountain biking, hikes in the mountains, coastal walks, cultural visits and food and wine tasting. Not to mention the opportunity for a quick trip to Spain, which is just around the corner!
Close to the rocky promontory of Cape Béar, with its historic lighthouse, it is easy to enjoy an unforgettable trip to Argelès-sur-Mer, with its beautiful setting of vineyards, the Mediterranean and the Pyrenees! Hiring a car is a great way to explore the town and surrounding area at your own pace. Whatever you do, enjoy your stay!