Virgin’s Rock (Rocher de la Vierge)
The Virgin’s Rock (Rocher de la Vierge) is a rocky outcrop featuring a symbolic statue perched atop an observation deck facing Biarritz’s Port Vieux (Old Harbor). Come here to see a statue idolized by sailors and to enjoy fantastic views. Enjoy scenic coastal walks in the surrounding area to visit other major attractions of Biarritz.
Reach the rock by crossing a small iron footbridge, built by Gustav Eiffel in 1887. Look up at the white statue of the Holy Virgin, from which the rock takes its name. Seafarers erected the statue on the rock in 1865. It symbolizes a bright and mystical light that allegedly emanates from the rock and protects sailors from becoming shipwrecked.
Go to the large observation deck to enjoy views of Biarritz’s Basque coastline and excellent photo opportunities. Watch surfers ride the rolling waves at the nearby beaches. Look for landmarks such as the 19th-century Biarritz Lighthouse (Phare de Biarritz) and the luxurious Hôtel du Palais. On a clear day, see the rugged peaks of the Spanish Pyrenees. Visit at sunset and watch the sun drift down over the Bay of Biscay.
Limited free parking is available close to the start of the bridge. Additional parking is available at Place Sainte Eugénie, which is less than 10-minute walk away. A free shuttle bus stops in the Port Vieux. While here, visit Port Vieux’s attractions, such as Saint Eugenie Church (Eglise Sainte Eugenie), the Sea Museum (Musée de la Mer) and Biarritz’s traditional fishing village, Port des Pêcheurs.
Don’t miss the chance to enjoy picturesque coastal walks. Follow the road that leads south from the Port Vieux to the popular surfing beach of Côte des Basques. Alternatively, walk north along the coast to Grand Plage (Grand Beach).
You can access the Rocher de la Vierge any time of the day, although the views are limited after sunset. Bear in mind that when the waves are big, the water can splash onto the bridge and viewing deck.