Dunkerque, again


A gentlemanly pootler, these days
West Wickham

I was on a thread a few months ago about arriving in Dunkerque and avoiding the nasty bits, and was told to keep left, head up for the Route Des Dunes and cut down the farm track into Loon Plage. Because it was 5:30am local time and still dark, I missed the track but went through Mardyck and picked up the road to Loon Plage with no bother. I then headed down to Craywick and on through Brouckerque, Bergues, Hondschoote, Houtem and Adinkerke to De Panne.

I'm going again in June. I want to go to De Panne again but I don't want to do that detour if I can help it (pretty as Bergues is, I have lots of other pretty places to see). I'll also have the benefit of daylight.

Is it really so bad, going through Grande-Synthe? Suggestions, please?


Comfy armchair to one person & a plank to the next
Grande-Synthe is not so bad IMO. I've been through twice, the first time using the bus road north of the centre and the second straight through the centre (with a small kink that the road takes to avoid the very centre). Totally unremarkable small mid/late-20th century anytown in the centre - a French Bletchley, perhaps. I think the scary parts in the news are well to the south of the centre, around the motorway, railway and industrial zones, where people can find trucks to stowaway on.

Petite-Synthe on the other hand is dreary to cycle through: an unreconstructed old main road with tatty buildings and door-zone cycle lanes. However, I plan to hook-turn left at the first set of traffic lights after the level crossing, then right to join the new cycleway alongside Boulevard Simone Veil - or I might cut through Grande-Synthe estates to join it at the D601/D625 roundabout or follow the D1 through Mardyck to join it near the Stade Dessinguez. That should then flow nicely into the centre of Dunkerque, then maybe a small wiggle (there's a blocking one-way with no except-cycles on streetview - it might have been corrected now) to get onto the Quai des Jardins, then Quai des Corderies, Quai aux Fleurs and pick up the railway cycleway through Lefferinckoucke, Zuydcoote and Bray-Dunes, right on the border to junctions 39 and 1 and that's pretty much De Panne station.

I'll have gone before you do, so there should be an update on https://www.cyclechat.net/threads/fietsparadijs-limburg-2020.256443/ with what I find as I travel through.
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