Author

Alexane

Published January 24 2022

Reading time: 6 min

Because a weekend in Normandy is not always synonymous with calm and relaxation, we have compiled a list of eight activities to discover in Cabourg, Houlgate, Merville-Franceville-Plage and the surrounding area. 

Arriving on the Flowery Coast, on a weekend or for a week-long vacation, you have undertaken to visit all the must-sees. But after eating a few mussels and fries, you feel ready to move up a gear. It has therefore come the moment to return the more sporty stay, with a selection ofsports to get you the shot ofadrénaline which you need. 

flyboard

You have most certainly already seen it in Normandy or elsewhere in the world during your vacation. But how does this funny thing work?

Without going into too much detail, the formula is quite simple to understand. You need: a board on which you are shod, a jet-ski, a long hose and water… under pressure! Because it is this pressurized water (evacuated by the turbine of the jet-ski) which propels you and allows you to levitate more than six meters high (yes, it is better not to be dizzy).

practiced in front of the Cabourg beach, this activity is considered easy, and accessible to all: be careful, however, to be well supervised by qualified instructors, because there are a certain number of rules to respect. 

Char à voile orange
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Sand yachting

It's really not the most technical activity: for proof, it is accessible even to children, From 10 years old. You just have to understand how this funny car works:

  • know how to handle the rudder, which allows you to steer the tank;
  • but also the rope (which we call “listening”), which will help you inflate and deflate the sail, and thus adapt the speed

Question timing, we opt for a two-hour session with an instructor, which will give you all the keys to get there the first time (or almost). Contrary to popular belief, it is quite possible to go sand yachting when there is little wind. On the equipment side, the helmet (compulsory) is provided. For the rest, you will have to come equipped with warm clothes: 

  • a windbreaker (waxed type, or K-Way);
  • a pair of closed shoes (forget flip-flops or small sandals, don't even think about coming with Crocs on your feet);
  • and a pair of DIY gloves (to better grip the sheet)

If you do not have this last accessory at home, the school offers it for sale for the modest sum of five euros. 

Kitesurfing

Let Kevin, the instructor of Houlgate kite school, take care of everything. Good news: it adapts to all levels, whether you are a beginner or more experienced, whether you are 12 or 56 years old.

Classes are offered in small groups (four people maximum), and last on average 3h30. Either the ideal length for an introduction and thus learn all the basics.

During the first session, you will learn, on the sand, to apprehend the first traction, as well as to pilot a kite wing. Then, depending on your level, you will learn how to put on the beach, master the steering and the power of the sail. For this activity, it is essential to know how to read and interpret the weather forecast: don't panic, Kevin will give you all the keys.

Kitesurf-Eric_LARRAYADIEU-18548-1200px
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Note

Houlgate is the perfect place to learn, since its beach forms natural pools, sheltered from the waves at low tide. Wetsuit, helmet and slippers are loaned. All you have to do is enjoy the moment. 

Wingfoil

If the club Kite-R Evolution à Merville-Franceville-Plage is specialized, as its name suggests, in the practice of kitesurfing, it also offers other activities. Like the wingfoil, a new form of hybrid gliding, between kitesurfing and windsurfing. Three steps are necessary to learn: 

  • Handle the wing, the inflatable wing
  • Learn the foil, the lower part of the machine, in contact with the water
  • Combine the two 

For a quieter activity, do not hesitate to go on stand-up paddle, to do with the family. 

Towed buoy

Notice to lovers of thrills and waterfalls! That activity, to practice in the open sea, consists of climbing on a buoy, towed by a 6,50 meter long zodiac, equipped with a 150 horsepower engine (as fiery and powerful as those bred in our stud farms... and yes, nothing only that). The Normandy nautical activity center provides all the equipment, including the buoy (phew). Several options are available: 

  • La cake, the sportiest. Here, the fall is inevitable (except perhaps if you opt for the middle place). Maximum sensations. 
  • La bananas, the quietest. It is recommended for children from 6 to 10 years old when the sea is calm. She goes much slower, so falls are less frequent. 
  • Le couch, the safest. This is the intermediate option, generally recommended for families. It is almost impossible to fall, but the instructor can go more or less quickly depending on the sensations sought. 

Water ski lift

Aeolus adventure attracts the curious and thrill seekers from April to September. Among the most popular activities: the water ski lift, accessible to beginners and more experienced alike. What discover the pleasures of skiing.

And during this time, the less adventurous can always start a tree climbing course. To avoid spoiling anything, Eole Aventure is ideally located in a very green setting: the walk around it is free.

Parasailing

Take to the skies with a thrilling activity guaranteed. the parasailing allows you, neither more nor less, to gain height. This consists of rising in the air, hooked to a sail similar to that of a parachute, from the ground or a body of water, being towed quickly.

At first glance, it seems scary: in reality, there is not much technique to learn, you just have to let yourself be carried (or stolen) to have a good time.

Filles sur parachute ascensionnel
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The positive point !

You will have the possibility of being in pairs, just to stick together on takeoff and landing. 

Karting
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Karting 

This is an activity that should satisfy speed aficionados. Book a session karting to the dedicated circuit of the city of Cabourg : here, no need to be an experienced pilot, the handling of the machines being explained at the start of the session.

The track is one of the most beautiful in Normandy: surrounded by greenery, it allows you to discover the joys of karting in an idyllic setting. To do with friends or family.