Calais Mini Guide
Calais is a coastal town in northern France which overlooks the narrowest point between the UK
and France. The Channel is only 34 kilometres wide there and on a clear day you can see all the way to the English coast. Calais has been a prosperous port throughout its history mostly due to its convenient location.
How do I get There?
Swim, or you could just take one of the daily ferries that run from Dover to the French port. Day trip tickets are readily available and well priced. The ‘Chunnel’ or Channel Tunnel to give its correct title is another popular option, more expensive than the ferry but it has a lot more novelty value, it surfaces in Calais. Bus connections are available from all over France and mainland Europe.
What Should I See?
There are not many historical sites predating the war in Calais as the port suffered a heavy bombardment but one that survived and is worth seeing is the Tour de Guet on the Places d’Armes. Also on the Places d’Armes you will find the local outdoor markets. There is a wartime museum located near the main train station that was used during World War II as the localities German
military headquarters. The towns belfries are designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and definitely worth a visit.
So There’s got to be Shopping, Right?
A good day trip shopping destination, Calais offers many bargains especially for those who like a tipple - wines, spirits, beer and cigarettes are all very popular purchases due to the low taxes on these items in France. There are a huge variety of hypermarkets and warehouses offering bargain prices for shoes and clothing.
While it’s not famed for its night life, there are quite a few good restaurants and many types of menu available in Calais, from fine French cuisine to fish & chips you’ll find something to suit whatever your tastes. There are plenty of little bars dotted around the town a disco called 555 in the town centre and even a small casino if you’re feeling lucky.