Nature – Environment
- La Pointe du Payré walk
Leaves from the Plage de la Mine carpark – Jard s/Mer
The walk to the Point du Payré is one of the most beautiful on the Vendee. Stroll through one of the prettiest forests of green oaks (owned by the coastline conservation society) which line the Atlantic shoreline. The flora that grows here have adapted in a variety of ways to the sea spray and soil conditions and so give a display of plants of different shapes and colours. Taking the footpath which overhangs the cliffs, you can take in the geological history of the South Vendee. The different geological strata can be seen in different colours from blue to ochre. However, little by little, the cliffs which are not currently protected are being eroded by pressure created from so many people walking along them and could soon disappear.
Guided walks are available by reservation (duration 3 hours)
- La Maison du Marais (The House on the Marsh)
Longeville sur Mer
5 km trail signposted by arrows across the marsh canals and navigated either by small boat or by canoe.
Open from April to September.
Distance from your campsite : 7 km
- Marais Salants (Salt Marshes)
Salorge de la Guittière
In this preserved setting, the diversity and history of the salt marshes of la Guittière can be enjoyed as a group. Between the flight of the wading birds and the shimmering colours, the salt makers take pleasure in carrying on the traditional techniques and in preserving this unique site. Once the economic driving force of the region, salt making now relies on the work of a few people. The colour of this salt has brought fame to the village since the process used here is unique in France. Come and learn about the salt maker’s work, the way in which the marshes work for fish, as well as the waterways during a 2 hour long activity.
Distance from your campsite : 9 km
- Parcs ostréicoles (Oyster Farms)
At the heart of the Payré estuary, the Guittière oyster farms use the tides to take advantage of the specific briny plankton which packs the channel and imparts it’ unique taste to the oysters. Indeed, this unique mild taste as well as the colour of the oysters have made this area famous.
A guided visit is available by reservation (lasts 2 hours) and finishes with an oyster tasting. This is washed down with the local wine, bread, lemon and butter. This pleasant moment takes place in an old Salorge (salt loft) where the exhibition is also housed.
Distance from your campsite : 9 km
- Low Tide Rock Pools
Plage de la Mine (or other rocky beaches)
The rock pools capture a multitude organisms of different shapes and colours. Hidden from view and protected from drying out, the fauna groups together in pools or the smallest rock crevasses. Here you can find winkles, crabs, prawns, limpets and different types of seaweed.
2 hour long trips are available on reservation. Working semi-autonomously, groups will be challenged to gather flora and fauna specimens, therefore, appropriate footwear is required. Each specimen caught will be examined in terms of its morphology and biology with all animals being released at the end of the trip.
Distance from your campsite : 3 km
- L’Ile d’Yeu
Leaving from St Gilles Croix de Vie
From April to September
Ile d’Yeu is one of the most beautiful islands in France and harbours a large variety of exceptional landscapes. Situated 17km off the Vendee coast, it can only be visited on foot or by bike. For a long time it was the premier tuna port of the Atlantic coast and once again vows to become an active fishing place. Take the boat (crossing lasts for 45 mins to 1 hour) and discover the port of Joinville; take a walk or bike ride to the wild coastline with its inlets and cliffs; enjoy the historical heritage of the island…
Distance from your campsite : 50 km
- L’Ile de Noirmoutier
To get onto Ile de Noirmoutier you can take the bridge which links it to the mainland or, the Gois passage (the only submersible road in the world. This road “under the sea” is 4.5km long and only links the island to the mainland during low tide. You can drive, cycle or walk across and you will notice that, even in summer, the causeway is guarded by mounted policemen. Be sure to consult the tides timetable as the road is submerged twice daily at high tide!!!
The Gois passage is a rich rock pool fishing area on the Vendee. At low tide you can fish for clams, cockles, scallops, mussels, razor clams. Please be reasonable about the amount you fish as the fauna is regulated.
Commonly known as “Mimosa Island”, it has a variety of landscapes such as dunes, forests of green oaks and salt marshes.
Noirmoutier is also known for it’s “Bonnotte”, early potato, harvested in springtime and much coveted by its leading restaurant owners.
Distance from your campsite : 128 km