Beautiful Carteret

Karl Thomas very kindly sent this report on 19th June 2021. Karl is based in Jersey.

New marina – photo by Karl Thomas


With regards to Jersey/France Covid and border arrangements. The SCHENGEN form needs to be submitted ahead of trip and sent to the email addresses on the form.… I had an invitation to meet customs at the ferry terminal by reply. I met 3 customs people who processed the information and I was asked to return to when I left France later. My passport duly stamped for both entry and exit.  This may be an issue if you are frequent visitor as the passport will fill quickly ☹️. Covid regulations (changing often) and declaration form to be completed for air / sea travel to take with you on arrival.… UK/Jersey/Guernsey currently amber. A Vaccine certificate allows entry without isolation. A PCR test required up to 72 hours before entry or antigen 48 hours. See or for returning to the islands.


That’s the paperwork covered, now the boaty bit. Ecrehous for breakfast for me. Today was neaps with HW 1400 Jersey, Carteret marina indicated opening at 1245 French time. I was early on the tide as wanted a mooch about outside the breakwater and the new gate for research purposes. The sandbank at the breakwater is back.  Extends approx 30 m SE from the beacon. Photo taken an hour before marina opening.
The new lights for the new gate can be seen from seaward don’t rush in if still showing red. I tied up at the ferry terminal to visit customs as I was early, the ladders here are awful and the tide will run quite hard when most people will be arriving.   Customs were not there yet as I was early so I moored up at the marina and went back to the ferry terminal. The new entrance with gate closed.  Signal lights on post to Port by the road.
The gate opened at 6.3m of tide at Carteret (navionics/boating app).  The board said 1.8m but the digital gauge said 1.5.  As there is a slope over the gate at first opening I would err on the safe digital value. The digital gauge is blank until gate opens.
As I was milling about shortly before opening there are some 1.5m patches so if you are deeper draft better to wait out at sea until the gate opens.  There is also not masses of room should a few boats be waiting with the current starting to flow. New pontoon M  just beyond La Marine hotel.   This is for the big boys. I had pre-arranged to moor here due to logistics.  The pontoon is high above the water approx 1.2 m.  Big cleats and plenty of wash from passing boats. I was advised no electric or water, however,  there are boxes so I guess that’s coming.   No cleats landside on this for small boats. The new ‘super’ pontoon  M.   It really is a hulk.    It is for visitors, think 50’+  But prob only 3 maybe 4 without rafting up.   I did not pace it.  The only positive was my boat was so small you could not see it from land behind the pontoon!   The ramp leads to the corner by Bar du Port. Bit of current to be expected here, probably more than in the old marina.
Usual check-in at the marina office.  I did not view the previous visitor pontoons but assume with a few less large boats and there may be space or overflow in the local marina.  New restaurant at YCBC. Lots of restaurants around Carteret open but none looked busy.   Current restrictions. Curfew 2300-0600.  Restaurants outside OK, inside 50% capacity.   This all changes Monday 21 June to be more relaxed. I think. Masks are mandatory until next week but lots of people not wearing in open air.  I wore mine in all indoor spaces and and was judicious with hand sanitizer Checked out with customs before leaving France. PCR test in Jersey and isolating until my 1 negative. Thanks Karl
Carteret is a lovely small town with excellent restaurants. The marina has limited mooring space for visitors and gets very busy in the summer with lots of rafting up. The only official Visitors mooring area is alongside the pontoon at the far end of the marina. However, there are exciting developments with a new barrage/gate further out to sea. The 2021 season will be interesting and we will see what mooring and other facilities are introduced. It is well worth a visit, especially out of high season. Navigation is fairly easy, the trip up the “river” to the marina is good and there is plenty to see and do, especially if you like good restaurants. The nearby Barneville Carteret provides a good long walk or cycle ride and there is a very good beach. Just make sure you plan your timings well so you do not get stuck and beware of the swell for the last 6 to 8 miles if the wind is from the west. Watch out for crab pots and ropes.
Marina tide gate times 2021 –… Marina gate – next few days –… DECLARATION NAVIRE DE PLAISANCE ARRIVANT HORS ESPACE SCHENGEN (immigration) PREAVIS immigration MARITIME Cherbourg.pdf Marina information –…… Webcam of marina extension –…

