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Discover : Oléron island

A culture, an island ...

places to see

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On the same island, observe a remarkable architectural heritage, a wild nature, charming villages, sandy beaches, a fishing port, ...

Lighthouse Chassiron

Chassiron at the northern tip of the island of Oleron, facing the ocean regulates shipping traffic near the coast of the island of Oleron. It became important in the seventeenth century when it was necessary to increase the safety of the sluice. Its tower, 46 m high, can be seen up to 35 km by day and its light at 52 km per night.

A beautiful staircase of 224 steps leads to the lantern, lit by the acetylene incandescent light. First painted in white, it was added in 1926 the 3 black strips of a height of 6 meters that characterize it today, to make it more visible day in the mist and to differentiate it from its neighbor of the island de Ré, the lighthouse of the Whales.

The Chassiron site was completely rehabilitated in 2007. The gardens have been refurbished and a museum has been created on the first floor of the lighthouse.

Timetable :

From April 1st to June 30th: 10h to 12h15 – 14h to 19h
From July 1st to August 31st: 10am to 8pm
From 1st to 30th September: 10h to 12h15 – 14h to 19h
From October 1st to March 31st: 10h to 12h15 – 14h to 17h

Prices :
    • Visit of the lighthouse: Adult: 3,00 € – Child: 1,50 €
    • Visit of the museum – show route: Adult: € 5.00 – Child: € 2.50
      (limited in number of people with staggered hours)
    • For adult groups or children, consult the lighthouse reception.
Contact informations :

+33 5 46 75 18 62

17650 Saint-Denis-d’Oléron
2HWQ+MV Saint-Denis-d’Oléron

Birds Swamp

Discover the Oléronaise fauna. The Marais aux Oiseaux, located in a sensitive natural area of some 130 ha, is home to an educational discovery park and a rescue center to help birds in distress.

The park offers tours along a 1.5 km trail, accessible to all, with information on the life of the species encountered.
At the beginning of the journey, a mini-farm allows children to meet some mammals and birds. Further on, several species of the region can be observed in their natural environment from a 9 m high observatory that offers a panoramic view of the site.

Among the animals that can be seen in the park, many people live there freely, attracted by both the tranquility of the place, the sight of congeners, abundant food and the presence of fresh water.

Timetable :

July and August: every day from 10h to 19h
April, May, June and September: daily, 10 am to 1 pm – 2 pm to 6 pm (except Saturday morning and Sunday morning)
October 1st – November 14th / February 16th – March 31st: During school holidays, every day (except Saturdays, New Year’s and Christmas holidays): from 2pm to 6pm.
Outside school holidays on Wednesday and Sunday 14h to 18h.
Annual closing from November 15th to February 15th.

Prices :
  • Individual rates: Adult: € 4.50 / Child (6 to 14 years old): € 2.80
  • Group rates (at least 20 people): Adult: € 3.70 (1 free companion for 20 adults)
    Groups of at least 20 people can, by appointment only, visit the park outside the opening period
  • Guided tour of the park on reservation (2 h): Adult: 6,00 € / Child: 3,20 €
  • Group rate for students and the unemployed (on presentation of a voucher) as well as for the holders of the CEZAM card or the Saintonge Trésors card
Contact information :

+33 5 46 75 37 54

17550 Dolus-d’Oléron
WPHG+36 Saint-Pierre-d’Oléron

Additionals infos :

– Closing of the ticket office 1 hour before the closing of the site.
– Dogs are not allowed even on a leash.

Fort Boyard and Fort Louvois

The Fort Boyard, also called the “Stone Vessel” is anchored forever on the Longe de Boyard (a long sandbank) between the islands of Aix and Oléron.

Although it now serves as a set for the show bearing his name, the Fort project began in 1666 and was built in 1803 to protect the harbor before becoming a prison and then abandoned. It was in 1988 that Jacques Antoine bought Fort Boyard for 1.5 million Francs and resold 1 symbolic Franc to the General Council of Charente-Maritime which rehabilitates it, thus making it possible to shoot every summer the TV shows that you know.

