Dune du Pilat

Dune du Pilat

Dune du Pilat

My main fear about setting off for this tourist destination was “can I take Bella, the dog?”.  I couldn’t find any information on the web that told me whether dogs were allowed or not.  So we set off anyway.  Bella had to come with us, as it would be an all day trip.

Getting to the Dune du Pilat takes about a couple of hours from where we are.  It is a straight route apart from navigating the Bordeaux ring road.

On getting closer we were slightly confused by the use of two differently spelt names for the dune. 

Signs Dune du Pilat

So Dune du Pilat or Dune du Pyla?  In official/historical documents the spelling is Pilat.  For example the official document “Mise en place du suivi de l’évolution récente de la Grande Dune du Pilat”, (Implementation of monitoring the recent developments of the Great Dune of Pilat), (Décembre 2010).

Pilat comes from the Gascon word Pilhar, which means a heap or mound.

The term of Pyla appears to come from the proximity of the seaside resort of Pyla sur Mer, which was founded in 1920 and is to the north of the dune. So the Dune has also come to be called Dune du Pyla.

Good news, as we headed out of the car park and towards the Dune there was a sign.  Dogs on leads are allowed on the Dune.

Dogs on leads are allowed on the Dune

Dogs on leads are allowed on the Dune

Steps up the Dune du Pilat

Steps up the Dune du Pilat

Climbing the Dune du Pilat

Bella , Cal & Ad climbing the Dune du Pilat

The Dune

The Dune

According to Wikipedia, the dune has a volume of around 60,000,000 m³, and is approximately 500 m wide by 2.7 km in length. It’s height is around 110 metres above sea level and it has more than one million visitors per year.

Cal mounts Dune

Cal mounts Dune

Cal descends Dune

No dog on the beach

No dogs on the beach

No dogs again

Bella enjoyed the climb up the Dune and having settled ourselves down for a sunbath on the beach to the other side of it, we were disappointed to be told that we couldn’t be there with the dog.  Shame, long walk back up.  But despite this I would recomend this destintation as a great day out.

Bella digging on the Dune

Bella digging on the Dune


2 thoughts on “Dune du Pilat

  1. I have stayed on that Atlantic coast many years ago – we stayed near Lit – et -Mix which is further south – superb beaches but VERY DANGEROUS CURRENTS – you had to be very careful. We stayed in a little Chalet/house in a forest area.


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