If you’re visiting Montpellier, planning a day to the beach is a must. The best beaches near Montpellier are sandy with access to the Mediterranean Sea. You will find gorgeous coastlines that are untamed in Villeneuve-lès-Magueloneare versus more urban sea spots like Palavas or the Grande Motte.
And with many of them easy to get to from Montpellier, it’s easy to plan a day trip or even a longer stay. You can access many of the beaches without a car. The public transport around Montpellier is smooth and connects the city to many of the beaches.
Having visited Montpellier, I recommend dedicating at least 1-2 days at the end of your trip for the beaches to truly reward yourself. Depending on your mood and what you feel like doing, every beach is different and will provide you with a unique experience. Here are the 5 best beaches near Montpellier.
5 Best Beaches near Montpellier
#1 La plage de la Tamarissière (Agde)
La plage de la Tamarissière in Agde is a best beach near Montpellier. I’m talking about a gorgeous untamed beach.
The water and sand are great for swimming and sunbathing. There are also showers available for after swims, along with a few restaurants and a play area for kids.
Be sure to visit bunker 638 on the beach, which was built in anticipation of a potential WW2 landing. How rad!
How to Get to the Beach from Montpellier
How to Get from Montpellier to La plage de la Tamarissière
Access La plage de la Tamarissière by Car
By car: Take the A9 highway from Montpellier and follow it to the Agde exit. Then, take the D612 road towards Agde and continue on the D37 road towards La plage de la Tamarissière. The distance is approximately 65 km and the journey takes around 45 minutes depending on traffic.
Access La plage de la Tamarissière by Public Transportation
By public transportation: Take the train from Montpellier Saint-Roch station to Agde station (approx. 30 min). Then, take the bus line 3 from Agde station to La plage de la Tamarissière (approx. 20 min).
#2 Plage du Pilou (Villeneuve-lès-Maguelone)
If you’re tired of the classic urban beaches and are looking for a vast preserved nature oasis breath of fresh air, then this gem is for you.
Another best beach near Montpellier, Plage du Pilou in Villeneuve-les-Maguelone is located about 10km South- West from Montpellier.
Note: Partly nudist (naturiste) beach
The preserved site at Villeneuve les Maguelone begins at the bottom of the Pilou parking lot, where you must park your car.
Cross the bridge to reach the “presqu’ile of Maguelone.” There be transported by the pink flamingos, gorgeous landscape, roaming seagulls and diversity of birds. The kids will love it.
Hop on the seasonal petit train du Pilou (little white train) which is free and takes you from the Passserelle du Pilou to the Pilou beach. This is another fun kid activity. Breathe in the clean air as bask in the beautiful scenery.
After that visit the Maguelone Cathedral, clearly visible with its imposing and majestic structure at the top of the hill. Admire this fortified 12-13th century cathedral church’s Roman style.
How to Get from Montpellier to Plage du Pilou
Access Plage du Pilou by Car
Take the D116 road from Montpellier and follow it to Plage du Pilou. The distance is approximately 12 km and the journey takes around 20 minutes depending on traffic.
Access Plage du Pilou by Public Transportation
Take the train to Villeneuve-les-Maguelones (or Garcia Lorca station of tram line 4) from Montpellier and then get on bus number 32 bus to the Pilou station there. You can then simply walk to Pilou beach –a short distance away.
#3 Plage du Lido (Sète)
The Plage du Lido at Sète is located at the ‘Promenade du Lido’ situated between porte 20-24. It’s a beautiful beach that’s spacious, clean and with easy access parking. It’s considered one of the most beautiful beaches with white sand and blue water.
While sunbathing you will have a great view of Sète and the Mont-Clair. You can also walk alongside the beach on the pedestrian promenade which also has a cycling lane.
How to Get from Montpellier to Plage du Lido
Access Plage du Lido by Car
Take the D986 road from Montpellier and follow it to Plage du Lido. The distance is approximately 35 km and the journey takes around 35 minutes depending on traffic.