The show does not allow the inner visit of Fort Boyard, instead, you can visit Fort Louvois. Built only a few years after Fort Boyard, Fort Louvois is a listed building and restored as a museum.

Fort Boyard :

Many boats leave every day to go around the Fort. Contact these service providers to find out their respective rates.
Schedules vary according to the seasons and the tide.

Fort Louvois timetable :

Depending on the tides.

Fort Louvois prices :
  • Individuals: Adult: 7 € / Child (6 – 16 years): 4 € / Family Pass (2 adults + 2 children): 20 € / Intrigue at Fort Louvois: 9 €
  • Group of more than 15 people: Adult: 5.50 € / Intrigue to the Fort: 7.50 €
  • Group of more than 25 people: Adult: 5 €
Fort Louvois contact informations :

+33 5 46 85 23 22

65 bis avenue Jean Jaurès
17560 Bourcefranc-le-Chapus

Additionals infos :

– Access at high tide is done with a shuttle that runs every 15 minutes.

Maxime Pinard Vineyard

It is an area rich in discoveries. Soothing for the soul, comforting for the body, it evokes fullness. Winemakers from father to son for 4 generations, the Maxime Pinard Group is discovering its domain to families, lovers, groups … Here, time slows to the rhythm of languid ocean to better reveal its secrets.

At the heart of this postcard of more than 100 hectares of vines and appellation of origin controlled you will travel in this country Oléronais for the delight of young and old. This is the secret of this family which, since 1889, uses its know-how to serve the different terroirs of the island of Oléron, whose charm and voluptuousness are found in the delicate and delicate aromas of its wine vintages, Pineau, cognac, …

An unforgettable experience of the art of living on the island awaits you for a trip to the end of the world.

Port of La Cotinière

The Port of La Cotinière is the 5th largest fishing port in France. Yet it is also one of the most typical sites of the island of Oléron. Facing the sea, the port welcomes the boats of the fishermen, entering and leaving at the rate of the tides and unloading the famous species which are fished (soles, langoustines, knives, bars, lobsters …).

The seafront is enlivened by the many bars and shops that encourage you to stroll or land on the ocean. Many night markets brighten the summer evenings.

The pretty chapel of La Cotinière pays particular tribute to the peris at sea which are part of the history of the place. As for La Criée, it is no longer in free access but guided tours are offered to discover this colorful place.

Program :

Guided tour of La Cotinière fish auction “From boat to plate”
Access the unloading platform and discover the port activity as well as the auction of the fishing port of La Cotinière with a guide from the tourist office.

Timetable :

15:00 Monday to Friday (except public holidays).

Prices :
  • € 3.00 per adult
  • € 1.50 from 6 to 16 years old
  • Free for -6 years old
Contact informations :

+33 5 46 85 65 23

Quai René Delouteau, 17310 Saint-Pierre-d’Oléron
WM7C+W3 Saint-Pierre-d’Oléron

Additionals infos :

– Visits are by reservation : +33 5 46 85 65 23

La Brée les Bains

Brée-les-Bains has all the attractions of a small seaside resort: sandy beach, century-old cypresses, water sports areas, mooring park for small pleasure boats, authentic market, atypical lanes, summer discotheque. ..

At low tide, La Brée-les-Bains offers fishermen a fabulous rocky plateau where clams, periwinkles and crabs rub shoulders. This town has retained its charms and turn into a haven of peace between salt marshes and colorful alleyways.

At the entrance of the village, the mill of La Fontaine is one of the best preserved of the island of Oléron.

Market hours :

From 01 May to 15 June & 16 September to 30 October: every morning except Mondays
From June 16 to September 15 and for school holidays: every morning
From 01 October to 30 April: Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays

Nightclub timetable :

Every evening from mid-April to mid-September

Nightclub contact information :

+33 5 46 76 56 37

Port du Douhet
17840 La Brée Les Bains

Contact details of the tourist office :

+33 5 46 47 96 73

17840 La Brée-les-Bains
20 rue des Ardillères

To discover the cuisine oléronaise, nothing better than to stop the time of a meal at restaurant La Chaudrée. Between two bucolic lanes, two steps from the beaches and the heart of La Brée les Bains, you can discover typical dishes cooked with passion.

