Family holidays in France
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Messanges, Camping Le Vieux Port

Hot Biarritz

Camping Le Vieux Port was voted the number 1 campsite in the whole of France and also has been awarded a 5 star campsite rating, with direct access to one of the best surfing beaches in France ideal for families of all ages.

Direct Access to Beach – Camping Le Vieux Port

Why was Camping Le Vieux Port voted the number 1 campsite in the whole of France by Michelin Guide and why has it been awarded 5 Stars? Is it because it has direct access to a magnificent sandy beach? Or because of its superb swimming pool complex with 3 water chutes, 4 heated pools (1 indoor), jacuzzis and wave-pools?

Great for Watersports and Cycling

Or its beautiful setting in the midst of a pine forest? Or the sea-water lake, 5 minutes away at Vieux Boucau, and the shops, pavement cafes and nightlife on its shores? Or the freshwater lakes a few minutes drive away at Leon, a must for watersports, with the tracks through the trees of the surrounding forest perfect for cyclists to follow?

Ideal for Teenagers

Or is it the on-site entertainment and discos that make this site ideal for teenage children? Or is it the unrivalled number of activities available: tennis, football, horse riding, children’s go-karts and dedicated entertainments team?

Nearby Biarritz

Or perhaps it is the location? Nestling in the foothills of the Pyrenees near the elegant and fashionable resort of Biarritz, Messanges is so close to Spain that it benefits from the fascination of two different cultures.

Number 1 Family Campsite in France

Of course, it is the unique combination of all these things that make Camping Le Vieux Port the number 1 site for children of all ages, all under a Spanish style climate without the commercialisation of the Mediterranean.

Messanges, Camping Le Vieux Port Reviews
  • Totally relaxing - excellent, well managed site with lots to do but also very close to a splendid small town, Vieux Boucau, which has excellent bars, restaurants and shops as well as entertainment based on the Basque culture and the Landes region.Mr. Jones - Cardiff - Consultant
  • This is our 3rd holiday at Messanges, The new swimming pools are fantastic, the kids spent all day crashing around in the wave pool. Thanks Corrine (Courier) for another great holiday. Hopefully will see you next year.Mr Partagon - Wales - Police officer
  • We were really pleased with the quality of the campsite and accommodation at Messanges. The couriers, Barry and Tecquin, were excellent: very helpful and brilliant with our son Finn who had a wonderful time with them. Thank you!Mrs O'Donnell - London - Lecturer
  • Excellent site, very enjoyable holiday. Carisma reps very helpful and friendly. There was a very strong sense of safety, relaxation and fun at this site. Carisma reps enforced this positive attitude by undertaking all requests in an obliging manner. We will recommend both company and site at Messanges to friends and family.Mr Laidlaw - Edinburgh - Senior Manager (further education)
  • Very enjoyable holiday at Messanges. Our 1st time with Carisma and was impressed. Very clean good quality accommodation, Site reps very good and very helpful and very pleasant. Location great.M Galavan - Ireland - Environmental health officer
  • This is the prettiest site we have stayed on and it's very well kept. The bar is friendly and all facilities very good. The lakes and beaches are excellent and the kids found friends of their ages so we didn't see them all the time! 8 - 18 year olds all had fun.Mr. & Mrs Barrett - Surrey - Accountant

Camping Le Vieux Port at a glance…


Camping Le Vieux Port Facilities

  • 3 Heated Outdoor Pools
  • 3 Water Chutes#
  • 1 Heated Indoor Pool
  • Wave pool#
  • Jacuzzi
  • Bar with TV
  • Restaurant
  • Take Away Meals
  • Communal charcoal BBQ areas
  • Campsite Supermarket & Newsagent*
  • Children’s Play Areas
  • Wifi
  • Evening Entertainment*
  • Internet access
  • Horseriding*
  • Bicycle Hire
  • Tennis Courts
  • Volleyball
  • Table Tennis
  • Football Pitch
  • Wooded Site for Shade
  • Washing & Drying Machines and Irons

*High season only #operates at weekends only until 09/06, then daily thereafter

Campsite Map

Click on the image above to see a large campsite map of the Carisma mobile home positions.