Access Plage du Lido by Public Transportation
- Take the train from Montpellier Saint-Roch station to Agde station (approx. 30 min). Then, take the bus line 3 from Agde station to Plage du Lido (approx. 30 min).
- Alternatively, take the bus line 102 from Montpellier Gare Routière to Sète Gare SNCF, then take the bus line 9 from Sète Gare SNCF to Plage du Lido (approx. 1 hour).
- Another option is to take the tram line 3 from Montpellier to Pérols centre, then take the bus line 131 from Pérols centre to Plage du Lido (approx. 1 hour).
#4 Plage Du Petit Travers (Carnon)
Plage Du Petit Travers in Carnon is a unique beach where dunes, wooded areas, and beaches coexist. Considered one of the best beaches near Montpellier, it’s also a popular site for kitesurfing enthusiasts, with one of the first European schools established there.
Along with Palavas Les Flot, Carnon is very popular during peak season due to how close it is from Montpellier.
How to Get from Montpellier to Le Petit Travers
Access Plage Le Petit Travers by Car
Take the D986 road from Montpellier and follow it to Le Petit Travers. The distance is approximately 18 km and the journey takes around 25 minutes depending on traffic.
Access Plage Le Petit Travers by Public Transportation
Take the tramway ligne 1 direction Odysseum until you get to the stop Place de France. Then from Place de France, take the 606 bus to Carnon.
#5 Plage de l’Espiguette (Le Grau Du Roi)
La Plage de l’Espiguette at Grau du Roi is a family-friendly seaside resort just 40 minutes away from Montpellier and the largest marina in Europe (capacity-wise).
Make sure to visit Espiguette Beach with its 10 km long sandy beach which feels so smooth with a Sahara-like feel. It’s also a great beach to learn kitesurfing.
How to Get from Montpellier to Plage de l’Espiguette
Access Plage de l’Espiguette by Car
From Montpellier, take the A9 motorway towards Nimes and exit at Le Grau du Roi.
Access Plage de l’Espiguette by Public Transportation
Getting to Espiguette Beach by public transport is not super straightforward like other beaches. You will need to hire a taxi or rent a bicycle in the end from Grau du Roi, which is manageable but it’s definitely simpler to go by car.
Take the tramway ligne 1 direction Odysseum until you get to the stop Place de France. Then from Place de France, take the 606 bus to Le Grau Du Roi. From here you will need to hire a taxi or a bicycle to get to the beach. It’s a nice cycle to the beach.
Other Beaches Near Montpellier:
Palavas-les-Flots probably the most famous is an ancient beach resort that has been around ages and holds a lot of value for the French. Located just a few miles from Montpellier, it can be an option if you are short on time and want to visit the closest beach to Montpellier.
Related: Palavas les Flots: Your Ultimate Day Trip from Montpellier + how to get to Palavas Les Flots from Montpellier
Because of its low price, and distance from Montpelier it’s a great option to go when there’s no crowds. I went during the off peak time and loved it.
#7 La Grande-Motte
Only 30 minutes from Montpellier, La Grande-Motte is great if you’re looking for a family-friendly resort or just gorgeous untamed beaches.
The port in La Grande Motte is characterized by cool pyramid style buildings from the late 60’s. You can enjoy water activities on the Etang du Ponant and play some tennis and golf.
The Couchant Beach is a good family friendly. There is also Grand Travers beach if you’re in need of an adventure and want to explore a beautiful untamed beach.
Once you’re done stroll around the city center called the Point Zéro for some restaurants and shopping.
How to Get from Montpellier to La Grande-Motte
Access La Grande-Motte by Car
La Grande-Motte can be accessed by car or public transportation. From Montpellier, take the A9 motorway towards Nimes and exit at La Grande-Motte.
Access La Grande-Motte by Public Transportation
Take the tramway ligne 1 direction Odysseum until you get to the stop Place de France. Then from Place de France, take the 606 bus to La Grande-Motte.