And to bring back a souvenir, the cellar Maxime Pinard proposes its wine products (wine, pineau, cognac, …) as well as 100% local products (salt, biscuits, honey, …).

Baudissière and Fort Royer

At the edge of the channel of Baudissière, along the road of Oysters, walk between colorful traditional cabins and picturesque.

In the oyster-farming villages, oyster producers’ huts were once painted with remains of paintings that had been used for the boats. Here, some huts serve local oyster farming, others shelter artists or creators who practice their craft and open their doors to visitors.

Not far from there, the Fort Royer site offers a perfect vision on oyster farming. The channels and crests were created by wrist strength in the 1920s in a natural area of a mudflat trapped by a dune cord. A hard work that has given this site a unique charm to discover with family.

Program of Fort Royer :

Guided tours on oyster farming
A nice guided walk in the heart of this small greenery managed by 7 oyster farmers, tells the oyster, this curious animal and its funny history. On the field of work of a professional, you will discover oyster farming: random birth at sea, breeding in oyster beds, work of the women of hut, traditional refining in the clear … Visit the huts, an establishment of active expedition and presentation of an oyster film dating from 1907.
Small games on oyster farming are distributed to the children during the visit.

Timetable :

For groups: all year in French – Thursdays at 10:30 from April to September in English
For individuals:
– February, March: 15h Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday
– April, May, June: 17h from Monday to Saturday
– July and August: 10h, 15h and 17h from Monday to Friday – 10h and 15h Saturday
– September: 17h from Monday to Saturday
– October and early November: 15h Tuesday, Friday and Saturday
– Closed end of November, December and January

Prices :
  • Full price: 5,00 € / reduced price: 4,00 € – oyster farming, coastal plants
  • Full price: 6,00 € – reduced price: 7,00 € – oyster beds, rocky shore
  • Reduced rates: 7 to 16 years old, students, large families, PASS, Guide du Routard …
Contact informations :

+33 5 46 47 06 48

17310 Saint-Pierre-d’Oléron
XQ55+H4 Saint-Pierre-d’Oléron

Additionals infos :

– Reservations required for groups, tours à la carte and tailor-made possible : +33 5 46 47 06 48

And a little further … The Moëze-Oléron Nature Reserve

On the land side, the Moëze-Oléron Nature Reserve stretches over a polder that has an incredible biological richness: water birds, European eel, European otter, amphibian vole, European pond turtle …

Sea side, it is a real pantry for many species to observe. It is located on the large waterbird migration route, known as the East Atlantic. The Reserve participates in the conservation of species and biodiversity in a heritage site and a collective living space (shellfish farmer, breeder, professional fisherman …).

If you respect the markup, it is an authentic and magical stroll that awaits you.

Programs :

The museum space at the Ferme de Plaisance, labeled “Tourism and Handicap”, invites you to discover the protected natural site and many other places or atmosphere according to the calendar of temporary exhibitions.
Opening times and dates 2019
From April 1st to June 30th: every day from 3.30 pm to 5.30 pm (except Saturday)
From July 1st to August 31st: daily from 10am to 12.30pm and from 2.30pm to 6.30pm (including WE and public holidays)
From September 1st to October 31st: every day from 2.30 pm to 5.30 pm (except Saturday)

Observation point :

From a fixed observation point, discover the diversity of species in the reserve, their way of life (food, rest, migration …) and coastal landscapes (formation of the dune and dynamics).
All ages – 1h30 – Fees: free participation
Different meeting places according to dates

Guided discovery :

The guided discoveries of the reserve in Winter Symphony, Spring Concert and Autumn Sonata, the guided tours of the reserve show the biodiversity feathered, scales … wetlands. Landscape, birds, history, a cocktail to take without moderation-3km.
All ages – 3h – 15 people maximum – Rates: adult: 7 € / reduced: 5 €
Ferme des Tannes, GPS coordinates: Lat: 45,8864 – Long: -1,0788

Overview of the nature reserve :

