Le Touquet (France) – July 2015

Le Touquet was our destination in July and as it was summer we got the Met Office to lay on some sun for us, which is always nice of them and was a pleasant surprise.

Our plan was to leave Redhill, head down towards Lydd then take the shortest route across the channel and follow the French coast down to Le Touquet.  Our plans were soon changed as a quick look at the NOTAM revealed the first ever electric-powered cross-channel flight was taking place from Lydd to Calais… thanks Airbus – Pilot Didier Esteyne in the E-Fan did however make a successful flight, so congratulations Didier and the Airbus team.

We were now routing via Hastings and first to leave was the Cabri G2 followed by the two R44’s (PGGY and PAMY). We could not have asked for a better day with clear blue skies as far as your eye could see and a calm channel below with the occasional wake from a passing ship. Paul & G2

Golden sands welcomed us as we approached the French coast, I’d forgotten how nice it really was as we headed south along the coastline.  Le Touquet airport is located just inland from an estuary so it was relatively easy to spot. One thing you do notice on the approach are the huge number of ponds that carpet the land below, this is actually the remnants of World War II and bomb craters have now filled with water.

Landing at Le Touquet was quite straightforward and was just a case of paying our landing fees. There was is a kiosk for customs / border control but no one was in attendance so we walked straight through. R44s Parked

Le Touquet is only a short drive away from the airport but the taxi’s seemed to be on strike on the day we arrived so we decided to walk, there is however the option to hire a push bike at the airport if you preferred.

It was time for lunch so we made our way to Perard’s a very nice seafood restaurant that I would recommend. I think Ken has visited this place a few times and he went straight for the sea food platter with lobster claws towering in front of him. It was a really nice lunch enjoyed by all so thank you very much Ken and Nic. Seafood

Lunch was finished off with a wander down to the seafront to take in the views followed by ice creams all round … thanks again Ken… they really do look after us at EBG.

It was now time to head back to the airport… TAXI…  TAXI… seeming like there was only one taxi in Le Touquet we split up from the rest and myself, Ken and Nic decided to take the short walk back… Short Walk… one hour later we arrived back, yes we had got lost, it could have been worse but the GPS smartphones saved the day J

After a slight delay and admin fix to the flight plan we were away and heading back across the channel back to England. Fifty minutes later we were back on the pads at Redhill and it was the close to a fantastic day out with friends.France!

If you get the chance to fly into Le Touquet then I would recommend you go, it’s a great place to visit with golden beaches, nice restaurants but above all a fabulous little adventure to experience in a helicopter.

Paul I
EBG Pilot Club Member

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