What to do in Gruissan? Itinerary for the weekend
Located only 15 minutes from Narbonne and about 1 hour from Montpellier, Gruissan is an ideal nature destination to spend the weekend. I was very surprised by the diversity of landscapes that this small town of 5,000 inhabitants offers, where life is good. So what to do in Gruissan? I propose you a complete itinerary with activities for your weekend in Gruissan!
How to prepare your stay in Gruissan?
When to go to Gruissan?
In my opinion, the best time to visit Gruissan is from spring to autumn, i.e. from April to October. Expect to see more people at the tourist sites in the summer. Nevertheless, Gruissan is not a mass tourism destination. That’s why it feels so serene!
How to get to Gruissan?
There are two ways to get to Gruissan.
By train, arriving at Narbonne station
By car, of course
I advise you to rent a car in Narbonne if you come by train. Compare and book the best car rental prices on Skyscanner.
Where to sleep in Gruissan?
If you like unusual accommodation, you’ll definitely be attracted to the lodgeboats in Gruissan. A new concept in Europe which promises a pleasant stay.
The accommodation is floating, but don’t panic! You won’t get seasick thanks to the facilities that allow them to be stabilised. I really enjoyed my weekend in the lodgeboat, which was super well equipped and comfortable.
Book in advance, as the Îlots de Gruissan are victims of their success 🤩. Information & booking
What to do in Gruissan?
Here we go! I’m going to tell you the most important places to visit in Gruissan for a weekend.
Of course, it is possible to stay much longer if you wish.
The Gruissan salt marsh
My favourite part of this stay in Gruissan is undoubtedly the salt marsh! The landscapes are incredible, not to mention the colour of the water. By the way, do you know why the pink flamingos are pink? It’s because they eat a type of shrimp rich in carotenoids, the molecule responsible for the colour.
To learn even more and to be able to get closer to the salt flats, I recommend that you book the guided tour. Also, for a unique experience, treat yourself to a massage in the trailer set up on site, overlooking the pink lake. 🥰
💌 Reservation on the official website. Price of the guided tour: €11.50 per person.
The centre of Gruissan
The centre of Gruissan has a lot of charm. It is shaped like a snail, which gives an original configuration to the buildings.
Stroll through the narrow streets to discover the old architecture and the small shops. Don’t miss climbing the Barbarossa Tower for a 360° view of the salt works, the small centre, the pond and the sea! It will take you no more than 5 minutes to reach it. Be careful, the path is slippery in some places.
The beach of the chalets
If you’re wondering what to do in Gruissan you can’t miss the famous Chalets and the beach. They were featured in the 1980s film 37°2 in the morning.
As well as swimming at the Chalets beach, you can walk or cycle around the area to admire the iconic houses on stilts.
To hire an electric bike, go to the Gruissan harbour office. Information and booking
What to do in Gruissan? Visit the area on an electric scooter
To discover the diversity of the wild landscapes that Gruissan has to offer, the best way is to take a ride on an electric scooter with TrottUp. I warn you, don’t expect to ride on the same style of scooter that is available in the big cities.
This activity is fun and 100% ecological with zero Co2 emissions, accessible from 12 years old. You need to know how to ride a bike, because it’s the same principle, both in the look of the machine and in the way it’s used. The guides will take you to see the most beautiful places around.
Electric boat trip with picnic
To be able to admire Gruissan from the sea, what could be better than a private cruise in an electric boat without a licence? To spend a pleasant moment on the water, I recommend picking up a seafood platter at La Perle Gruissanaise, to enjoy on the boat.
Hiking in La Clape
The massif de la Clape is a preserved natural area of 15,000 hectares. The fauna and flora that reign there are a must see during your weekend in Gruissan.
It is possible to visit it on foot or during a guided excursion by electric bike. Book here.
In my opinion, the three must-see places in La Clape are
The Hermit Garden, the Auzils Chapel and its marine cemetery
It will take you 15 minutes to walk up to the chapel. All along the path you will see tributes to the men lost at sea, which is very moving. The Chapelle des Auzils is therefore dedicated to the marine theme. It opens its doors from the end of April to the end of October, only when the Occitan flag is raised. In any case, go up there because the view from up there is exceptional!
The Rec d’Argent lake
The Rec d’Argent lake is an artificial lake with a brilliant emerald blue colour. The path to get there is very pleasant and full of flowers. When I was there, there was unfortunately not enough water so it didn’t look the same as usual in terms of colour.
The potholes of Gruissan
For a swim in an exceptional natural site, take the Guitoune path to reach the Gruissan potholes. Be careful, it must have rained a few days before for the potholes to be filled with water! When I came, they were completely empty but here is what they look like in the best conditions:
Paddle on the pond of Mateille
Just next to the Mamamouchi restaurant, which I’ve mentioned below, is Akila Gruissan. Here, you can indulge in the joys of water activities in complete safety: paddle, kayak, windsurfing… Plus, the team is adorable!
What to do in Gruissan? My good addresses
Here are my recommendations for good places to eat or drink during your weekend in Gruissan:
The restaurant La Cambuse du Saunier at the Salin de Gruissan: excellent seafood platters and other local dishes, seasoned of course with the local salt. The setting is splendid, especially with the pontoons installed on the edge of the salt marshes!
Le Formentera: for tapas and cocktails in a trendy place with a pool. Good value for money and a great atmosphere with a DJ set.
Mamamouchi restaurant: a decoration worthy of Bali, a magnificent view of the pond at sunset, a friendly service. An address not to be missed.
La Perle Gruissanaise : an institution for seafood platters, to take away
La Petite Brasserie: delicious traditional homemade dishes, located in the centre with a small terrace.
I hope to have enlightened you on what to do in Gruissan for a weekend! I’m at your disposal in comments if you need more information. See you soon ☀️.
For more guides to the south of France, check out the blog!