Discovery of a polder carved by the hand of men and adopted by the wilderness in situ, visit completed by the projection of a short film in the room. Output accessible to people with disabilities.
All public – 1h30 – 20 people maximum – Prices: adult: 6 € / reduced: 5 €
Pleasure Farm, GPS coordinates : Lat : 45,8945 – Long :-1,0695

Twilight walk :

Tinta’mares of tree frogs, melody of blackbirds and other passerines, participate in a twilight stroll to see otherwise. According to opportunity, on different paths.
Everyone – 1h30 – 20 people maximum – Single price: 5 €.
Pleasure Farm, GPS coordinates : Lat : 45,8945 – Long :-1,0695

Exploration :

At the reception of the reserve, remove your Kit of the perfect explorer and your logbook and go exploring on the trail Sablières.
Family – 1h00 – At the request, all the year during the opening hours of the nature center – 10 € rental of the Kit
Nature Center at the Ferme de Plaisance (GPS coordinates : Lat : 45,8945 – Long :-1,0695), last departure 1h before closing.

Magic moment :

Each child creates his painting of the sea and discovers through this manual activity the great diversity of species of the reserve.
Children from 2 years – 30 minutes – 6 children maximum – Price: 2 € / session.
Pleasure Farm, GPS coordinates : Lat : 45,8945 – Long :-1,069

Coordinates:

+33 7 68 24 70 23 – +33 5 46 83 17 07

Centre nature de la réserve
Ferme de Plaisance
17 780 Saint-Froult
GPS coordinates : 45,8945 – -1,0695

Additional info :

– Mandatory program registration : +33 5 46 82 12 44

A culture also...

in the plate

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Oysters Marennes Oléron

Oysters

The history of oysters Marennes Oléron begins in Roman times when rich families of the empire made them come at great expense for their banquets. Today, ripening, rearing and packing are allowed in 27 communes, including 8 on the island of Oléron. The oysters are well known for being savored during the festive season with fleur de sel or a zest of lemon but they are also a perpetual challenge for the creativity of the great chefs.

Galette Charentaise

The Galette

Called galette “Goulebenèze”, the slab charentaise differs from its cousins, the Surgères cake or crushed Poitou, a more mellow texture.
Golden and decorated, it sits on the party tables for several centuries.
Little more? It is scented with finely chopped angelica confit, vanilla or lemon extract.

Églade charentaise

The Eglade

A typically Charente dish, this local delicacy is a must throughout the region and is frequently offered at local festivals. Its curious name comes from the patois “éguiade” which means “aiguillade” in relation to the maritime pine needles which is widely spread all over the island. The églade consists of burning mussels using local and natural materials to give them a unique taste.

Pineau des Charentes

The Pineau

Pineau des Charentes is a local product from the vineyards located in the west of France. On the island of Oléron, the production began several centuries ago (in 1589). It is the fruit of the mixture of 60% Cognac of at least 1 year of age and grape must. The Pineau des Charentes ages many months of oak barrels.
The Pineau is used as an aperitif, fresh and without ice. Some people like it with a piece of Roquefort, others for the preparation of oysters.

Flower of salt

The Salt

White gold is formed in the salt marshes of Sauzelles, historic salt village. In an area of exceptional fauna and flora, the fleur-de-sel is harvested by hand and by craftsmanship with millenary know-how, respectful of man and the environment.
The cleaning of the salt ends in April and the flower of salt begins to harvest in June, then it is dried to finish on the plates and to raise all your dishes with finesse.

Fish & shellfish

The Pisces

Langoustines, shrimps, knives, sole, lobsters, bars and other noble species are freshly landed from the fishing boats of the Port of La Cotinière twice a day. Fresh products to find on the market stalls, in the fishmongers and directly on your plate at the restaurant La Chaudrée.

Need to stay sleeping?

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The hands in the pockets

2 hotels on the island of Oléron a few steps from the beaches and ideally located to visit the island

Like at home

A family cottage in the heart of the island and a vineyard, a few minutes from La Brée les Bains, beaches, lighthouse, ...

On the road of holidays

A parking area open to motorhomes, with the welcome of an oléronais winemaker

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