Covid19 report – July 2020

Below is a very informative and helpful report that Marcus Ferbrache from Jersey posted on my Brittany and Normandy Facebook group –… For anyone considering their first trip of the year to France but worrying about what a visit would be like under COVID you may be interested in our first-hand experience last weekend. We set out from St Helier to Carteret at lunchtime on Friday. Before leaving Jersey we had filled out the online form at to book a COVID test on our return. NOTE YOU HAVE TO FILL OUT THE FORM MULTIPLE TIMES, ONCE FOR EACH PERSON ABOARD. We also filled in the online form to reserve a berth at… though we didn’t get a confirmation and so I rang Carteret marina before setting sail just to make sure everything was ok. Our arrival went smoothly and we were met by the marina dory and directed to an empty finger berth, the lady in the dory taking our lines. We headed into town, not knowing quite what to expect and feeling a bit like escaped convicts! We had dinner at la Kalakiki in the evening. You don’t need to wear a mask when walking around the town but you put one on just before entering a restaurant, and keep it on only for the moments until you take your seat at the table. Then you can enjoy your meal as normal. If you get up to go to the toilet, pay the bill or leave then you need to put it back on. This is strictly enforced and the waiters and waitresses make sure everyone follows the procedure. After our meal, we dropped into the Yacht Club de Barneville Carteret where we were made welcome and had a few drinks, which could be paid for in cash. There were very few other customers. We went to the marina office to pay for our berth on Saturday morning. Masks must be worn in the office, and only one person is allowed in at a time. The marina staff are behind a perspex screen. We were given a form to fill out and sign to declare that we were in good health. We were told to keep this with us at all times in case we were stopped by a customs and immigration official. Apparently, you can keep this form between visits. We had pre-booked to hire electric bikes which are collected at the marina office. The online form at… is available in French and English. The cost is 25 € a day, or 45 € for two days. We’d brought cycle helmets with us. The bikes have built-in padlocks and are supplied with a canister of puncture repair stuff. Collecting the bikes, including instruction on how they worked, took about 10 minutes. We headed off to Barneville following the maps provided, though we could have just followed the signs. After checking out the Saturday market (the only time we wore masks outdoors, as it as crowded) we headed on to Port-Bail following the fairly well-marked cycle route that follows the seafront for part of the way and then through winding country lanes. It was good to discover that there are cycle lanes along the main roads. The cycle route took us past Portbail marina and we stopped for a very pleasant lunch at Le Repère, sat on deck chairs on the dune overlooking the estuary. It was the same routine here – mask on when going inside to the bar or to use the loo. We cycled back to Carteret, the electric bikes’ ‘turbo’ mode making light work of the one hill, and headed to the beach. On the way, my phone rang and it was the COVID helpline in Jersey to tell us that our PCR test was booked for 2 pm on Sunday. It amazes us that there’s no proper supermarket in Carteret itself, so we rode to the big Carrefour in Barneville, the 2km ride taking under ten minutes, to do some shopping. Everyone in the supermarket was wearing masks. It is down a hill, so the electric motors proved their worth again on the way back up. We returned the bikes (they have to be back by 1900) and then it was off to dinner at L’Abri where we had a very warm welcome and great service. It was busy and they were turning customers away so bookings are essential. We had excellent oysters and galette completes, ending up too full for dessert. €34 a head including wine seemed very good value. We logged a transit report with Jersey Coastguard before leaving Carteret and they asked us to confirm that we’d submitted the online form to arrange a test on arrival. If we hadn’t they wouldn’t have let us leave France. After arriving back in St Helier mid-morning we had time to head home, have showers and lunch before heading up to the COVID drive-through testing station just along the road from Jersey Airport at the pre-arranged time. We were a bit anxious about what the test would be like, but it was fine. We drove in, confirmed our names and dates of birth, and then had a swab poked at the back of our throat while we said ‘ahhh’, then the same swab rubbed around the inside of one nostril. The whole process took under 5 minutes and we were free to go. You’ll later receive a text message, which you have to reply to saying ‘WELL’ if you haven’t developed any symptoms, or COVID if you or anyone in your party has done. I’m currently working from home awaiting the test results which are currently taking on average 31 hours from the time of arrival. In summary, we had a great trip and a warm welcome. We quickly got used to wearing masks and it wasn’t a big deal – everyone else was doing the same. The test was quick to arrange and quick to have done on our return. Thank you Marcus When asked about the new Barrage – Marcus said “Where it narrows to pass by the construction site of the new sill – the drying height was consistent with the rest of the estuary. It was narrow though. Two boats could pass. There is a slight deviation in the channel and yes you end up to starboard on the way up but it just means you are mid-estuary rather than well over to starboard.”

