Calaisis the closest port to theUK, and one of the busiest ports inFrance. Mainly serving ferry connections withDoverin theUK, nearly everyone who travels from theUKtoFranceby boat will have visitedCalaisat some point in their life.
Known as a popular destination for those going on a booze cruise,Calaisis not just made up of cheap cash and carry’s. There is a lot more to the town than you may imagine, and you can spend time enjoying everythingCalaishas to offer.
Once inCalais, you can easily hire a car, and it’s one of the best ways to get around. Just three hours from Paris, two fromBrugesinBelgiumand the gateway toFrancefrom theUK,Calaisis a great place to hire a car and start your holiday and the possibilities are endless.
Devastated during the Second World War,Calaishas been rebuilt over the last sixty years and is not a beautiful port town, with chalk cliffs and sandy beaches.
Calaisshares a similar climate to that of the south ofEngland, which should be of little surprise as they are just 20 odd miles apart andCalaisis further north than parts of Devon andCornwall.
Things to do when hiring a car in Calais
Calais Town Hall
A Beautiful building that has been standing for over 100 years, this Flemish building has a clock tower, with a spire standing 75 metres tall. Every hour an electric bell rings, letting people know the time and because of it’s height you can use the town hall as a landmark to guide you. The hall is open between 8 and 12 and 1.30 and 5.30 daily.
The Six Burghers Monument
Called ‘Les Six Bourgeois’ in French, the stunning monument features six men who once surrendered to King Edward III, hoping that their inevitable hanging would present them with freedom. Designed in 1985 by a sculptor named Rodin, the monument is built in memory of the Kings wife, who begged for their forgiveness and they were spared execution.
A modern looking lighthouse, standing 51 meters above the ground it is built on, this lighthouse has 271 steps, which visitors can climb for a breathtaking view from the top. The White cliffs ofDover, 26 miles away can be seen on a clear day. Open Wednesday to Monday between 10 and 12, and 2 and 5.30.
Calaisis not famous for its beaches, but as a seaside town it certainly has them. They are particularly good for water sports, with many offering sailing, kayaks and wind surfing. Many also feature beach side restaurants and cafes if you need something to eat.
Built in 1329, the Citadel de Calais is a fortification that was designed by Philippe Le Hueperel, to protectCalaisfrom attacks. It didn’t work as the English ruledCalaisfor hundreds of years, using the citadel themselves before handing it back in 1558 whenFranceretookCalais.