This is our own little slice of Brittany! With a strong character and a love of fishing, Audresselles is the most typical of our fishing villages. The last flobart boats are there to remind us that for many years, the village lived only from coastal fishing. And not just any old fishing; here, between Boulogne and Cap Gris-Nez, the sea bed is rich in lobster and crab!
Fishing still reigns supreme in Audresselles
You can buy shellfish or fish directly from fishermen displaying their colours (blue, of course) or you can enjoy them at the table of one of the many restaurants. They are everywhere, around the main square or rue Édouard-Quenu, and delight hungry tummies with sumptuous platters of seafood.
Every year at Whitsun, Audresselles celebrates the Crab Festival, an opportunity to sample freshly caught crabs. On 15th August, it organises its Blessing of the Sea, with a procession of decorated boats and fishermen in traditional costume.
Highlighting the Fishermen’s Trail in Audresselles
All the history of local fishing, its flobart boats and its techniques are evoked on the Fishermen’s Trail, a lovely 2.7km heritage trail that starts from the Avenue des Flobarts car park and leads through the picturesque streets of Audresselles. Ten panels illustrated with old photos provide valuable information on the maritime and cultural heritage of the village. They also invite you to scan the sea for grey seals, which are a regular feature of the area…
Fishermen’s cottages and seaside villas.
This walk also provides an opportunity to discover the traditional fishermen’s cottages, as cute as dolls’ houses. White with blue shutters and often flanked by dormer windows, these are easy to spot.
But Audresselles also has some pretty seaside villas, some of which have the immense privilege of facing the sea… It must be said that the village is built on a ledge above the beach. This offers a real balcony onto the sea, with an air of being at the end of the world when the waves are raging away on stormy days; our own little Brittany.
The beaches of Audresselles
Despite its popularity, Audresselles has managed to retain its natural character. There are no huge stretches of golden sand here. The town has two beaches, both of which are beautifully wild and unsupervised. In the south, pebbles are king, even more so at high tide, and visitors can sunbathe against the high walls that protect the villas. To the north, Noirdat beach runs towards Gris-Nez, along a rough ochre-coloured cliff. Between the two is the Côte de Fer, an area of somewhat moon-like rocks. Large sandstone boulders, like so many giant steps leading to the sea…
It is here that professionals and amateurs alike come to pick mussels when the season allows it. Fishing on foot, a highly prized sport in Audresselles, offers the pleasure of a fresh pot of mussels. A less sophisticated delicacy than a plate of lobster or crab, but no less traditional!