The Dune of Pilat, situated at the entrance of the Bay of Arcachon, opposite the Point of Cap Ferret, is the biggest sand formation of Europe.
Measuring 105 meters high, 2700 meters long, 500 meters wide and with a volume of 20 million cubic meters of sand!
Contrary to what one might think, the Dune of Pilat is of reasonably recent origin. In 1855, it was only 35 meters high. According to experts, its origin is due to the disappearance of an enormous sand-bank that, in the 18th century, used to lie before the coast, and also linked to the permanent supply of sand by the wind.
The Dune of Pilat is moving, and what it looses to the Ocean on the west side, it gains at the eastern side to the forest, at the rate of some 4 meters a year.