Montalivet, CHM Montalivet or just CHM Monta, is about 175 hectares in size, open this year from 30 Mar until 28 Sept, and adjoins the beach to the south of Montalivet-Les-Bains. It boasts a mixture of about 1000 privately owned bungalows and caravans, 960 caravan sites and 260 camping sites. There are over 12 km of internal roads, joining the 20 villages that make up the resort, each having its own character and characteristics. Families tend to return annually, usually to the same village, and booking the same weeks. Each village has its own outside shower and kitchen blocks, especially catering for the camping nature of the place. CHM Monta opened in 1950 and they claim about 4000 people can be accommodated.
To get there is probably best by car or taxi. Make your way to Montalivet-Les-Bains on the D102 road, about 1km before you get to the town, turn onto Avenue de l’Europe, go past the Aldi supermarket and follow the signs. This place is well sign posted with a couple of billboards in the vicinity, leaving you with no uncertainty about what sort of resort it is. The address is 46 Avenue de l’Europe, 33341 Lesparre-Médoc, and is on your right hand side – it’s a bit hard to miss. Pull up in the car park and make you way in to the reception area. Don’t be surprised if you see one of the residents come in from the other side wearing club uniform and engage the staff and naturally no-one bats an eyelid.
This resort has the usual sports facilities: tennis, archery, volleyball, football, three restaurants, a shopping centre with 20 shops, a cultural centre with a multilingual library and a cinema. There are two cybercafés and five commercial WI-FI portals, a mail system and cash points. All this is fronted by a 3 km white sand beach, with two supervised swimming points. The site’s second swimming pool with flumes (whatever that is) is a recent innovation. (All according to their website). This all means it’s really well serviced and appointed. The bars/restaurants boast bands and various entertainment of an evening. I didn’t stay around for this but you’re likely to have a great fun night.
All in all it is really a very large caravan park and the resort really does promote that its a camping park – there is no apartment accommodation here, as that maybe not strictly speaking in line with the naturist ethos, but they do have fixed cabins and bungalows for rent.
This resort also requires you to have and wear photo ID at all times – you need to have a small plastic card that you wear on your wrist, which you get when you check in – but most people didn’t seem to have theirs most of the time.
This was the first resort I went into in the area and entered from the beach entrance. They have a sentry box at the entrance to the resort along the path from the beach, it was mostly unmanned but I did see an older woman checking passes one afternoon. She was naked except for a two way radio. There are also adolescents riding around on BMX bikes in red T-Shirts also with two-way radios. They are there to give a helping hand to pitch your tent, give directions, carry your beach bag etc. I suspect they also ensure ‘Naturalist values’ are respected and are on the lookout for any intruders.
They claim to have about a security staff of 40 who work 24hrs a day and a staff of 8 lifeguards at the pool who also ensure ‘Naturist values’ are respected. The lifeguards also set the example of ‘Naturalist values’ theme being naked as well.
The pool area is quite large with water slides for the kiddies and a bit of landscaping that includes a rock platform where one of the lifeguards attempts her best impersonation of a mermaid.