© VACHERON ALAIN

Visit the Fish Market

Discover behind the scenes at the Arcachon fish market.

Don’t leave Arcachon without seeing this unusual spectacle: the arrival of the fishing boats, unloading and the sale of fish at auction in the Arcachon Fish Market. It’s a captivating visit which takes adults and children behind the scenes of local fishing.

Get up at dawn for an exclusive discovery.

To be immersed in the fishing world and experience the effervescence of this singular location dedicated to the sale of fish and shellfish, there’s only one thing to do: get up early!

Your appointment will be at 6.30 a.m. with Jean Lannes on Mondays and Thursdays all year round. At 83, Jean Lannes is an authentic local character who gives guided tours of the Arcachon Fish market and makes it possible for you to enter a world which is usually reserved for fishing professionals.

Please be aware that the fish market only offers products coming from non-industrial, coastal fishing, from boats that just go out for the day. Therefore, exceptionally fresh, high quality fish is guaranteed!

 

The Arcachon Fish Market: a showcase of local know-how

During the visit you’ll follow the whole process, from catching the fish to its shipment, including unloading, weighing, grading, trading, auction and sale. You’ll learn all there is to know about the seasons and fishing methods, the fleets, the variety of species caught in the Bay of Biscay and Arcachon Bay. In the market hall at the Port, you’ll be delighted by what you see: turbot, hake, sea bass, sole, royal sea bream, meagre, squid and octopus etc.

On the first floor, in the auction hall of Arcachon Market, you can be a spectator at the sale of fish and shellfish caught the same day. From high on the rows of seats, traders and professional buyers scan the crates of fish which are transported by a conveyor belt, while keeping an eye on the huge screen displaying the name of the boat, the species, the starting price at auction. Selling starts right in front of your eyes; the atmosphere is lively!

Whether you are familiar with the maritime environment or a complete novice, this cultural experience will plunge you into the heart of Arcachon’s traditions and economy. The fish market currently sells 2,000 tonnes of fresh fish annually.

This rewarding visit which is enjoyed by all age groups most particularly introduces children and teenagers with the reality of the fishing profession.