Yesterday, Olympic fever inspired one London man to try to swim across the Atlantic to America, from a beach in Biarritz.
But despite his insistence that he was up to the challenge, he was rescued by coastguards who convinced him that it probably wasn't a good idea to continue.
The Daily Mail
reports that the 34 year-old holidaymaker was visiting Biarritz with friends. He told them that he was planning to swim to New York to carry the Olympic spirit across the Atlantic.
They let him go because they thought he was joking, and knew that he was a strong swimmer.
However, according to RFI
, the man was victim of a joke as his friends told him that he would be picked up by a boat.
At 3.30pm, lifeguards watched as he swam past the buoys 300 yards out to sea, which mark the legal limit for swimmers. He then continued to swim until he was out of sight.
At this point, lifeguards called out a helicopter and a diver dropped into the sea and explained to the man that it was a good idea to turn back.
At the same time, lifeguards arrived in a rescue dinghy. The man then realised that he might have made a mistake, so lifeguards threw him a line and towed him back to the beach.
Laurent Saintespes, senior officer at Biarritz airbase told Agence France Presse: "He was a bit naive. But at a time when the Olympics are taking place in London you have to see the funny side of things."
Click on the image below for ten wonderful cities by the sea...
- Nice, France
Enjoy the French Riviera at this seaside city that attracts everyone from families to super-stylish locals. There are 15 private and 20 public beaches to choose from over seven kilometres of coastline in Nice. Be sure to bring your flip flops and something harder than a towel though as the beaches are covered in pebbles. The Promenade des Anglais is Nice's famous promenade and perfect for an evening's stroll next to the beach.</p>
- Barcelona, Spain
It seems this city has everything you could want from one - superb food, architectural masterpieces, rich and varied nightlife, a colourful history AND sandy beaches! The ones in the north, like Llevant and The Nova Mar Bella are quieter and attract mostly families, locals and those looking for cleaner and tranquil beaches. In the south, beaches like Sant Sebastia and Barceloneta are popular with tourists and locals and are closer to the city centre.</p>
- Cape Town, South Africa
White sand, dramatic views and varied beaches make Cape Town a paradise for sand and sea lovers. The trendy set head to Clifton Beach for sunbathing and volleyball. Camps Bay attracts large crowds and has chic restaurants, Llandudno is one for surfers and Sandy Bay is a nudist beach. False Bay has some good beaches for swimming, including Muizenberg, Fish Hoek and Boulders Beach, which is a must-see for its colony of African penguins that live here.</p>
- Venice, Italy
Not many people know this, but Venice isn't just about the canals - there's are beaches too. Venice Lido is an island of 11 kilometres that attracts families and summer tourists to its sandy beaches and warm Adriatic waters. The Gran Viale Santa Maria Elisabetta is the island's main street and houses many hotels, shops and cafes. Every year the Venice Film Festival takes place at Venice Lido at the Palazzo del Cinema.</p>
- Los Angeles, USA
Life's a beach in LA where you can choose from eight coastal hotspots in the city. The most famous is Venice Beach (pictured) and a stroll along its boardwalk will give you the chance to marvel at the entertainers, roller-bladers and weird and wonderful characters it attracts. Manhattan Beach attracts sporty types with its miles of volleyball courts, Malibu's Surfrider Beach is, as its name suggests, a surfer's paradise and El Matador Beach is perfect for romantic couples looking for a secluded spot!</p>
Santa Monica State Beach attracts the crowds, Hermosa Beach is frequented by trendy sunbathers, Cabrillo is popular with families and nature enthusiasts will love exploring the sea caves and tide pools of the beach at Leo Carrillo State Park - LA definitely has it covered for beach lovers!</p>
- Riga (Jurmala), Latvia
Just a 30-minute drive away from Riga's city centre, you'll find the resort town of Jurmala, which was once known by the Germans as the beach of Riga. Its white sand and shallow water makes the 33km coastline popular with local families and tourists.</p>
The beaches are clean too with the Majori and Bulduri parts of the shoreline flying Blue Flags. Here you can rent pedal boats and at Pumpuri Beach there's kite surfing and windsurfing. Dubulti (pictured) attracts beach football and volleyball fans to its annual competitions.</p>
- Sydney, Australia
As one of the most famous beach cities in the world, Sydney has a wealth of beaches for you to experience Australia's laid-back lifestyle and take in the city's sights. Bondi Beach is one of the world's greatest and is a haven for surfers, cafe lovers and Sydney's beautiful crowd. Other top Ocean beaches include Coogee and Manly. You'll find some harbour beaches in Sydney too, like Balmoral and Washaway.</p>
- Antalya, Turkey
With over 300 days of sunshine, it would be odd for this city not to have beaches. Thankfully Antalya does and they're pretty good too with turquoise waters and mountain views. Konyaalti is a clean pebble beach with chairs and umbrellas for visitors to rent. Lara Beach on the east of the city offers dark sand and calm seas. Kaleici's harbour (pictured) is the city's old port and has the small Mermeli Beach on its west side.</p>
- Biarritz, France
Beach life in Biarritz is as luxurious and glamorous as it gets in a city. It has nice beaches, majestic hotels and architectural marvels that attract rich and famous visitors. It's also home to the Biarritz Surf Festival and one of the surfing hotspots of Europe. The largest beach is La Grande Plage, which is great for bathing and surfing and located close to Biarritz's centre. Port Vieux beach is popular with families and Miramar Beach is a beautiful beach with its iconic Le Rocher de la Fregate rock.</p>
- Vancouver, Canada
This urban centre in Canada may not spring to mind for a beach break, but surrounding the metropolis is a cluster of ten clean, sandy beaches with spectacular views of the city's skyline. They're ideal for walkers in the winter and swimmers in the summer when the cool waters provide a refreshing escape from the heat. The beaches - English Bay, Sunset, Kitsilano, Jericho, Locarno, Spanish Banks, Second and Third - attract various visitors from families to sport fans and sunbathers to those who bare all!</p>