Calais China lights

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In the coming winter months, Calais will be illuminated with a very special event. Hundreds of light sculptures can be admired in Saint-Pierre park. Matching Asian snacks, drinks and gigs make a visit to the event complete. China Light Calais is a special night out for families, couples, friends and colleagues. From 20 October until 6 January - China Light Calais will turn the Saint-Pierre park into a fairy-tale paradise with over 400 luminous sculptures and fantastic shows. Enjoy the Chinese tradition of light festivals. An unforgettable experience for young and old. Free nearby parking. Easy access and close to the Eurotunnel Calais terminal - just a 10 minute drive!

The Fortifications of Vauban

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France has a rich and, at times, turbulent history. Much of the relics from its past can still be seen, and provide a fascinating insight into life in France, and what shaped it into the country it is today. Some of the most famous of these relics are the Fortifications of Vauban. Built between 1667 to 1707, the Fortifications of Vauban are military fortifications designed to protect the borders of France from invaders. They were upgraded and designed by the Marshal of France and military engineer Sébastien Le Prestre de Vauban, in around 300 cities throughout France. Who was Sébastien Le Prestre de Vauban? Sébastien Le Prestre de Vauban was the mastermind behind France's fortifications, and was widely recognised for his military prowess. Despite also being military advisor to King Louis XIV, he came from very humble beginnings. Orphaned at a young age, he lived a life of poverty, and was educated in science, maths and geometry by the Roman Catholic Order; Carmelite. He joined the army and was eventually put in charge of constructing defences, and received highly distinguished honours. Many would say that his designs and upgrades of France's fortifications were his crowning glory. The fortifications became a UNESCO world heritage site in 2008, cementing his reputation as a military genius. Where are the fortifications? The fortifications are found across the western, northern and eastern borders of France, and vary in size, shape and purpose. They range from mountain and sea forts and communication buildings. Driving to the fortifications with Eurotunnel Le Shuttle With so many fortifications, you can't really just visit one to get a feeling for it. Instead, make a road trip out of it, and drive from fortification to fortification, uncovering their secrets and discover what it was about them that made them so special. For the easiest route from our Calais terminal, drive the western fortifications. Starting in Arras, and ending in Gironde. Western Fortifications of Vauban Arras: The Vauban Citadel One hour and 15 minutes from our Calais terminal Based on the citadel in Lille, this is a beautiful, must-see site. credit: ReflectedSerendipity. It was based on the nearby fortification in Lille, but does have some significant differences, making it unique. For example, Vauban designed it to have counterguards protecting the bastions. Despite it being a pentagon in shape, the internal buildings are arranged in a rectangle. The citadel is built high up a hill (naturally one of the best places to defend a city) so even though the walk up to the top might be a bit of a hard task on your legs, you will be rewarded with a great view. Manche: Saint-Vaast-la-Hougue and Tatihou: Watchtowers Four hours from our Calais terminal The watchtowers are great historical relics, still standing over 400 years after they were built. Along the Manche coast, take a break in the sea-facing commune, Saint-Vaast-la-Hougue and its nearby island Tatihou. Both are home to watchtowers, looking out to sea. These towers weren't actually built by Vauban himself, rather his student Benjamin de Combes. This doesn't mean that they don't have the classic Vauban characteristics, and are still well worth a visit. Especially during the warmer summer months, when the sun is sparkling on the sea. Camaret-sur-Mer: Tour Vauban Seven hours, 15 minutes from our Calais terminal See the guardhouse, big enough to house 11 cannons and discover what made this fortification so special. This is one of Vauban's most impressive fortifications, a three-level defence tower that is protected by walls, along with a guardhouse and gun battery. The battery is particularly impressive, as it can hold 11 cannons. It was designed by Vauban in 1689, and building was completed in 1696. Vauban fought here himself, in 1694 to defend France from an attack from the Anglo-Dutch. Cussac-Fort-Médoc: Fort Médoc, Citadel of Blaye and Fort Paté Eight hours, 15 minutes from our Calais terminal The trio of forts at Cussac-Fort-Médoc are a must-see for every history lover! Near Bordeaux, the commune of Cussac-Fort-Médoc is home to three of Vauban's fortifications. All three work together as the Estuary's defensive system, and if you're after a walking holiday, a great trio of sites to walk between. Bordeaux is a famous wine region, so don't forget to stop at a café or bar and toast to the great Vauban himself! Are you ready to step back into the past and visit Vauban's greatest triumphs? Then get the bags packed, and jump in the car and head off! And don't forget to book your tickets with us early to get the best price.  

Carrefour Cité Europe

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Your Day Trip to France wouldn’t be complete without a stop at Carrefour Cité Europe! Stock up on lots of fantastic French favorites and get rewarded. Carrefour Cité Europe is one of the largest hypermarkets in the region, located just outside our Calais terminal! Make sure you take advantage of this offer and fill up with lots of traditional food and day-to-day items. Load your car up with lovely products from all over France, such as: waffles, flavored coffee, Burgundy snails, cheese, patisseries, chocolates and much more... You can even pay in £ or €!

Le Pain Quotidien Opéra Lille

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At Le Pain Quotidien, everything comes together to make your breakfast, brunch, lunch or evening with friends something special. Situated in the heart of the city centre, not far from the pedestrian area, Le Pain Quotidien provides the ideal environment to share something special with friends or family. It’s the perfect place to enjoy breakfast or to allow yourself a relaxing lunch break in a cosy and friendly atmosphere. At Le Pain Quotidien you can share a table, spend a moment practising your French with the person next to you, meet friends or even build new friendships in an increasingly fast-paced world. Relax and enjoy a healthy and delicious meal in a place where the music blends into the melody of the conversation and the smell of freshly cooked food stirs the imagination.  

