At the origins of the Landes
The Landes department is located in the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region, in the south-west of France and north of Bayonne and Biarritz. Its history dates back to Antiquity, with the presence of Celtic and then Roman populations. In the Middle Ages, the region was mainly covered by pine forests and was inhabited by pastoral populations.
During the 11th century, the Cistercian monks began to clear the land and create ponds for the breeding of fish. This contributed to the development of agriculture and animal husbandry in the region. The Landes were then made up of vast expanses of swamps, dunes and forests.
In the 17th century, King Louis XIV ordered the massive planting of maritime pines in the Landes in order to fix the sand dunes and thus prevent the advance of the sands. This reforestation policy gave birth to the famous "Landes forest". The Landes have thus become the first region in Europe to produce pine resin, used in particular in the building and marine industry.
The 19th century was marked by the industrial revolution and the boom in logging in the Landes. Railroads were developed to facilitate the transportation of timber, and many sawmills were built. However, this period also experienced crises, in particular with the appearance of the "febus" disease which affected the pines and caused significant damage.
In the 20th century, the Landes experienced significant tourist development, thanks to its fine sandy beaches and mild climate. Seaside resorts such as Hossegor and Mimizan have become popular destinations. Agriculture and animal husbandry also evolved, with the introduction of new techniques and crops.
Today, the Landes is a dynamic department, combining agriculture, forestry, tourism and industries. The Landes forest remains a central element of the region's economy and identity. Pastoral traditions, such as the Course Landaise and the making of sheep's cheese, are also preserved and are an integral part of the local culture.
The essentials of the Landes
The Landes are a very popular tourist destination, indeed the region offers a multitude of things to do and discover. The Landes are renowned for their magnificent fine sandy beaches which stretch for kilometres. Among the most famous are Hossegor, Capbreton, Biscarrosse, and Mimizan, which offer ideal conditions for surfing, swimming, and relaxing. The Landes coast is in a way the European capital of surfing The Landes are also the first thermal department of France. One of the most famous resorts in the region is that of Dax. It has more than 15 thermal cure establishments: complete cure or simple parenthesis of well-being, there is enough to recharge your batteries. The Landes are synonymous with celebrations and traditions. Indeed, the party is part of the way of life of the Landes. The ferias of Dax and Mont-de-Marsan are the most famous. The Landes gastronomy is very rich: first producer of foie gras in France and inventor of duck breast. Nature lovers will not be left out, with many beautiful natural sites.
Living in the Landes
The Landes are renowned for their preserved natural environment. Indeed, the Landes offer many natural spaces accessible to all. Whether for a walk in the forest, enjoying the beaches or discovering the lakes, nature is always nearby. In addition, the Landes offers more than 600 km of cycle paths, nothing better to visit the Landes than by bike! The Landes benefit from a good infrastructure with schools, medical centres, shops and a variety of services. Large cities like Mont-de-Marsan and Dax also offer cultural and sports facilities.
The real estate market in the Landes is very varied and offers a wide variety of properties ranging from traditional Landes houses to apartments with sea views. There are also splendid villas with swimming pools offering all high-end services. Coastal areas, such as Hossegor, Capbreton, Biscarrosse, and Mimizan, are particularly popular because of their access to beaches and water sports. Towns like Mont-de-Marsan and Dax offer a more urban setting with amenities and services close by.