Nord Pas de Calais
This is a region bordered on the north by the English Channel, to the northeast by Belgium, and to the south by the Picardy region. It is made up of just two departments, see below. In historic terms, this region covers most of what was once the French part of Flanders, and the old province of Artois (think of Stella). To be honest, it is not a region that most people tend to think of as a destination, but think again.
One thing that is above all in favour of the Nord–Pas-de-Calais region is its proximity to the south of England and the Low Countries to the east. Lille is less than a two hour train journey from London by Eurostar, and Calais is even closer.
For anyone travelling by car from the UK, this region is very accessible for a weekend break, take advantage of the cheap short stay return fares offered by Euro-tunnel and the various Ferry companies. What most people tend to do is drive through the region on the way to somewhere else which really is not fair as the region has a lot to offer.
The Nord Pas de Calais region consists of just 2 departments:
Pas de Calais (62) and Nord (59).
Really easy to get to from the UK with the many ferry routes and of course the Euro tunnel from Folkstone to Calais. From here you can go many ways and the whole of europe is open to you from the many motorways, as much of a hub for routes as Paris in many ways.
Surprisingly very regional with some good dishes and local cheeses including the famous Maroilles, the many Nord-Pas-de-Calais beers and the less well known regional wines have a germanic influence to them. Meat production is very high as well as confectioneries like the irresistable Bêtises-de-Cambrai sweets. Seafood and biscuit specialities are also in abundance in this region.
Nord-Pas de Calais is a land of sport and shares this passion with all ages and there are several hundred recreation and leisure centres across the region.
The Côte d'Opale and its many seaside resorts offer lots of beach activities, inland there are over two hundred horse riding centres. You can enjoy a wide range of activities including sand-yachting, kite-surfing, sea-kayaking, canoeing, rafting, pony trekking, cycle tourism, sailing, walking in lovely woodland, underwater diving, river. lake and pond fishing, and car or motorcycle racing at the famous Croix-en-Ternois Circuit.
Property in the area is at a premium because of the major towns and cities providing lots of employment but further out into the countryside and hamlet villages there are still some good bargains to be had in the busy French property market.
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