Driving to Calais

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The best place to begin a French road trip adventure is from Calais, but the port-city is much more than just a gateway to France, it has a variety of attractions and sights worth seeing. So, whether you plan to use it as a launchpad, or soak up what Calais has to offer, one thing is for sure - Eurotunnel Le Shuttle gets you across the Channel faster than a ferry from Dover to Calais! Did you know? Prices start from £30 per car There are up to four departures every hour, 365 days a year Eurotunnel Le Shuttle takes just 35 minutes from Folkestone to Calais There are no baggage restrictions, so you can pack as much as you like Thinking of travelling from Dover to Calais by ferry? For some people, the first travel option that might spring to mind when considering a trip to France is the Dover to Calais ferry. But in fact, the most flexible, cost efficient and speedy option for holidaymakers looking to cross the channel is to book with Eurotunnel Le Shuttle. How long does the ferry take from Dover to Calais? The time it takes a ferry to sail to Calais from Dover can vary, with the shortest duration being 90 minutes - rather lengthy when compared to the Eurotunnel’s 35-minute transit. The benefit of a faster transit is the time saved, which allows you to better explore not just Calais, but the entirety of France. You’ll have more time to visit the cities, each brimming with their own unique culture, or head off the beaten track to experience the beautiful, rural landscape. Driving to our Folkestone terminal If you’re planning to drive from London to Calais, or from anywhere else in the UK, Eurotunnel Le Shuttle is also your easiest and fastest option. The swift journey beneath the channel permits even a day trip to Calais from London! Eurotunnel Le Shuttle is much easier to reach when compared to the ferries from Dover to Calais, to find us simply make your way to the M20 and take exit 11A. Take a look at our handy table to see the distances to our Folkestone terminal from these British cities: Cities in the UK Distance Driving Time London 67.4 miles/109km 1h 21m Portsmouth 127 miles/205km 2h 08m Bristol 186 miles/298km 3h 02m Birmingham 194 miles/313km 3h 08m Exeter 235 miles/378km 4h 07m Leeds 259 miles/417km 4h 13m Manchester 275 miles/444km 4h 32m Newcastle 341 miles/549km 5h 26m Glasgow 463 miles/746km 7h 22m Edinburgh 461 miles/742km 7h 41m Please note: These distance and driving times to our UK terminal are approximate and given as guidance only. What to see in Calais As mentioned above, Calais is often regarded as the starting point when setting off on a French adventure. But what could you experience if you chose to linger for a while? One popular place to visit when in Calais is Carrefour Cité Europe. One of the largest in the region, this supermarket is just a five-minute drive from Eurotunnel Le Shuttle Calais terminal. Many Brits pop in to sample the local cheeses, wines and meats, as well to stock up on French travel snacks. If you’d like to soak up some culture, the historic Town Hall, Le Beffroi de Calais (pictured top), is an architectural gem certainly worth a visit. Built in 1885, this landmark provides impressive views of Calais, which you can take advantage of during a guided tour that takes groups to the top of the tower. Get back to nature when in Côte d'Opale If you want to feel the wind in your hair then drive to the stunning Côte d'Opale, which is a short drive west of Calais. Once there you can stroll along the Sentier des Balcons d'Escalles, a beautiful 8km coastal path that grants views of the chalk cliffs and stunning French countryside, as well as the chance to hunt for fossils. Some other sandy spots worth visiting are Blériot-Plage and Plage de Calais. The latter features a long pier that stretches out to sea and is the closest beach to our Calais terminal. A stroll along the pier is a great way to work up an appetite, which can be satisfied in any of the local restaurants or cafés. Lastly, the Musée Mémoire is a must see for visitors interested in Calais’ significant role in the Second World War. The museum sits within the gorgeous, Parc-Saint-Pierre and boasts an impressive collection of articles, spread across its 22 exhibition halls. Travelling to Calais with Eurotunnel Le Shuttle The journey to Calais with Eurotunnel Le Shuttle is quick and easy, but may be a mystery to those who have never travelled with us before. The first thing to do is book by selecting your time and date of travel, then follow these steps as you approach our Folkestone terminal. Arriving at our Folkestone terminal Exit the motorway at Junction 11A and drive straight to our check-in booths. Allow yourself between 30 minutes and two hours before your chosen departure time. Collecting your Departure Hanger info You will need your booking reference number and the credit/debit card used at the time of booking to collect this. Your hanger will print from the self-service machine or will be handed to you by check-in staff, depending on which booth you choose to use. A letter will be displayed on your hanger, which is the letter given to your timed shuttle. Our Passenger Terminal Once you're through check-in, take some time to relax and visit our Passenger Terminal Building for a spot of shopping, or enjoy some refreshments at one of the cafés. You can board approximately 25 minutes before your departure time, customer information screens and service announcements will let you know when Le Shuttle is ready, so keep an eye on your shuttle's letter. Have your passport ready When it's time, drive straight through to the British and French border controls where your passport, vehicle and official documentation will be checked. Please have all passports to hand, removed from wallets and open at the photo page until you have cleared all controls. Drive on Follow the signs to France to find your way to the boarding lanes, where you may face a small wait. When your shuttle is ready to board the barrier will open in your lane, please proceed on the marked route towards the platform. Once boarded, you'll be able to stretch your legs and explore the light and air-conditioned Eurotunnel Le Shuttle carriages or sit back and relax. Drive off Once you’ve reached Calais, simply drive off at the end of the crossing and voilà, your French adventure awaits! If you want to know more or have any questions, take a look at our contact page for a range of ways to get in touch. Whether you're going on holiday or travelling with work, making the trip to Calais has never been so easy. Book your next journey with Eurotunnel Le Shuttle today, for a convenient and affordable travel experience.

