The Opal Coast – From Calais to Etaples
A discovery of the Opal Coast with quality accommodations and good gastronomy. In short, the ideal stay to recharge your batteries in a natural setting by the ocean.
By following the Opal Coast, you will discover a course with multiple and sometimes surprising faces, a mixture of large beaches of fine sand and chalky cliffs. While following this path, you will cross sites such as the Cap Blanc Nez and the Cap Gris Nez where the wild nature has kept its rights, you will also cross picturesque and welcoming fishermen villages. Don’t hesitate to come and discover this region, which is unfortunately too little known.
The Opal Coast – From Calais to Etaples is the ideal solution for walkers who love coastal landscapes and beautiful views of the sea: impeccable path, quality accommodation, luggage transport and information on the region. Everything is planned so that you can make the most of the region and its beauties.
Hiking in freedom – Duration of 6 days – Departure from mid-March to the end of October depending on your availability and possibilities.
Arrival in Calais.(Dinner not included) > ATTENTION, the accommodations sometimes open their doors at 5pm (Important if you arrive by train for your luggage).
Calais – Escalles (16 km)
From Calais, direction “la plage – Corniche de la Côte d’Opale”, then arrival at Sangatte. The dunes of Sangatte are very particular dunes located in the continuation of the cliff of Blanc Nez. At the exit of Sangatte: former construction site of the Trans- Manche. You will then follow the customs path to Escalles.
Escalles – Ambleteuse (22 km)
The GR du Littoral continues to the right along the Douaniers path to the Cap Blanc Nez monument (cliff cut into the chalk at 130 meters above the sea). Depending on the weather, you can see England. Passage near the Cran d’Escalles, then to the hamlet of Strouanne before going down to the beach. You arrive then in Wissant. Continuation of the hike by alternating cliffs and beaches until Cap Gris Nez.
We then cross Audresselles, a small fishing village before reaching Ambleteuse.
Ambleteuse – Boulogne (14km)
Still going along the sea, you will cross Wimereux (summer resort), then pass by the Pointe de la Crèche (exceptional view). Attention the Gr is in edge of cliff and we see the damage caused by the erosion and the storms. But if you don’t venture out of the way it is easily passable. Then you will reach Boulogne (big artisanal and industrial fishing port). It is interesting to go to the Upper Town to discover the old Boulogne : ramparts, old houses, castle museum….
Boulogne – Hardelot (17 km)
The exit of Boulogne is made in a harbour atmosphere, fishing industry, artisanal life. Then we go to Equihen Plage (the “quilles en l’air”: typical fishermen’s houses until the beginning of the 20th century). The GR then crosses the Massif d’Ecault (dunes where willows, poplars, rushes and reeds grow), then takes the NATURE PATH to reach Hardelot.
Hardelot – Etaples (20 km)
Taking advantage of the fashion for sea bathing, Sir John Wintley created Hardelot in 1905 on an area of 400 hectares, a seaside resort that combined the forest and the sea. Long beach of fine sand. See with the tides if it is possible to follow the beach, this until Ste Cécile Plage. End of the stay upon arrival in Etaples.
Home : The welcome takes place at the first accommodation, the day before your first day of walking. For those who come by car, free parking is possible in the city of Calais! Please make sure before leaving your car that it will not be impounded after a party where the space is occupied.
Dispersion : Your stay ends on the last day of your trek.
Supervision: hiking in freedom, without guide
Level : Medium. No particular difficulty. Be careful on the paths above the cliffs.
Accommodation : Hotels type **.
Access : By train, be careful, there are two stations in CALAIS : Calais Frethun (far from the city) and CALAIS VILLE (in the center), it is the latter that you should choose (1.5 km from the hotel)
By car Motorway A16, with direct connection to the North European motorway network: Calais-Brussels 2h00. Freeway A16 : Paris-Côte d’Opale 2h00
Catering : Breakfasts are traditional (sometimes buffet style) and are served around 8:00 am. Dinners are usually served from 7:30 pm onwards; they are mostly composed of the menu of the day (no choice of menu in most of the accommodations).
Luggage transportation: Your luggage will be transported between each stage by a carrier at the end of the morning or in the afternoon. We ask you to drop them off in the hall of each accommodation in the morning before you leave for your hike and to bring only one piece of luggage weighing no more than 13kg, beyond which the driver may refuse to carry it. We invite you to bring a small backpack to carry your belongings for the day.
Dates / prices
Departures are possible between March 15 and October 31, at the dates of your convenience and according to the availability of accommodation. Arrival on site impossible on Friday evening !!! (Because it is impossible to stay overnight on Saturdays in Escalles).
Below is the price list per person for the year 2023. The price depends mainly on the number of nights desired, the type of room and luggage transport.
- Based on 2-3 participants: 790,00 € per person (2 or 3 people per room)
- Based on 4-5 participants: 740,00 € per person (2 or 3 people per room)
Extra charge for the SINGLE ROOM : + 290,00 €.
Supplement SOLO : + 120,00 € to add to the price of the Single room
The price includes :
- half-board (except in Calais)
- transportation of luggage between each stage of the walk
- the provision of a topo-guide (1 topo-guide per room booked)
- the tourist tax
The price does not include :
- dinner in Calais
- the picnic lunch
- drinks and personal expenses
- transfers from your home to the meeting point and dispersal
- the return transfer to pick up your car
- cabs to shorten some steps
- Prices are per person
- the tourist tax is included in the price