Crossing border France to Spain

Discussion in 'France' started by Mikey RV, Nov 7, 2015.

  1. Mikey RV

    Mikey RV Funster

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    We are at the moment heading down the west coast of France towards Spain via Nantes, La Rochelle,Bordeaux, what is the best way into Spain from Bordeaux, is there tunnels or do we have to go mountain roads over Pyrenees and which one is best please, I have a very nervous wife about the mountain roads. We are 9 metre tag axle. Thanks in advance for info.
     
  2. Armytwowheels

    Armytwowheels Funster Life Member

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    Hi Mikey RV
    We are driving from France to Spain, now this minute. We have opted for Bordeaux, Bayonne, Biarritz, across the boarder at Hendaye, overnight stop at Hondarriba and then onto Donostia San Sabastián in the morning. From there we will hang a left and make our way over to Zaragoza and then on to Valencia.

    We think (first time we have done it) we will be missing out the real lumpy twisty bits, unless someone comes along and tells us different?

    P.s we are a 8.5 m tag.
     
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  3. Boringfrog

    Boringfrog Funster

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    As above.
     
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  4. PhilandMena

    PhilandMena Funster

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    This is the best way into Spain from Bordeaux.
    I have copied this from the attached link which you find useful and is now in the resources section with a similar one for Spain:
    http://about-france.com/tourism/no-tolls-routes.htm

    The A63 south of Bordeaux
    South of Bordeaux, follow the A63 toll motorway as far as the the Spanish border. The cost (2015) is 14.40€ for a car, about 50% more for a car plus caravan; but this will save about an hour in normal traffic conditions. The last 50 km of this toll motorway, southwest of Magescq (exit 11) , are particularly recommended, as the Bayonne area is built-up and busy. The A63 links directly at the border to Spain's Autopista A-8, and thereafter to the Spanish motorway network..
    Note however that this motorway is not pay-on-exit; it is pay-at-toll-points, of which there are four. The two most northerly of these can be avoided by leaving the motorway between exits 18 and 17, and again between exits 12 and 11. Time lost: about a quarter of an hour. Tolls saved: 3.50 Euros saved twice (more than that if you have a camper van). This is not recommended for trucks, as they have to follow a longer alternative route.
    To avoid tolls (southbound) :
    Leave A63 at exit 18 "Le Muret". Turn south on D834 to Castelnau. Here turn right onto D410, then D10E which runs along the eastern side of the motorway. Rejoin motorway at Liposthey (exit 17).
    At exit 12, follow D947 for 1 km towards Castets. Then left onto D378. When this starts running along the western side of the motorway, fork left onto D10E. Rejoin the motorway at Magesq (exit 11).
     
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  5. Mattyjwr

    Mattyjwr Funster Life Member

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    It is an easy road to drive. Have fun.
     
  6. Nettie

    Nettie Read Only Funster

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    Keep those wheels turning, & we will meet you down the bottom after xmas..(y)
     
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  7. Armytwowheels

    Armytwowheels Funster Life Member

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    Our experience today, being a Saturday, we should have gone on the toll road to avoid Bayonne and Biarritz, both very busy but easy enough to follow sat nav.

    Our choice of overnight stop at Hondarria was chocca and no chance of our length of van getting in. Under 7 metres would of been OK but we couldn't find anywhere for our fairly low over hang. We pressed on to another stop at Listorreta, Errenteria, Camperstop site no. 15155. Plenty of overhang space behind normal parking spaces. It should be quiet later when all the picnickers go home!!
     
  8. Hagstrom

    Hagstrom Funster

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    We prefer the C121A at the border, to Pamplona. We're 8.4 m and it's an easy drive.
     
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  9. Dogsense

    Dogsense Funster

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    YJ55 Are you sure it is C121A and not N121A?
     