Arts and Crafts Village

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Desvres and its longstanding pottery making tradition Awarded the name of "Ville et Métiers d'Art" in 1997, the Desvres earthenware tradition goes back over two centuries. Desvres remains the custodian of a historic heritage including decorations, moulds, and an outstanding know-how in both hand decoration and the stamping technique (a moulding process similar to sculpting). Today, a dozen craftsmen are perpetuating this earthenware tradition in Desvres and are happy to welcome you in their workshop to demonstrate their passion and skill. The Arts & Crafts Village Spread over 2200 m² on two levels, The Arts & Crafts Village in Desvres (VMAD) is a new structure offering an introductory tour to the current arts & crafts trades. From the windows overlooking the workshops, you will discover the universe of craftsmen at work. It is a fascinating way to learn about the tools and materials used, and to understand the professional path of these young people who are so passionate about their job. Discover the Arts & Crafts Village shop and its craftsmen The VMAD shop offers a selection of the most beautiful objects and creations crafted by professionals in the region and across France. It is the ideal place to search out unique, handmade gifts made from earthenware, wood, glass and fabric. More information about the work of the artisans and their biographies is available from Emily at reception. What will I find there? Bowls, cups, glasses, plates, knife rests, butter dishes, jam pots, salt cellars and pepper pots, serving dishes, teapots, sugar bowls, pitchers, serviette rings, vases of all shapes and materials, tidy trays and candlesticks, glass tea light holders, stem vases, lamps, ceramic animals and hats, piggy banks, jewellery boxes, necklaces, bracelets, earrings, rings, glass beads, cufflinks, dish towels, handbags and ties with Calais lace, buttons and book covers in Japanese fabric, lighter holders, bookmarks, books on traditional Desvres "faience", magnets made from Desvres tile "faience", board games and small furniture objects made from driftwood, and much more... Getting there and around Chaussée Brunehaut - RD 341 Lieu-dit "Les Courteaux", 62240 LONGFOSSE Tél :+33 (0)3 21 99 60 20 contact@vmad.fr http://www.vmad.eu Book your journey Opening times From Tuesday to Saturday: 9.00am - noon / 2.00pm - 6.00pm

Holiday Inn Calais

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An ideal location to explore Calais The hotel is situated in the centre of Calais with the pretty marina right in front of it. The beach, where you can enjoy a bracing walk, is within easy reach.

Calais celebrates Christmas

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Get into the Christmas spirit The town centre and districts of Calais are lit up each year to celebrate Christmas and New Year. Make the most of your trip to Calais to discover what the town has planned for your enjoyment! Each weekend is packed with festivities that will delight all the family. Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse are taking centre stage this year and will be sure to come and greet you at the opening parade! Balloon modelling, children's face-painting, sand sculptures, concerts, giant parades, nativity scene in the gardens of the Town Hall, maze, without forgetting the famous Christmas market…you will love the celebrations! Here is an idea of what's in store! Come and do your shopping in Calais and join in the celebrations! 29 November Christmas lights switch on Place de l'Hôtel de Ville, 1730 hours Switching on of the Christmas lights with Mickey and Minnie mascots who will be giving out Mickey ear headbands. Opening of the "Sand Sculpture" and "Mickey & Donald as Art" exhibitions. Calais Cœur de Vie shopping centre, Boulevard Jacquard. 30 November Treasure Hunt Town Hall, Place d'Armes, 1500 hours Face-painting and balloon modelling with Mickey and Minnie. Approximate duration: 2 hours. Free of charge. 6 and 7 December Christmas Market, face-painting and balloon modelling. Calais Theatre and Place d'Armes 6 December Gospel choir concert. Calais Theatre From 1430 to 1830 hours. Duration: 20 minutes 7 December, 1800 hours Descent of the Belfry. Saturday 13 December Santa procession Place d'Armes Troïka sleigh carries Santa through the town from 1700 hours. A real traditional Russian Troïka sleigh will be lit up as darkness falls and will carry Santa through the town. Come and greet Santa as it moves off from the Theatre. The procession will then stop at the Town Hall before heading to the Place d'Armes. Sunday 14 December Place d'Armes Face-painting  - 1400 to 1800 hours. Meet Santa - 1400 to 1800 hours. Meet Santa and take away a photo souvenir capturing the magic moment. Balloon modelling - at 1500 hours, 1600 hours, 1700 hours, three 45-minute sessions. Ice and Fire show -  1740 to 1800 hours. Free of charge. Saturday 20 December Christmas Market Calais Theatre - from 1000 to 1900 hours. Face-painting and balloon modelling Calais Theatre and Place d'Armes At 15h00, 16h00, 17h00, three 45-minute sessions. Parade through the town with elves on stilts, at 14h30, 15h30, 16h30. Duration 45 minutes. Concert by the Harmonie Municipale orchestra In the square in front of the Theatre at 1600 hours. Duration 30 minutes. Place d'Armes at 1700 hours. Duration 30 minutes. Sunday 21 December Christmas Market, face-painting and balloon modelling. Calais Theatre 20 to 28 December Bouncy village Forum Gambetta.  Three sessions of 1 hour of play time per day. From 1400 to 1500 hours, from 1530 to 1630 hours, from 1700 to 1800 hours. Entrance is by invitation only. Invitations can be obtained from the partner shops and will be handed out to the public on Wednesday 10 and 17 December and Saturday 6 and 13 December at Calais Cœur de Vie shopping centre from 14h to 17h. Subject to availability (170 spaces in each play time). There is also a carousel in Place d'Armes and a Mickey letterbox in the districts, a confectionary stall and some merry-go-rounds at the Theatre, and Christmas decorations at the Town Hall. A free bus service will run on the 3 weekends in December between Place Foch, Place d'Armes and the Theatre. Office de tourisme Calais Côte d'Opale 12 Bd Clémenceau - Calais Tel: +33 (0)3 21 96 62 40 MAIRIE DE CALAIS Place du Soldat Inconnu CS30329 - 62107 CALAIS CEDEX - FRANCE  BUREAUX : Espace de Promotion  9 rue Paul Bert Tel.: +33 (0)3 21 46 20 83 Book your journey

Discover Calais Cote Opale

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If you’re wondering where to go this year for a French holiday that’s a real family pleaser, then look no further! Just across the English Channel you will find the Opal Coast – long, golden sandy beaches, rock pools where you can fish for shrimps and mussels, secret inlets and sunbathing seals. Buy some freshly made croissants for breakfast, a crispy baguette and lip-smacking fromage for a delicious al fresco lunch, and a mouth-watering cake for tea!

