Considered the Hawaii of Europe, its world famous waves have made Hossegor the European capital of surfing.
A bourgeois and peaceful city
It was a small group of artists and intellectuals who, in the early 1900s, discovered Hossegor. At the time, it was still just a saltwater lake lost between the dunes and the moors, located in the municipality of Soorts. Over the years, social life is organized around the lake. The First World War will somewhat slow down this expansion. In 1927, the construction of the sporting-casino began, which housed tennis courts, a swimming pool, a casino and a Basque pelota court in the middle of the pines. A few years later, a golf course was created. Hossegor then becomes the “sports resort of elegance”. Magnificent villas are built in an architectural style typical of the resort known as “Basco-Landais”. After the Second World War, Hossegor remains a bourgeois and peaceful city. But the 70s and the development of surfing changed this image…
Surfers were considered marginals
The first surfers discovered the cult wave of the Gravière beach in the mid-1960s. “The French Surfing Federation (FFS), founded in Biarritz in 1964, then decided to settle in Hossegor. Mass of surfers is not appreciated by the inhabitants and holidaymakers of Hossegor, whom they considered marginal. However, by offering companies in the surfing world to benefit from tax exemptions to set up in the town, Hossegor has made surfing an economic asset. Its success is due to the swell which comes head-on thanks to the Gouf de Capbreton, a sea trench similar to the famous wave of Nazaré, in Portugal. This geological specificity offers La Nord and La Gravière, its two closest spots, a beach-break of unique power and quality: a wave of sand, without coral or pebbles. It was in the 80s that Hossegor carved out its mythical reputation: Australian and American surfers in search of the perfect wave landed, and it was the breaking wave ! Moreover, since 1994, every year, in October, the greatest surfers in the world meet there to compete in the Quiksilver Pro France, one of the events of the world surfing championship – won for the first time. last year by a Frenchman, Jérémy Flores – and the Roxy Pro France – his female counterpart who once again consecrated the Hawaiian Carissa Moore.