  10. PhilandMena

    PhilandMena Funster

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    Not wanting to split hairs but I believe it is the N-121-A . (Well it is according to Google Maps). Anyway, you are spot on about it's use. I have used it a number of times and now my preferred route when heading across to Benidorm from Irun.
     
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  11. Boringfrog

    Boringfrog Funster

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    Yeah, totally recommend bypassing Biarritz. Also did you try and get parked by the port at Hondarribia? Thought there was parking for lots of MHs?
     
  12. pjay

    pjay Funster

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    They stopped the free overnighting in the carpark by the marina when the aire opposite first opened a while back.
    We visited again earlier this year but its still forbidden with 'no motorhome' signs all around the marina.
    We overnighted up in the hills at the carpark by the Guadaloupe fortress. Nice and quiet up there once all the visitors have gone.
    coords 43.36834 -1.82053

    Pete
     
  13. Armytwowheels

    Armytwowheels Funster Life Member

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    Yep, that's where we tried to get in. There were spaces for smaller vans but not ours. We tried getting the over hang over a pavement but it touched the raised ground.

    The smaller Aire just along the road, which we stopped at in May this year has been closed, just cars only there now.
     
  14. namwaldog

    namwaldog Funster

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    We always try and use the toll to cross the border unless you want to have a look around the towns of St Jean de Luz, Irun or San Sebastian, We join the A63 in France from the D810 at St Jean de Luz and stay with it through a couple tolls until we cross the border and then there is the option of the first road off to the south the N121A. (as above) I found there is always a lot of hgv's on this but not enough to bother you. Our favourite is to stay on the toll (now the AP8) until the AP1 then the A1 for Tolosa. which is toll free all the way to Vitoria Gastiez where there is a good City Centre Aire
    There is a mind blowing part of the A1 at 42.955658, -2.235638 where the southbound (uphill) carriageway does a tight left dual carriageway hairpin, crosses the northbound carriageway tunneled beneath you, then you hairpin right again to re-cross the northbound to get back on the 'correct 'side of the road. Really plays tricks with your mind.
    We once missed the AP1 exit and had to come off at the GI-631 and then the G1-2634 for Tolosa. This is a road right through the mountains with spectacular views and lovely villages but there are some real hairpins but we managed no problems with a 7.2m Coachbuilt MH. The Basque place-names are unpronounceable!!

    These links to Streetview show the hairpins I describe on the A1 showing they are nothing to worry about...

    https://www.google.co.uk/maps/@42.9...3VJtaCb-UBXdTxjefAkQ!2e0!7i13312!8i6656?hl=en

    https://www.google.co.uk/maps/place/43°22'06.0"N+1°49'13.9"W/@42.9566704,-2.2353161,3a,75y,168.01h,84.68t/data=!3m7!1e1!3m5!1suH_s-Q2D59XfyHe2j75KYQ!2e0!6s//geo1.ggpht.com/cbk?panoid=uH_s-Q2D59XfyHe2j75KYQ&output=thumbnail&cb_client=maps_sv.tactile.gps&thumb=2&w=203&h=100&yaw=171.68942&pitch=0!7i13312!8i6656!4m2!3m1!1s0x0:0x0?hl=en

    This shows the GI-2634 climbing through the mountains..
    https://www.google.co.uk/maps/place...itch=0!7i13312!8i6656!4m2!3m1!1s0x0:0x0?hl=en
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2015
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  15. Boringfrog

    Boringfrog Funster

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    We stayed at the marina in January, no signs and plenty of MHs.
     

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  16. John Laidler

    John Laidler Funster

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    I've cycled that route. Never had problems with traffic on the paths we used except for b***** Biarritz! Avoid like the plague. :)
     
  17. pjay

    pjay Funster

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    Thanks, it must be free again out of main season then. We last visited June this year and the electronic barriers were in operation for acces to the car park complex and a no motorhome sign.

    The aire around the bay has also been removed from the CC-Infos and Areasac.es databases so as previously mentioned, looks like its been shut down.

    Pete
     
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