Holiday on the Island of Oléron in the French Atlantic Coast

Have you ever considered of getting a holiday on the island of Oléron? Although many intercontinental travellers flock to the Côte d’Azur in southern France, the locals from spots these as Paris or Bordeaux commit their holidays on the Island of Oléron (Île d’Oléron). Being the next-premier island of France on the Europe continent, the Island of Oléron is related to the mainland by a bridge and is property to about 22,000 inhabitants.

Oléron has quite contrasting landscapes, from a seaside resort to an oyster farming hub, from a pine forest to the salt marsh landscape, and even from sandy beaches to rocky foreshores. Throughout our household holiday break in Bourcefranc-Le-Chapus, we did a handful of functions there, these as visiting the wonderful oyster huts and owning a boat trip via the salt marshes. It is also value mentioning that the island features a lot of campgrounds, this kind of as Sandaya campsite, which welcomes you through the period!

8 municipalities of the island present a lot of relatives pursuits on the Île d’Oléron. Some of them are unique to the spot and are actually memorable. In which to go on holiday break on the island of Oléron?  Here are some pursuits to approach when you have a Vacation on the Island of Oléron:

  • Shell out fifty percent-working day at Fort Louvois
  • Mountaineering and cycling all over the island
  • Stroll about the imposing ramparts near the citadel of Le Château-d’Oléron
  • Go to 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 to start with sight is Fort Louvoi on the ideal side of the bridge. This 17th-century maritime fortification is quick to access at low tide on foot and by boat at substantial tide. However, the street to the fortification is protected by seaweed and therefore pretty slippery. You can investigate its barracks or be part of a novel tour that can take you back by means of time with the whole loved ones. And, you can also participate some games to have exciting or have an interactive experience. 

Climbing and biking close to the island

Due to the fact the island has an ordinary elevation of 1 metre, it is a great location to cycle all around. The island has several shady locations, so even in the summertime, cycling is also a preferred action for the complete relatives.

Our loved ones enjoys mountaineering. We identified a single hiking path at the northern suggestion of the island around the lighthouse, the Phare de Chassiron. The lighthouse, constructed on the cliff, was at first painted in white like its identical-wanting ‘twin’ the Phare des Baleines on the Ile-de-Ré. Confused by sailors and potentially hazardous, in 1926, the three six-metre-high black bands ended up painted to distinguish the lighthouse, the Phare des Baleines.

The spherical wander all over the lighthouse rewarded us with rocky coastal views. We went there late in the afternoon in stormy climate. On the other hand, the sunset was even now struggling through the wet clouds, offering us a lightning likelihood to capture the sights. Some sites have warning indicators considering the fact that the cliff has erosion. Hence, we experienced to acquire precautions going for walks on the cliffside. Irrespective of of the unpleasant weather conditions, we had a very good coastal wander.

Stroll about the imposing ramparts in the vicinity of the citadel of Le Château-d’Oléron

The citadel and ramparts bordering the medieval district of Le Château-d’Oléronare are accessible 12 months-round. The ramparts of the web site supply a panoramic look at of the Pure Reserve of Moëze-Oléron. It is appealing to watch how the tides adjust the landscape of the port. At the minimal tide, I recognized a slim channel, Chenal du Château crossing the sand financial institution to the sea. This waterway guarantees the targeted traffic route for the fisherman’s boats.

The extensive web page features several structures with free entry, these types of as the arsenal, the Powder Journal, and the Royal Bastion. You can join a guided tour or take a modest teach tour to uncover the citadel and the ramparts.

Go to the Salt marshes in Le Grand Village Plage

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

In new several years, salt farming is revival, and various salt producers welcome site visitors to share their enthusiasm, giving excursions to introduce salt farming performs and history. Today, website visitors can also discover the salt marshes on their bikes or retain the services of a boat at Le Port des Salines, like we did. It took us about 45 minutes to comprehensive the boat vacation. There is a compact shop marketing salt at unique levels. As an legendary part of Charente-Maritime’s heritage, a salt marsh is a really worth-see put if you have a vacation on the island.

Take it easy on the beach locations

To attain many sandy seashores, you initial go the large pine forests by means of tiny roads, for illustration, the Forest of Saint-Trojan. Even so, only some of the beach locations are supervised by lifeguards through the summertime. Other beaches provide h2o sporting activities from browsing, sailing, fishing, kayaking, canoeing, and sand yachting. In the Springtime, the drinking water is as well cold for swimming, but the infinite sandy shorelines, specially in the course of the minimal tides, are fantastic for strolling!

Examine vibrant oyster huts

Not significantly from the citadel, at the cross of the Chenal du Château and the Avenue du port, there are lots of colourful huts, Cabanes de créateurs(the designer huts). They employed to be the oyster huts. To steer clear of the old properties becoming dilapidated nearby city corridor rents them to artists. Now, artists and craftsmen enhance the destinations with their creativeness and carry the outdated oyster huts back again to life. When I strolled in the port of Château-d’Oléron, my eyes were being drawn to a blue hut, a purple just one, and a yellow a person at the waterfront. The artists, from sculptors, and jewelers, to cutlers, have been building and repainting the places for a long time. The web-site is just one of the best spots on the island for pictures.

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

Journey tips for a holiday break on the Island of Oléron (Île d’Oléron)

The place to remain

There are a lot of decisions from fantastic inns to vacation resorts and tenting internet sites, for instance, Camping Signol, a 4-star campground which is 150 metre from the town centre and 800 metre from Boyardville Beach front.

How to get there

  • By street: Ile d’Oléron is arrived at by a toll-free bridge from Bourcfranc-le-Chapus on the mainland. There is no cycle lane on the bridge so acquire safety measures. From Paris or Bordeaux, get A10 to Saintes and then generate 45 km to Bourcfranc-le-Chapus. 
  • By drinking water: From La Rochelle, acquire ferries to the island. Remember to visit to get the thorough data.
  • By practice: Area trains operate to Saintes, Rochefort, and La Rochelle, and nearby Surgères hook up with the TGV to Paris (three several hours).