Baie de la Somme, near Abbeville (northern French coast, Picardie, north of Dieppe)
About 13 or 14K
Why do it
The north of France may seem a long way to go for an hour or so of running, but youve almost certainly never run a race like this one. It traverses one of the most beautiful bays at low tide, over sand of varying texture, with occasional waves lapping over your laces. The 13 or 14K as the seagull flies will seem more like a half-marathon effort. Some wading up to your knees through muddy inlets is also not out of the question, with a brisk sea breeze howling down the beach. This classic finishes with a 5km loop in the town of St Valéry sur Somme, to the applause and encouragement of several thousand spectators.
Sport et Tourisme en Baie de Somme, 80230 Saint Valery sur Somme, France; e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
; web www.transbaie.com
Races starts at 2pm. Showers are, thankfully, provided.
By road if you take the ferry to Dieppe, its the D925 north, then the D940 to the bay town of St Valéry sur Somme. Alternatively, you can take the ferry to Calais or Boulogne and go south along the D940. By rail the nearest station (5km away) is at Noyelles sur Mer from Calais. By air fly to Paris, and then drive or take the train.
Where to stay
Contact the Office du Tourisme; tel 00 33 322 60 93 50.
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