May 28, 2023


General Inside You

Holiday on the Island of Oléron in the French Atlantic Coast


Have you ever assumed of getting a holiday break on the island of Oléron? Although many worldwide travellers flock to the Côte d’Azur in southern France, the locals from areas these types of as Paris or Bordeaux invest their vacations on the Island of Oléron (Île d’Oléron). Currently being the 2nd-largest island of France on the Europe continent, the Island of Oléron is connected to the mainland by a bridge and is property to roughly 22,000 inhabitants.

Oléron has very contrasting landscapes, from a seaside vacation resort to an oyster farming hub, from a pine forest to the salt marsh landscape, and even from sandy beach locations to rocky foreshores. For the duration of our household holiday break in Bourcefranc-Le-Chapus, we did a handful of actions there, such as traveling to the lovely oyster huts and having a boat trip by means of the salt marshes. It is also well worth mentioning that the island offers several campgrounds, such as Sandaya campsite, which welcomes you all over the season!

8 municipalities of the island give several relatives functions on the Île d’Oléron. Some of them are unique to the spot and are genuinely unforgettable. In which to go on holiday break on the island of Oléron?  Here are some routines to prepare when you have a Holiday break on the Island of Oléron:

  • Spend fifty percent-day at Fort Louvois
  • Mountaineering and biking close to the island
  • Stroll close to the imposing ramparts near the citadel of Le Château-d’Oléron
  • Visit the Salt marshes in Le Grand Village Plage
  • Chill out on the shorelines
  • Take a look at vibrant oyster huts

Spend half-day at Fort Louvois

On the way to the Island Oléron from Bourcefranc-Le-Chapus, the initial sight is Fort Louvoi on the correct facet of the bridge. This 17th-century maritime fortification is simple to access at low tide on foot and by boat at substantial tide. Nonetheless, the avenue to the fortification is protected by seaweed and thus really slippery. You can explore its barracks or sign up for a novel tour that usually takes you back again by time with the full household. And, you can also take part some online games to have exciting or have an interactive working experience. 

Climbing and biking around the island

Considering the fact that the island has an ordinary elevation of 1 metre, it is a superb place to cycle all around. The island has lots of shady parts, so even in the summertime, cycling is also a common activity for the total family members.

Our family loves climbing. We identified a person mountaineering trail at the northern suggestion of the island around the lighthouse, the Phare de Chassiron. The lighthouse, crafted on the cliff, was to begin with painted in white like its very similar-hunting ‘twin’ the Phare des Baleines on the Ile-de-Ré. Confused by sailors and potentially perilous, in 1926, the a few 6-metre-substantial black bands were being painted to distinguish the lighthouse, the Phare des Baleines.

The spherical walk close to the lighthouse rewarded us with rocky coastal sights. We went there late in the afternoon in stormy weather conditions. On the other hand, the sunset was still struggling as a result of the rainy clouds, providing us a lightning possibility to seize the sights. Some areas have warning indicators because the cliff has erosion. Hence, we had to acquire precautions walking on the cliffside. Regardless of of the disagreeable temperature, we had a fantastic coastal walk.

Stroll around the imposing ramparts close to the citadel of Le Château-d’Oléron

The citadel and ramparts encompassing the medieval district of Le Château-d’Oléronare are available calendar year-spherical. The ramparts of the site give a panoramic watch of the Purely natural Reserve of Moëze-Oléron. It is interesting to check out how the tides change the landscape of the port. At the low tide, I found a slim channel, Chenal du Château crossing the sand bank to the sea. This waterway assures the site visitors route for the fisherman’s boats.

The vast internet site features quite a few structures with free of charge entry, these kinds of as the arsenal, the Powder Journal, and the Royal Bastion. You can be a part of a guided tour or just take a little prepare excursion to learn the citadel and the ramparts.

Visit the Salt marshes in Le Grand Village Plage

Salt marshes and salt farming have contributed to the Charente’s landscape. The salt farming marketplace applied to be the livelihood in the Center Ages but declined after the salt marshes dried up from the finish of the 19th century. 

In modern decades, salt farming is revival, and several salt producers welcome site visitors to share their enthusiasm, featuring tours to introduce salt farming operates and background. Today, visitors can also take a look at the salt marshes on their bikes or seek the services of a boat at Le Port des Salines, like we did. It took us about 45 minutes to comprehensive the boat excursion. There is a little shop marketing salt at unique levels. As an iconic element of Charente-Maritime’s heritage, a salt marsh is a worth-see position if you have a getaway on the island.

Relax on the shorelines

To arrive at quite a few sandy seashores, you initially go the large pine forests via modest roads, for instance, the Forest of Saint-Trojan. However, only some of the beaches are supervised by lifeguards for the duration of the summertime. Other shorelines present water sporting activities from surfing, sailing, fishing, kayaking, canoeing, and sand yachting. In the Springtime, the water is way too cold for swimming, but the infinite sandy seashores, particularly in the course of the reduced tides, are great for going for walks!

Check out vibrant oyster huts

Not much from the citadel, at the cross of the Chenal du Château and the Avenue du port, there are several colourful huts, Cabanes de créateurs(the designer huts). They utilized to be the oyster huts. To keep away from the aged properties remaining dilapidated nearby city hall rents them to artists. Now, artists and craftsmen decorate the locations with their creative imagination and deliver the previous oyster huts again to everyday living. When I strolled in the port of Château-d’Oléron, my eyes ended up drawn to a blue hut, a purple one particular, and a yellow one at the waterfront. The artists, from sculptors, and jewelers, to cutlers, have been building and repainting the spots for yrs. The internet site is a person of the greatest sites on the island for photography.

But, if you want to go to the performing oyster huts, head to the century-outdated oyster-farming village of Fort-Royer in Saint-Georges d’Oléron. These multi-colored huts there is the witness of regular oyster farming.

Vacation guidelines for a getaway on the Island of Oléron (Île d’Oléron)

In which to keep

There are a great deal of choices from great motels to getaway resorts and camping web pages, for example, Tenting Signol, a 4-star campground which is 150 metre from the city centre and 800 metre from Boyardville Seaside.

How to get there

  • By road: Ile d’Oléron is arrived at by a toll-totally free bridge from Bourcfranc-le-Chapus on the mainland. There is no cycle lane on the bridge so consider safeguards. From Paris or Bordeaux, choose A10 to Saintes and then drive 45 km to Bourcfranc-le-Chapus. 
  • By h2o: From La Rochelle, get ferries to the island. Please visit to get the thorough information and facts.
  • By practice: Regional trains run to Saintes, Rochefort, and La Rochelle, and close by Surgères connect with the TGV to Paris (a few hrs).


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