The Good Life in Landes, Pays Basques France

Written by on July 19, 2017 in Buying a Home, Property in France

We talk to Mathilde de Saint Martin who lives in Landes in south west France. Landes is one of those places that the French love and foreigners rarely hear of. With 100km of sandy beaches and numerous resorts on the Atlantic Coast; inland there are forests and valleys with picturesque villages and Roman ruins. It’s a hot spot in waiting for expats we think.

Originally from Paris, Mathilde spent childhood holidays at the home of her grandmother in Soustons, Landes where she now lives and works as a local agent for Leggett Immobillier.

What is your house like? Did you need to do a lot of renovation?

My house is the second one I have renovated. Both are old houses located in the same rural area, only 10km from the beach and 1.5km from the town centre. It is a fantastic location, surrounded by fields and forests; birds, squirrels, deer and many other animals live there. It’s very beautiful!

What made you fall in love with Landes?

Soustons is an attractive small town, alive throughout the year, offering an exceptional quality of life. It’s in a beautiful situation, bordered by 100km of sandy beaches, pine forests and lakes. If you love sports and nature then Landes offers lots of possibilities. There’s nautical entertainment, golf, cycling trails, and much more.  And if you love fine food, the weekly markets are where you can buy delicious local products.

It is fantastic to live less than 1h from Spain, at the gates of the Pays Basque and the Pyrenees. To the north, Bordeaux, a UNESCO World Heritage Site is only 1.30h away.

The Pays Basque boasts a huge heritage of traditional villages. The landscape is green and wooded, with hills and mountains. The coastline is beautiful with famous resorts like Biarritz and Saint-Jean de Luz. All year round, the pyrénées offer breath-taking views. Living nearby is great for winter sports or hiking.

In Landes there is a wide network of roads and motorways. The nearest airports are Biarritz, Pau and Bordeaux and the train to Paris takes just 3 hours and twenty minutes.

What would you do on a day off in your area?

This is very much a tourist area. There’s loads to do all year round though much more in summer.  On a day off I love going to the Pays Basque. One time it will be inland, another time Biarritz or Saint Jean de Luz.  Biarritz is a lovely coastal town, famous both for its glamorous lifestyle and relaxed atmosphere. Saint Jean de Luz is a nice old city with a port and a typical traditional architecture. Both are proud of their history and their culture – I love that!

What advice do you have for home hunters in Landes and around?

I went into the real estate field because I love buildings and I enjoy working with people. Finding the perfect home is one of the most stressful things for people to deal with. When I help people buy and sell a home, it can be emotional and one of the most important things I can do is to make sure their expectations are realistic.

To help my clients choose the right location of their house, I help them discover beautiful places in the area that they may not find without a local’s expertise. I connect them with the best local business too which can help smooth their new life.

I tell my clients to be both patient and reactive. Patient because it may take time before finding the ideal home, reactive because if you hesitate when you find the right home, it may be lost. You need to focus on what is essential for you because it is important to know that you might have to make compromises.

Mathilde de Saint’s guide to house styles in the Pays Basque

See Mathilde’s portfolio of properties here

Related Articles

Guide to buying French property

When it comes to finding your dream home in France, our guide to buying French property will really help you. Begin by drawing up the list of things you need to factor into your buying decision. Basic points, such as the number of bedrooms, are obvious. But have you thought about accessibility? If you make […]

Continue Reading

Want to buy a vineyard in France? Here’s how to do it

What a corking idea: how to produce your own wine in France Hobby vineyards can be for anyone – and if you find the right property and are smart about your set up, you can serve up your own local wine to family and friends with no additional costs Does spending warm summer nights in […]

Continue Reading

DIY in France: How to point a barn

So how did you learn to point a barn? My neighbours looked impressed and wide eyed as they spotted me up the local farmer’s ladder, balanced on a timber decking, tapping away at the crumbling stone jointing. But pointing a barn is not so very technical and needs no special courses or experience – just […]

Continue Reading

How to buy affordable property Cote d’Azur France

Many of us think of the Cote d’Azur as a place of dreams that we’ll never be able to afford. It’s where the millionaires go – but we don’t all have millions. However, it doesn’t have to be that way. We talked to local agent Tim Clark about property in the area and discovered that […]

Continue Reading

Guide to house types in the Pays Basque France

We asked local estate agent Mathilde de Saint Martin about the type of housing you can buy in the Pays Basque area and Landes: Traditional basque-style building A “baserri” is a traditional half-timbered or stone-built type of  farmhouse found in the Basque Country in Northern Spain and Southwestern France. The baserris, with their gently sloping roofs and entrance portals, are highly characteristic of the region […]

Continue Reading

Subscribe

If you enjoyed this article, subscribe now to receive more just like it.

Subscribe via RSS Feed

Comments are closed.

Top