Le Grand Bleu Restaurant

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One of the best restaurants on the Opal Coast Located opposite Calais harbour, you can enjoy fresh produce, often organic and cooked with a touch of originality. France is famous for its delicately prepared and inventive cuisine and the Grand Bleu brings you just that! Mathieu Colin, although still young, is an accomplished chef. After completing his studies in Calais, Mathieu joined the Ducasse Group (Alain Ducasse is one of the most acclaimed chefs in the world) where he soon became assistant Chef. He then moved on to a famous Parisian restaurant called "Le Pavillon Ledoyen", located down the Champs Élysées; employed as trainee chef, he soon became second in charge and a year later Head Chef.   Forward thinking by nature, Mathieu Colin is always seeking innovative recipes. Mathieu and his wife Cindy would like to welcome you to the Grand Bleu and delight your taste buds in pleasant surroundings... Getting there and around Located opposite Calais harbour, just 15 minutes from the Eurotunnel Le Shuttle's Calais Terminal. Le Grand Bleu restaurant Quai de la Colonne (Facing the inner harbour) 8 Rue Jean-Pierre Avron 62100 CALAIS Tel: +33 (0) 3 21 97 97 98 www.legrandbleu-calais.com/fr/   Closed on Tuesday evening, Wednesday evening and Sunday evening Book your journey

Najeti Open 2017

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15 to 18 June 2017 near St Omer Eurotunnel Le Shuttle, one of The Najeti Open's official partners, is delighted to be part of this international event. The Najeti Open is the second golf tournament in France to be selected by the Challenge Tour, an international tournament attracting some of the best professional golfers in the world. Aa Saint-Omer golf club, regarded as one of the top golf courses in Northern France, has hosted the Najeti Open as a Challenge Tour event since 2003. A golf course offering spectacular views The Val course at Aa Saint-Omer Golf Club was designed by Dutch architect Johan Frederik DUDOK VAN HEEL, 15 times amateur champion in the Netherlands. He is well known for designing golf courses which are in total harmony with the surrounding countryside. Playing with the contours of the terrain, the "dog legs" and the numerous sloping greens, this championship golf course presents a serious challenge to the Challenge Tour players. The course overlooks the Aa valley and offers spectacular views as well as a friendly and sporting atmosphere. The perfect environment to tee off in style! Entertainment for all the family Whatever your age or practice level, events are organised to enable you to play golf: short games, putting, practice, fun course… Each workshop is run by professionals. Where to Stay With is 54 comfortable bedrooms overlooking the greens or the forest, its well known gastronomic restaurant and its beautiful spa, Hôtel du Golf will seduce sport enthusiast, nature lovers and those seeking relaxation. Getting there and around Just a 30 minute drive from our Calais Terminal, this is one of the most accessible golfing delights in Northern France. Follow the A26 motorway towards Paris and take exit 3 for Saint-Omer. Then take the RN42 towards Boulogne and take exit Lumbres. Aa Saint Omer Golf Club Chemin des Bois, Acquin Westbecourt, 62380 Lumbres, France Tel: + 33 (0)3 21 38 59 90

Le Touquet-Paris-Plage

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Explore 'Paris-on-Sea' For a small town Le Touquet-Paris-Plage has an awful lot to offer. From 1920s glamour to family fun and even high-octane beach sports, there's never a dull moment in this luxurious seaside escape. Known as 'Paris-on-Sea', Le Touquet-Paris-Plage is enjoying a popularity revival from its early 20th Century heyday, when it was a playground for the wealthy and the escape of choice for the British literary establishment. Noted writers such as PG Wodehouse, Noël Coward and HG Wells have all taken a promenade along the town's long picturesque beach and basked in its golden sunshine. Ravaged by the Second World War, Le Touquet-Paris-Plage's popularity briefly diminished, but today its charm and faded seaside glamour has made it more popular than ever, with the chic residents of Paris migrating to its sandy shore every summer.

Dunkirk

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History, warmth and tradition ... Come and discover this seafaring city that is just waiting for your visit! On arrival, you'll see that Dunkirk is a city looking to the future but doing all that it can to protect and promote its rich history. Dunkirk is also famed for its carnival: its warmth, fun and traditions make it a carnival like no other. In Dunkirk, there's so much to do! For hiking enthusiasts, there are 600 hectares of sand dunes for you to enjoy! The Dunes of Flanders enable you to discover a natural coastal and maritime environment that is full of surprises…. Hiking circuits have been created, so you can try a short fun stroll through the dunes or set off on a longer nature trail. If you are more into nautical activities, there's plenty for you to do too! Numerous sailing excursions are available, even over the weekend. You can also have a go at land sailing, kitesurfing or even 'paddle-walking'! Dunkirk is all about sports and there truly is something for everyone. There are many parks dotted about the town, which make ideal spots for a family outing. The Sculpture Garden is home to a host of contemporary artworks, in a wonderful outdoor setting. The Parc de Malo, a paradise for small children, is just a few steps from the beach of Malo-les-Bains. The Top 5 things to do! 1. Museums The town is full of all kinds of museums, from contemporary art to maritime traditions, with something guaranteed to engage young and old alike! Lieu d'Art et Action Contermporaine (LAAC): set in the heart of a sculpture garden, amidst stunning architecture, the LAAC houses a rich collection of art from the 20th Century. The Port museum: located in a former tobacco warehouse, the museum's collections illustrate the vast history of Dunkirk, once a strategic port on the North Sea The Musée Port Royal: housed in a former powder magazine, you will find an exciting permanent exhibition on the theme of the Corsairs and the naval forces of Louis XIV The Musée des Beaux-arts: exhibitions that combine ancient and contemporary art from the east and the west. 2. The Palais de l'Univers et des Sciences (PLUS) Set off on a voyage that will take you from the first moments of the Big Bang to the current day. Lose yourself under the starry vault of the planetarium and enjoy the shows and temporary exhibitions; an experience guaranteed to thrill both young and old. 3. Vauban Promenade At Gravelines, in the heart of the city, you will set off on a journey through time… on the water! On this most tranquil and safe of adventures, come and discover the incredible richness of the work of Vauban, navigating around the fortifications byi pedalo , rowboat or electric boat, in a perfectly preserved setting. 4. The Fort-Mardyck Dunkerque Grand Littoral Zoo Inside the zoo, young and old alike can experience an adventure, as the natural environment for more than a 170 animals has been recreated including 40 domestic species of French and European fauna. 5. The Mémorial du Souvenir This memorial was built to tell the incredible story of the Battle of Dunkirk and the evacuation of more than 330,000 allied soldiers from the 'Dunkirk pocket', during Operation Dynamo (in May-June 1940), a vast operation to ship the soldiers back to safety in England. Find out more about all these activities, click here   How to get there When leaving our Calais terminal, follow the A16 motorway towards Calais/Lille and take exit 62 " Dunkerque Centre" – approximately a 45 minute drive away. There is plenty of parking available in the city centre. Book your journey