Photo as at 18th September 2020

The work on the marina extension started in September 2019

The work is progressing well – June 2020 See… The new port with an area of ​​13 hectares against 4.7 today, will accommodate nearly 700 boats along the pontoons. A few places will remain accessible at anchor and a special pontoon will await the special boats (more than 20 meters long). Sandy materials that will be reused to recharge the beach near Barneville, to shape a pedestrian and cycling path between Carteret and Barneville and which will support the GR 223. Part of the sediment will also shape a repository for the birds of the harbour. Useful new site including tides –… This is the site for the completion of the information prior to visiting –… News 26th June 2019 Following the sandbank still present at the entrance to the channel we have set up a special mark “yellow buoy Diameter 1.50m” she’s located at the position 49’22”101N and 1’47”250W She is in the 60 degrees at a distance of 90meters from the red beacon. Caution It is strongly advised to pass between the red beacon to this yellow buoy. Thanks Carteret Marina

Yellow buoy and red post at low water. Photo by Carteret Marina June 2019

The WiFi now has a number you type in when you complete the registration and it will last you for most of the year. This works fine but you do seem to have to reconnect every hour or so which is a pain. Code needed for the facilities which are the same as always. As at May 2019, Jeton is no longer required for showers. Free showers!

An additional pontoon, not for public use – photo by Edward F

Please note, the new pontoon was for the sailing club etc and not for visitors.

Visitors moorings are on the last pontoon – on the East side (left of picture) – pictures by Colin S Le Conte


Good sheltered marina – if only there were some fingers/pontoons for visitors


The Marina is at the end of a tidal channel


Marine Hotel in the distance – keep to the left going up the channel


When entering the Fairway – please keep to the port side to get more water – max speed 5 knots


Drying out area on the left – Marina gates just appearing on the right of the photo


Always go between the poles – the wall is submerged. As you come out – turn sharp right as there is sometimes a sandbank outside the gates. April 2018 they were removing the sandbank


The Marina office where you pay your fees and get a code for the toilets, showers need jetons which you purchase from here


It is tidal and a big range – note where it dries out first


Always keep to the left when going towards the Marina


Beware of sandbank on the outside of the marina gates, it can be shallower than the water over the gate

There is a small market in the square near the station selling fruit, veg, fish and bread every Thursday morning through the year. Especially welcome as most shops seem to close on a Thursday out of season. Bureau du port Tel – Fax – e-mail – VHF Channel 9 Please note office opening times for 2019 website – Harbour Office (and Semaphore) – Marina is open about 2.5 hours either side of high tide. This varies depending on the state of the tide. In spring tides it opens for longer and neap tides it can be as little as 2 hours either side of high tide. An hour before that, the water can be halfway down the channel, but it always seems to come up in time! Tides – Marina opening times…… I have been looking at tides, speaking to people with experience and looking at the various boat trips. The last 7 or 8 miles into Carteret can be pretty lumpy. Normally this is worse leaving Carteret as you have West winds and strong tide on the shallow seas. The period 1 1/2 hours to 1hour before High Water appears to have the least tide. Before that, the tide is South East and after that, the tide is North West. So if the wind is from the North or North West, it is likely to be rough from High Water onwards. Great time lapse video of the time coming up the channel to the marina by Chris de Putron –
Walk to Barneville
The boat works area to the East of the marina is now fenced off, a secure area and it is not possible to walk through the area. This means you cannot get through there to get to Barneville for the market etc. All the paths have been fenced off. Instead, walk past the Yacht Club and go to the roundabout and then follow the quiet road toward Barneville. Turn right down the track and then across the bridge. Turn left through the small Hamlet called Tot. See the lavoir on the left and walk past the old train station and over the railway line. Turn left at the small roundabout and that is your quickest route. Despite information to the contrary, it is a good 30 mins walk. Carteret is an ideal place for bikes and will mean you will get to Barneville in less than 15 mins. Map Weather –…………
Web Cam
Unfortunately, you cannot see the visitors pontoon in the web cab picture. That would be really useful when approaching the marina as you could see how busy it is before you get alongside.

