A message in a bottle has made an incredible journey - and sparked a new friendship - after being washed almost 4,000 miles across the planet.

Max Vredenburgh dropped the bottle into the sea at Rockport in the US state of Massachusetts on August 21, 2010.

The then-10-year-old included details of some of his favourite things - and a return address for whoever should find it to write back.

The original letter reads: "Hello, my name is Max.

"Whoever is reading this please write back to," including a return postal address.

He continued: "I'll tell you a little bit about myself.

"I am a 10-years-old, I like apples, I like the beach. My favourite colour is blue, I like animals, I like cars and I like Outer Space.

"Please write back. Sincerely, Max Vrendenburgh."

In October, almost a decade later, it washed up on a beach on France's south-western coast and was a found by a man, known as Mr Dubois, who appears to be from the Netherlands.

Mr Dubois then wrote a letter back to the now-19-year-old author.

The bottle travelled across the North Atlantic Ocean. Credit: Google Maps

The response read: "Hello, I found your message in your bottle on October 10, 2019 on a beach in France between Contis and Mimizan.

"According to your date, August 21 2009, it will have taken nine years to cover the 6000 km [3728 miles] that separates us.

"You have grown a lot during that time: 10 to 19-years-old."

Attached were maps pinpointing the location where the bottle was found.

In a surprise twist in the story, Max said the pair are now chatting on social media after the response letter was shared more than 121,000 times.

Sharing screenshots of the pair's conversation, Max said: "I just want to say thank you for writing back man.

"The story would have ended when I threw the bottle."