LAAC Dunkirk

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What is the CoBrA movement? An acronym of the hometowns of its founders - Copenhagen, Brussels and Amsterdam - the CoBrA movement was created in 1948 in Paris by six young artists: Christian Dotremont, Joseph Noiret, Asger Jorn, Karel Appel, Constant Nieuwenhuys and Guillaume Corneille van Berverloo. These six artists were interested in creating collaborative works of poetry, writing and paintings that were opposed to all artistic formalism. In addition to the ideas and opinions that they shared and their collective works, they organised exhibitions together and founded the COBRA review (March 1949), although only eight issues were ever published! This review brought together essays on writing, popular art and cinema.   The movement, which lasted only three years, was an essential moment in the history of modern art. To put it briefly, the characteristics of this movement are spontaneity and experimentation, and the works created by its followers feature vibrant brushwork and brilliant colours! Great exhibition at the LAAC in Dunkirk   Set in the middle of a sculpture garden, the LAAC ( Lieu d'Art et Action Contemporaine) in Dunkirk takes on the skyline with its unusual white ceramic architecture and is situated right next to the beach and the port. In addition to the cultural events it offers, the LAAC also regularly organises temporary exhibitions that showcase the museum's collections. The "CoBrA, sous le regard d'un passionné" exhibition will bring together an incredible collection of more than two hundred works, some of which have never before been shown to the public. This exhibition retraces the origins of the movement and the works produced during the CoBrA years and highlights the international dimension of the CoBrA contributors through presentation of works from American, French and English members of the movement.  Useful links to help prepare your visit! Find out more about the LAAC   Find out more about the city of Dunkirk   How to get there From the terminal in Calais, take the A16 motorway towards Calais/Lille and then take exit 62 'Dunkerque Centre' before following signs towards Casino/Parking Pont Lucien Lefol Book your journey

Traditional French Food

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Traditional Northern French food French food is renowned for its quality and style, with each region bringing its own characteristic cuisine to the table. Meal time in France is much more than just eating; tradition calls for them to be a social occasion, a chance to bring people together, enjoy carefully selected dishes, local produce and that all important pairing of food with wine. Northern France is celebrated for its hearty food and, not surprisingly along the coast, its fish dishes. This region also produces more beer than wine so you're likely to find a beer-infused stew on the menu and locals sipping a refreshing lager with their meals. Regional food of the north is wholesome and ingredients are usually chosen from what can be sourced locally.   A great place to start your culinary tour is Nord-Pas-de-Calais, a northern region of France, close to the Belgium border. There is plenty to explore so whether you're just passing through or want to make more of your visit, this Eurotunnel Le Shuttle guide will introduce you to some of the cuisine highlights and visitor attractions not to be missed. Calais Head to the centre of Calais and you can take your pick from a host of quality restaurants including Le Vieux Fourneau, on Rue Royale. There's plenty of parking nearby so you can pull up the car and fill up on fine French food after your cross-Channel journey.   Calais has a vibrant cultural scene with lots of entertainment options as soon as you set foot on French soil. One of the highlights is Le Channel Theatre, built by French architect Malgras in 1905. Opera buffs, theatre fans, comedy devotees and classical music enthusiasts can choose from a vibrant programme of both traditional and modern works. Thanks to the creation of the Restaurant du Théatre, Le Channel, you can now enjoy fine French cuisine in this unique artistic atmosphere. Depending on the size of your appetite you can choose a three-course meal in the restaurant or a light snack such as a warming bowl of soup or a selection of tapas to share. Wimereux   Just half an hour's drive (40km) south of Eurotunnel Le Shuttle's terminal in Calais, sits the coastal town of Wimereux. This traditional resort maintains much of its architectural character from its Victorian era heyday. You can take a walk along the promenade or golden sands, past beach huts, shops and tempting patisseries. By the sea wall you'll find Restaurant La Vie Est Belle. After picking up a Michelin star from his long stint at La Brocante in Wimille, chef Jean-Francois Laurent now heads up this lovely restaurant in Wimereux. You can relax in the cosy dining room or sit and breathe the sea air from the terrace while enjoying dishes made from fresh, local produce. Although it's at the pricier end of the scale, a meal at the L'Atlantic Hotel Restaurant is almost guaranteed to be both creative and fresh. For a real treat try the speciality fish dishes such as the turbot or delve a little deeper and sign up for one of the cooking courses. Boulogne-sur-Mer Boulogne-sur-Mer is a large fishing port just 30 minutes' drive from Eurotunnel Le Shuttle's Calais terminal. As you would expect, fish is the focus here and there are many excellent seafood restaurants to choose. Bar Hamiot is the most popular restaurant in Boulogne-sur-Mer. Sitting down for a meal is an experience not to be missed, with its Parisian Brasserie look and feel and panoramic views of the fishing port. Fish dishes are prepared from catches fresh from the line that day and brought from the fish market at the port below. Le Welsh Pub is the oldest restaurant in Boulogne, a friendly place which, despite the name, has a very French menu. There are pub, brasserie and restaurant food options to choose from. A classic plate of oysters or a delicious meaty stew are just two examples of the sort of food on offer. The restaurant's location on the central cobbled square means you can browse around stalls of local produce at the vibrant market on Wednesday and Saturday mornings. While in the square, don't forget to pop into Boulogne's oldest church, St Nicholas for a slice of history. Continue the sea theme with a visit to the Nausicaa Aquarium, National Sea Centre. This is much more than just an aquarium. You can discover tropical reefs and mangrove swamps, delve into a submerged tropical rainforest, learn why a sharks' reputation as a vicious beast is undeserved and watch African penguins waddling around a purpose-made beach.   Boulogne sur mer is 30 minutes' drive from Calais heading west along the A16. Paris To extend your trip and sample more tempting French regional food variations then head to Paris. As a transport hub, almost every regional cuisine ends up here. This is also the perfect opportunity to experience eating in a Parisian brasserie which has become a French institution.   Starting life as taverns serving beer and hearty food, brasseries have preserved their Art Nouveau charms and become sumptuous dining rooms with glistening mirrors and hand-painted murals. It's here that you'll find authentic specialities at reasonable prices. Brasseries tend to be large and busy which makes for a lively atmosphere and are generally open late. If you're looking for a more romantic setting then Brasserie Flo has dark panelled walls and dim lighting to set the mood. You can try some classic dishes such as steak tartare and the menu changes every day so you'll never run out of options.    Getting there All the towns above are within 30 minutes' drive from Eurotunnel Le Shuttle's Calais Terminal with Paris, a further 3 hours along the A16. Book your journey

