Footpath from the dunes to the marshes

Follow the dune footpath, stroll through the forest and wander along the lanes crisscrossing the marshes

  • Starting point: Parking at "La Plage du Pont d'Yeu" in Notre Dame de Monts
  • Length: 5 km
  • Duration: 1:15
  • Level: Easy

Accessible all year round – Ideal at low tide

  1. Departure from the parking «La Plage du Pont d’Yeu». Facing the ocean, head towards the left side of the parking. Pass the wooden fence and take the path along the dunes.
  2. After 150m, if you wish to see «Le Pont d’Yeu», climb the wooden steps to the right of the path, which gives access to the beach where you can enjoy the view (at low tide). Return down the same steps and turn right onto the path.
  3. At the intersection, continue straight on. At the next crossing, go straight on.
  4. At the next junction, marked by the end of the fence and the cypress trees, continue on the path opposite you.
  5. When the path branches out, continue on the broadest path, which goes slightly to the right and continue down to the cycle track. Take this track to the left, towards the forest. At the end, pass the wooden barriers and turn right along the road.
  6. After 300m, at the stop, turn left, then immediately right.
  7. At the next stop, carefully cross the D38 onto the stony path «chemin de la maison rouge».
  8. At the end of the road, at the junction turn left and left again onto the «route de la Menardière» road. Continue straight on for 1 km, up to the roundabout. Along the road you will pass a longère (barn/dwelling).
  9. Cross the roundabout and take the road «Rue du Pont d’Yeu», which is opposite, slightly right. Follow this road to reach the departure point.

Le Pont d’Yeu

At low tide, the water retreats slowly, and Le Pont d’Yeu is gradually unveiled… This is the moment when fans of beach and rockpool fishing can
walk out over the rocky sea bed armed with their hooks, forks and nets, hoping for the catch of the day! The promentary extends for 2 km, or even more if the
conditions are right. Then, the sea comes in and covers it all over again, until the next tide… Legend has it that, around the fourth century, Saint Martin standing on the Monts coast and facing the «Ile d’Yeu», asked God how he could get over to the island to preach the gospel. Satan offered to build St Martin a road
but on the condition that Satan was able to take the soul of the first Christian to cross. Saint Martin accepted, provided that the road was finished
before the cockerel’s crow. Satan and all his demons set to work but in order to delay the cockerel’s crow, they gave it wine to drink. However, the
wine had the opposite effect and the cockerel started to crow during the night. The demons were overcome with panic and fled, leaving the road

Marshland architecture

«Bourrine» (marshland workers cottage), the traditional habitat of the Marais Breton Vendéen. Its walls are made up of a mixture of earth, sand,
water and straw. The roof is thatched with reeds. The path will then lead you onto «The Patis» which is a «longère» (barn/house) a typical 18th century house
often seen in western France. Farm workers and craftsmen lived in this type of house, often sharing it with their livestock.


Has Aeolus, the keeper of the winds blown sand into your eyes ?
You are not alone, it’s the same thing for the low growing plants at your feet! These small plants have adapted by using a range of different techniques
to resist sea spray and wind blown sand, not to mention the heat of the summer: some, for example, have very deep root systems , allowing them to reach water.
Others roll up their leaves to avoid losing moisture during times of drought. It is a fragile but truly fascinating environment…

Thanks to this footpath, you will discover the beauty of the area! 🌲🌲 Tiphaine


This walk is available for sale at 1€ in our Tourist Offices. You can also download it for free writing your email address.

Download footpath from the dunes to the marshes