Activities on the Beaches
If water sports are your thing. There are a ton of water sports activities at the beaches near Montpellier like swimming, surfing, paddleboarding, and kayaking in the Mediterranean Sea. Some beaches even offer equipment rental services for these activities, so you don’t need to worry about bringing anything.
Montpellier Beach Restaurants and Bars
Montpellier beaches are home to a wide range of restaurants and bars. Make sure to enjoy the local cuisine and international food and cool drinks as you soak up the sun.
Why must everything be so fast paced? After scouring the city of Montpellier maybe all you need is a nice quiet and relaxing day of unwinding at the beach. No stress. Just get in the vitamin d, read a book, feel the warm sand beneath your toes, or take a nap. It’s could adulting right?
Montpellier Beach Resorts
They are many beach resorts for you to stay near Montpellier if you want to be close to the beach. These range from different budgets from low cost to more luxurious options.
Montpellier Beach Hotels
There are many beach hotels around Montpellier for you to enjoy the beach and all the amenities a hotel has to offer. Again, there are a wide range of hotels that cater to different budgets and preferences. Some hotels even have beachfront rooms with gorgeous views of the sea.
Montpellier Beach Camping
If you prefer to stay close to nature, rather than splurge on hotels, then camping is a great alternative. You can rent caravans, and mobile homes or backpack and bring your own tent. You can enjoy the peaceful surroundings, fresh air, and beautiful views of the sea while camping.
If you’re looking for a great beach to sunbath and swim, Lido beach is a great option. Use the promenade walkway along the beach during the winter along with a bike lane. If you’re a water sports adventurer, Villeneuve-lès-Magueloneare is one of the best untamed beaches for windsurfing, kitesurfing, and is also worth a visit for its protected reserve and stunning cathedral on the hilltop.
If you’re looking for a livelier beach experience, La Grande Motte is a great option. This modern resort has well-managed beaches and plenty of activities like water sports and beach volleyball. La plage de la Tamarissière is another popular spot for tourists and locals alike, with a long stretch of sand.
For those who prefer a more natural beach experience, the unspoilt beaches of l’Espiguette, Le Grand Travers are worth exploring. These beaches are bordered by inland lagoons and boast acres of golden sand and crystal blue water. They offer a peaceful retreat from the bustling city.
Having explored the best beaches near Montpellier, there will always be a beach for every mood waiting for you -whether you’re looking for a beach to relax or a lively beach with plenty of activities.
Is it Possible to Get to Beaches Near Montpellier By Bike?
Yes, Montpellier is a bike-friendly city, and biking to the beach is a popular option. There are bike paths that run along the Lez River and through Lattes to Palavas-les-Flots. You can also take Tramway 3 to Bassin Jacques Coeur and then bike to Carnon.
Does Montpellier Have a Beach?
Montpellier is situated inland and does not have its own beach. There are, however, many beaches very close to Montpellier that are accessible by car or public transportation. Palavas-les-Flots, Carnon-Plage, and La Grande Motte are some of most popular surrounding beaches.
When is the Best Time to Visit Montpellier Beaches?
While the beaches are accessible throughout the year, the best time to visit Montpellier beaches is during the summer months of June, July, and August when the weather is warm and sunny.
During these months, the average temperature is around 28°C, which is ideal for swimming. However, it’s important to note that these months are also the most crowded. So if prefer less crowds visit during May or September.
Another factor to consider when planning your visit to the best beaches near Montpellier is the sea temperature. The water’s temperature around Montpellier is at its warmest in August and September, with an average of 23°C. So go during these months if you wish to go swimming.
Also this isn’t news, but Montpellier can occasionally experience rain showers during the summer months. So if you’re planning a beach day, make sure to double check the weather to avoid any unexpected rain.
Overall, the best time to visit Montpellier beaches is during the summer months of June, July, and August when the weather is warm, and the sea is at its most ideal temperature. However, if you’re looking for a quieter beach experience, consider visiting during May or September.
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Latifah is a vegan foodie who loves travelling and cooking plant-based recipes. She loves sharing her favorite travel spots and adding a sprinkle of confetti to your day.