Lille 3000

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A Fantastic trip to Lille! A highlight of Lille's cultural calendar, lille3000 offers a program of activities for all the family and events across the city and its surrounding areas. From October 2012 through to January 2013, lille3000 hosts Fantastic, a festival with exhibitions, urban metamorphoses, concerts, parades and over 500 events helping transform Lille into a supernatural world. What better way to showcase that Lille really is the European Capital of Culture. After Bombaysers de Lille (2006) and Europe XXL (2009), Fantastic 2012 is all based around a fantasy world in Lille and the Eurodistrict, in public places and the different lille3000 venues (Tripostal, Gare Saint Sauveur), and in collaboration with Lille's cultural partners. Come and discover Lille, and celebrate the arts and culture of a Modern Europe. Opening parade The festivities kick off on the 6th of October with Fantastic's opening parade: a dive into a marvellous, fantasy world. Surrational, a dishevelled giant creature, hovers over Lille, dressed up especially for the occasion. Don't miss the special effects and inflatable structures all part of the parade. Brass bands including more than 300 musicians and the Orchestre National de Lille will play their musical repertoire as well as a version of Ravel's Boléro. The festivities go on all night long in what promises to be a Fantastic evening of celebrations! Urban metamorphoses Discover more than 20 urban metamorphoses: a house fallen from the sky, a flying saucer greeting passengers at Lille Flanders station, and a giant creature welcoming those arriving at Lille Europe station.   Exhibitions Phantasia Converted into an exhibition centre for Lille 2004 European Capital of Culture, Tripostal is today an iconic cultural and artistic landmark. Tripostal goes wild with the Phantasia exhibition. Transported into a surreal and fantasy world, visitors will be confronted with the supernatural, the wondrous and the strange and encounter the unexplained at every corner! Tripostal, Lille – 06 October 2012 > 13 January 2013   Fantastic Attractions Gare Saint Sauveur station plays host to a combination of exhibitions, concerts, shows, games, films for the younger ones and much more. For Fantastic 2012, Gare Saint Sauveur is transformed into a fantastic interactive funfair. Gare Saint Sauveur, Lille – 06 October 2012 > 13 January 2013   Futurotextiles The exhibition "Futurotextiles" highlights the world of textile and its amazing diversity, from fibre to woven materials, and composite textiles to non-woven fabrics. CETI (L'Union, Tourcoing – 13 October > 30 December 2012   Fables of the 16th Century Flemish Landscape Bosch, Bles, Brueghel, Bril… the fables of the 16th century Flemish landscape. The second largest French museum outside Paris, the Palais des Beaux-Arts of Lille is famous for its collection of European paintings. Caught between the fantastic and the marvellous, the exhibition unveils paintings by masters of the Renaissance. Palais des Beaux-arts – 05 October 2012 > 14 January 2013 Chagall Using the exceptional Art Deco surroundings of this former swimming pool, 200 ceramic pieces, sculptures, and live arts will be displayed: a fantastic insight into Chagall's work! La Piscine, Roubaix - 13 October 2012 > 06 January 2013 Offer – Day Pass only €7.10 Visit more, pay less with the Lille Day Pass. The lille3000 Day Pass gives you a free access to the public transport network as well as free access or concessions to a selection of exhibition and events. It's available from the Tripostal, the Gare Saint Sauveur and the Transpole's ticket office. One more reason to visit Lille and its surroundings! One more reason to visit Lille and its surroundings!  Find out more about Lille   Discover Lile at www.lilletourism.com   How to get there Only an hour and a half drive from the Eurotunnel Calais Terminal, Lille is the perfect destination for a day trip or weekend break. From our Calais terminal, take the A16 and then the A25 motorway towards Lille. You'll be there in less than 1h30! Make the most of your time in Lille and stay overnight. Book your journey