Le Carteret Hotel
Carteret16 Carteret17 Near the railway station Tel :2 33 04 95 63. We are told it is nice there (2019) and do great Pizzas and other food – must try it again.
La Kalakiki – LA CALE MARINE

La Kalakiki with green signs (Heineken)

La Cafe Marine-Carteret Tel 00 33, very popular and good, more “pub” type food. Open February to October. They do not take reservations. The menu is limited but has 1kg moules, entrecote, lobster, omelette etc. Well priced and the menu is on the placemats with an English translation. They normally open at 19:00hrs. Omelettes are good! Staff were pleasant, helpful and efficient and speak English.
Le Russell – Cave a Manger
Tel 02 33 53 84 90 – email I am not sure if Le Russel is a wine bar that sells food or vice-versa. Who cares – both are excellently done. We wanted to go somewhere different and as Le Russel was fairly new, we went there for early dinner (7:30). There are only a few tables and it probably seats approx 40 people. As you go in, the place is dominated by a large bar and lots of wine bottles in a rack on the left side. You can order wine by the case or chose a bottle. They are priced for drinking there or taking away. The menu is very limited. What is on the blackboard is what is available. But whatever they have listed, it is excellent. Very tasty, well-cooked, great service, nice wine (you go to the rack and chose it) and a great evening out. The staff speak good English. There were 4 of us and with 2 courses a bottle or wine and other drinks it was just over Euro100. Awesome.
Carteret18 Opposite the Information Office, good selection and good for a snack. Gets very busy and check opening times. Now has an outside eating area as well.
Yacht Club
Carteret19 Tel – – has free wifi. Ask for the code
La Potiniere
Located on the edge of the beach, the setting of this restaurant/bar is hard to beat. The lunchtime menu includes dishes such as fresh fish and Salad Gourmand. An open charcoal fire turned sardines into something really special. It’s very popular with the locals so on a sunny summer’s day, you may have difficulty getting a table without booking in advance. It is probably the best part of a mile from the marina. Tel 02 33 52 29 14‎

Amazing Panoramic photo from the road up to the Cap lighthouse – photo by Mark Page

Le Cap
2010 – very popular – even on a Tuesday night so book ahead. Excellent food and service. You do need to book. This place, like many others in Carteret, has really upped its game over recent years. Damon Logis Hotel and Restaurant, Tel, website, e-mail
La Tivola pizza restaurant
La Tivoli is located in the main ‘high street’ with a picnic table located on the pavement outside. You can’t miss it. Look past the greasy spoon cafe appearance and plastic furniture and you will discover some of the best pizzas in northern France. Thin, crispy bases with just about every topping option imaginable – even Calvados! A small section of Italian-style dishes are also available and with a one-litre carafe of wine for ten Euros, you really can’t go wrong! Damon
Le Rivage (Hotel des Ormes)
For something a bit special, I thoroughly recommend Le Rivage restaurant located in the Hotel des Ormes, a stone’s throw away from the marina. The quality of decoration and attention to detail is the first thing you will notice. This small restaurant is not cheap (around 45 Euros pp for 5 courses) but if you are a bit of a foodie, the extremely French cuisine will be right up your street. You are not in danger of overeating but you will leave having experienced some wonderful flavours and an enjoyable night out. The restaurant is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays.  – Damon. Recent reports are that the service is really fast and a bit rushed and you may have finished your meal in under an hour.
Bar du Port

One of my favourites

Not for food but for a drink or early morning coffee
We visited this tapas bar which is upstairs in the concrete ferry terminal. A strange building but amazing views. The lady in charge who sounded English (American?) said it had reopened a few years ago and was very popular with the locals. They serve a good range of well-priced cocktails. Really nice there and well worth a visit, especially if it is nice enough to sit outside. L’ABRI. A new restaurant opposite the Marine Hotel. The people from Le Gohan (restaurant between Barneville and the beach) have converted the old sailing store/lifeboat boathouse. Quiet, atmospheric and great views of the estuary from the window tables upstairs. Good service. Good selection of galettes and steak/chips, Maigret de canard etc. Very good dessert selection. 90 euros for three people, including half a litre of very good Cotes du Rhone and a Kir Royale. Can be warm upstairs. Good English is spoken. Can be hot upstairs in the summer. Market day
  • Thursday morning: Carteret
  • Saturday morning: Barneville-Bourg
  • Sunday morning in July & August: Barneville-plage
Car Rental / Hire cars / Taxis We rented through who were very helpful and efficient. Where it says “Modifier l’agence” on the website, type in Cherbourg and then a drop-down list should show Dielette, Carteret Yacht Club, Saint Vaast and of course Cherbourg. They delivered the car on a truck. Taxis and Ambulances of the Cote des Isles provides a good service – Tel +33 (0)2 33 04 61 02 Ferry to…