Travelling to France, with the wide range of options and routes available, has never been so simple. So whether you’re looking at taking a ferry, Eurotunnel, flying or using public transport, we’re here to help.

Crossing the Channel by Ferry or Eurotunnel
We recommend a Portsmouth to Caen overnight crossing with Brittany Ferries returning on the 16:30 Caen to Portsmouth. This will leave a 7 ½ hour drive to and from Messanges site.

Ferry Ports Distance from Campsite (miles)
Caen – 450
St Malo – 410
Cherbourg – 475
Calais – 590

Airports Distance from Campsite (miles)
Biarritz – 42
Pau – 78
Bergerac – 170

Train Station Distance from Campsite (miles)
Dax – 22

  • Travelling by Ferry or EuroTunnel »

    With a number of ferry routes crossing the channel on a daily basis, there is sure to be an option to suit all families.  For those who prefer a short crossing, why not hop on the Dover-Calais crossing or for those without “sea legs” can take the EuroTunnel.  We can book these as part of your package, often with huge savings on booking direct.  We can offer advice on recommended ferry routes and driving directions to our Messanges / le Vieux Port campsite.

    St Malo and Caen are the closest ferry ports to the site.  We would recommend catching the overnight Portsmouth to Caen sailing with Brittany Ferries (7hours).  Getting you into France at 06:45, and leaving a 7 ½ hour drive to the site, meaning you’ll be able to arrive on site late afternoon.  You can choose any route for your crossing, and other sailings are to and from Poole, Plymouth, Roscoff, Le Harve and Cherbourg.

    A return sailing from Caen to Portsmouth is daily at 16:30, allowing a leisurely drive up and getting you back in the UK at 21:15, or you can take the overnight return sailing.

    For those who would rather have a short channel crossing P&O from Dover to Calais can offer up to 20 sailings a day, taking just 90minutes.  EuroTunnel also offers a wide choose and offers a journey time of just 35 minutes.

    Which is best for me? 

    Whilst the drive time from Caen and St Malo to the campsite is around 2hours shorter than that of Calais, crossings to Calais can offer large savings on the supplement when compared to Brittany Ferries sailings.  So it is purely down to personal choice, whether cost, driving time or travel time is the most important factor.  We’d be happy to offer any advice on crossings.

    Travel Tips

    –              Check out update Driving Rules and Regulations in France (Link to a page on our site)

    –              Accommodation is ready from 4pm on day of arrival.  If you’re early you’re welcome to use on site facilities until it’s ready

    –              Remember the time difference – France is 1 hour ahead of us.

    –              Heavy Duty Lorry’s are banned from the roads in France on Sunday

  • Fly Drive »

    With more and more flights to France from the UK being added each year it’s easier than ever to reach your destination.

    Messanges / Le Vieux Port, in the Gascony region, is within easy reach of Bergerac, Bordeaux, Biarritz and Toulouse, all have a number of UK & Irish airlines flying direct.  We are unable to book your flights but are happy to hold your accommodation, without a deposit, whilst you book your tickets.

    Take a look at our guide to showing who flies where to give you an idea of what to look at.

    We do recommend hiring a car as it gives you greater flexibility when on holiday, for day trips, as well making transfers a more stress-free enjoyable experience.  Take a look at our preferred partner who can offer a wide range of vehicles to suit all budgets.

    However, public transport; trains, buses & taxis are available and for further details please click below.

  • Public Transport »

    There are no direct services from the airports to the site, but you can use a combination of train and bus to get to Messanges / Camping le Vieux Port.    You can plan your route using google maps or  The closest train is Dax, which is around 20 miles from the campsite.  From there you can hire a taxi to the campsite.

    Alternatively you could hire a taxi from the airport, which we would recommend booking in advance.