Lille Flea Market

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Lille's Annual Flea Market The Braderie - Millions of visitors descend in search of a bargain More than 100km of stalls for you to explore One man's junk is another man's treasure, or so the saying goes, and nowhere is this more evident than Lille's annual flea market, The Braderie. For one weekend every September France's fifth-largest city is closed to traffic completely as vendors of all trades and types line the streets with stalls. In a tradition reportedly dating back to medieval times, anybody can come to the city to buy or sell wares, and every year millions of visitors descend on the ancient streets in search of a bargain. Estimates suggest there are more than 100km of stalls for you to explore, which can prove a daunting prospect if you are unfamiliar with Lille and its winding medieval streets. This Eurotunnel le Shuttle guide will help you find the best the market has to offer and make the most of your weekend. For further information www.lilletourism.com Origins of the Braderie The definite history of The Braderie appears to have been lost in time, but popular local legend has it that the event originated when medieval aristocracy gave their serfs permission to sell their old clothes and unwanted possessions on the street. The story goes that the upper classes thought the event looked so much fun they eventually joined in and soon the flea market had become an established tradition. Today anybody is free to set up a stall, with the event become a sort of massive jumble sale rather than an organised market, though serious traders often reserve their pitches weeks in advance and the city hall has also begun offering reservations. There are no restrictions on what can be bought and sold (outside of the general legal ones of course) so expect items of all shapes and sizes. The Braderie has become particularly well known for its antiques, with items from across Europe on offer, ranging from war memorabilia to fine art. Getting there, parking and getting around Lille is a 109km (1hr 15min) drive from the Eurotunnel le Shuttle terminal in Calais. Take the A16 out of Calais, heading east, then take exit 57 towards Lille. From there the A25 will take you right to the edge of the city. City centre roads are all closed off for The Braderie, so it is best to park out of town and take public transport in. Just off the A25, on the way into the city, are Porte d'Arras, C.H.R. B-Calmette and Porte des Postes car parks, where you can pay for long stay supervised parking. Both are near Metro stations, so it's easy to leave your car and head off to explore the market. Alternative out-of-town car parks can be found north of the city in Lomme and east in Villeneuve d'Ascque. Where to shop The Braderie does not officially open until 3pm on the Saturday, so although you can browse some of the stalls in the morning it is often worth saving your energy until trading begins. In recent years critics have bemoaned the influx of more modern stalls selling cheap electronics and mass-produced items, but the smart shopper can avoid these lower-quality traders by exploring the smaller back roads and staying off the main boulevards. The city's metro is the fastest way around, though the streets around the exits will often get very crowded and exploring on foot gives you more opportunity to find a unique bargain or unexpected sights. Most of the market can be found between Gare Lille Flandres and Porte des Postes stations. If you're looking for antique furniture and other larger pieces head for the Façade de l'Esplanade, where you can hunt out a bargain while taking a stroll along Lille's ancient canal. This area is also popular with British antique dealers who make the journey to sell their wares for the weekend. The narrow streets of the old town, Vieux Lille, offer a friendly atmosphere, and are a great place to witness an impromptu performance by one of the many bands which liven up The Braderie every year. Inside the walls of the Citadelle de Lilleshoppers can find smaller antiques, such as books, jewellery and paintings. The opportunity to browse in such unique surroundings is not to be missed. Don't be put off asking about items if your French is not completely up to scratch – many traders speak English and you can often get a better deal with a bit of haggling. Food and Drink The north France weather can be extremely hot over the weekend, so make sure you have plenty of water to stay hydrated. Many of the locals will get in on the act, selling you cooling drinks from the windows of their houses. At The Braderie eating is a big business and the dish of the weekend is always mussels and frites. Restaurants display their popularity by having diners stack their empty mussel shells on the pavement outside, with an ongoing competition to see who can produce the biggest pile. This can lead to the market taking on a distinct seafood aroma by the second day. Other Attractions Before The Braderie begins organisers take advantage of the closed roads to hold a half-marathon through Lille on the Saturday. Throughout the weekend musicians can be found playing on nearly every street corner, so there is always some form of entertainment to enjoy, and because the event runs for a straight 33 hours visitors often party well into the night. For more ideas of thins to see and do check out our guide to Lille. Whether you are bargain hunting or just looking to soak up the atmosphere, The Braderie is a unique event that should not be missed.  Book your journey

Louvre Lens Museum

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Did you know that some of the masterpieces of the Louvre Museum in Paris are showcased in the Louvre-Lens museum, only one hour from Calais? There is no longer the need to travel to Paris to see these magnificent works of art. Opened in December 2012, the Louvre-Lens aims to give visitors a fresh perspective on some of the most celebrated artworks in the world.

Boulogne-sur-Mer

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One of the most beautiful towns in the region Just half an hour from Calais/Coquelles, Boulogne-sur-Mer lies at the heart of the Côte d'Opale and the Boulonnais. You'll love the town for everything it has to offer: a vast architectural and historical heritage, which has earned it the title of City of Art and History, a coastal town, with its leading fishing port, where you can sample the finest fish and seafood dishes. Boulogne-sur-Mer as a whole is an invitation to discover the festivals, events and traditions that have grown from this natural heritage.   City of Art and History The town of Boulogne-sur-Mer has earned the title of 'City of Art and History' for a number of reasons: The old town – (Vieille Ville) is built on the site of a Roman camp, and kept its original size and road layout. The fortifications and the castle – (now a museum) surrounding the old town, are some of the best preserved examples of medieval architecture in France. The belfry – located just next to the town hall, has been on UNESCO's prestigious list of world heritage sites since 2005. Going up rue de Lille, you come to the Basilica of Notre Dame – the most prominent building in the old town with its 83-metre dome. It was built in the 19th century by Abbot Benoît-Agathon Haffreingue and has a stunning altar (produced in the workshops of the Vatican) made from 147 different types of marble and ornamental stone. The medieval crypt – the largest in Northern Europe , sits beneath the Basilica and is impressive for its size, the number of rooms it contains (the lower crypt, dome crypt and Chapel of the Virgin), the walls decorated with medieval frescoes, and its sculptures.   Town centre The town centre is perfectly located midway between the old town and the port. Mostly pedestrianised, it's a lovely place for a stroll or for a bit of shopping. There are numerous shops, bars and restaurants available. After wandering along the main streets, you come to place Dalton and the Church of Saint Nicolas; where a colourful market is held every Wednesday and Saturday morning, giving you the chance to sample local French produce. A city by the sea You can't visit Boulogne without experiencing the wonders of Nausicaá, the National Sea Centre. Opened in 1991, the centre is currently France's second most popular tourist attraction north of Paris. Discover giant aquariums, undersea explorations, face-to-face encounters with sharks, a touch tank where you can stroke the rays, the chance to go on board the life-size deck of a fishing boat and loads more! Everything at Nausicaá is designed so that visitors can find out more about the sea and its inhabitants; even the atmosphere takes you on a trip to the heart of the ocean! An unforgettable deep-sea adventure for the whole family! After visiting Nausicaá, you can take a stroll along the port. Boulogne-sur-Mer has the busiest fishing port in France and is also Europe's leading fish processing centre. It is a bustling, diverse port in a prime position: located within the town, it is also a combined port that serves fishing vessels, merchant shipping and pleasure boats alike. If you are looking for the beach, head along to the little red lighthouse (next to Nausicaá). From there you can watch the incessant ballet of fishing and pleasure boats going about their business.   Things to do Boulogne-sur-Mer has several museums adding culture to your visit: Follow in the footsteps of Auguste Mariette, Boulogne's own Egyptologist, at the castle museum. See oceanic and African art brought back from various expeditions. Marvel at works by major sculptors such as Rodin in the Fine Art section. As well as housing permanent collections, the Castle Museum also holds events and temporary exhibitions throughout the year. Just a short distance away, another museum (containing the stained glass window of Godefroy de Bouillon, stone and cast iron cannonballs and a well) has been created within the belfry, offering stunning views over the town. Going down Grande Rue, you come to the Casa San Martin. General José de San Martín, who liberated his country, Argentina (1816), Chile (1817) and Peru (1812) from Spanish rule, lived in this house from 1848 until his death. Find out more about the private life of this 'libertador', the history of the South American independence. Finally, why not visit an authentic fisherman's house, la Maison de la Beurrière, built in 1870, where you can find out how a seafaring family lived in the 1900s. The furniture, objects and clothing show the harsh lives of seafarers and take you right back into the history of fishing in Boulogne. Various traditional and cultural events are held throughout the year: The Côte d'Opale festival will take place from Friday 10th July to Sunday 19th July 2015. For history lovers, a reconstruction of the Camp de Boulogne is organized every year, where you can relive the Napoleonic era with reconstructions of battles, bivouacs and fanfares on the site of the Légion d'Honneur. Finally, if you want to experience Boulogne's traditions, the herring king festival is held at the end of September each year. Try fresh herring grilled on giant barbecues with a glass of Beaujolais straight from the wine cellar! Top 5 attractions in Boulogne The old town which houses the castle and the fortifications as well as the Basilica of Notre Dame. The town centre with its pedestrian streets and its numerous shops. Nausicaá, the National Sea Centre, where you will discover the sea and its inhabitants! The Castle Museum, where you will follow in the footsteps of great explorers! La Maison de la Beurrière, typical house from the beginning of the 20th century, where you can find out how a seafaring family lived in the 1900s.    How to get there From our Calais terminal, take the A16 motorway towards Boulogne-sur-Mer. You'll be at this coastal resort in barely 30 minutes! Book your journey

The Herring King Festival

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Join the crowds on the harbour side to celebrate into the night In the picturesque fishing town of Étaples, the arrival of November means just one thing. As the leaves begin to fall, cooking pots are washed, stalls set out and grills fired up. Meanwhile out on the ocean, nets start to fill up as the most important ingredient is gathered for the annual Herring King Festival. For two days every year, Étaples in transformed by a celebration of this versatile fish, which accounts for a large proportion of the town's economy. If you are looking to sample the local delicacy during the festivities, you may be surprised to find a wide variety of dishes available, all with one constant ingredient – the humble herring. Whether you prefer your fish fried, grilled, baked or stewed, you'll be able to find something to suit your tastes.   But it's not just the good food that draws thousands of visitors every year. It's the festival atmosphere, with crowds gathering along the harbour, celebrating into the night with locals dressed in traditional costume, singing sea shanties and performing folk dances. An unforgettable day out! While across the channel their counterparts prepare for the onset of winter, the inhabitants of Étaples enjoy a milder climate later into the year, The Herring King Festival is the perfect short break if you're beginning to get those end-of-summer blues. Getting there Étaples is just a 47 minute drive west from the Eurotunnel Le Shuttle terminal in Calais, along the A16 toll road. Avoiding the toll route by taking smaller roads is possible, but this route can have slower traffic and subsequently take longer. Where to stay There are several hotels of varying price ranges in and around Étaples, but remember that the festival is very popular, so try to book as far in advance as possible. If you're looking to take advantage of the mild climate of Northern-France then there are also numerous campsites in the area. Charges will vary by number of people camping and other facilities. For more tips see our camping in France guide. Other attractions Étaples began life as a medieval trading port, and the town's long and rich history, coupled with the natural beauty of its surrounding environment, means that there is plenty to explore if you want a break from the herring-based festivities.   On the Boulevard Bigot Descelers, also known as 'The Rope' you can find the official tourist office and the Maison de la Miniature, the home of the Modelisme Club Navals, which houses more than 280 intricate models of boats and nautical dioramas for visitors to enjoy. Head to the back of the exhibition to find the workshops and witness the process of making the miniature marvels. If you prefer your fish life-size then pop in to the nearby Maréis, an interactive centre where you can have a go at driving a simulated fishing trawler, come face-to-gill with some of the local species and learn how to tie the perfect reef knot. As you may have guessed by now, fish is pretty important to the people of Étaples, and you can learn even more about the fishing traditions of the town's inhabitants and how it has changed over generations, in the Musée de la Marine, located beside the port. Three floors of displays take you through the history of the town's fishing fleet, the traditions and beliefs of fishermen across the ages.   If this inspires you to take to the waves yourself, why not hop aboard a boat tour from the town's harbour? The bay around Étaples includes large sandy dunes which are part of the Canche Bay nature reserve, home to many species of rare seabirds and other wildlife. Pack some binoculars and prepare for some stunning sights on the 45 minute cruise. On the outskirts of town, off the route départementale D90, lies Étaples Military Cemetery, remembering the dead from both the First World War and the Second World War. More than 10,000 troops are buried in the cemetery, from across the Commonwealth, including the UK, Canada, Australia and India. There are also 658 German graves. The rows of uniform white gravestones serves as a grim reminder of the human cost of war, but one that is very powerful to witness in person.   Across the estuary from Étaples is the seaside resort of Le Touquet. Popular with the 'In-crowd' of the 1920s, this resort has a faded glamour which is once again making it a stylish and fashionable place to visit. Check out our day trips in France guide for more information. Whether you are a fan of herring or you just want to experience a great festival, don't miss out on the action in Étaples. Book your journey

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