Let’s talk about holidays – the last ones were long ago and the daily grind of everyday life with the shorter days of winter weigh heavy on your morale. So – lets be positive – the sunny weather will soon be here again with the promise of holidays. You’re wondering where to go this time? Come with us now – we’ll talk to you about the Vendee!
Perhaps you’ve already thought about it? Perhaps you’ve come here every summer for many years? Perhaps you’ve never set foot on French soil? Whatever your circumstances, follow our guide as we’ve got lots for you to discover.
Imagine yourself boarding the ferry in your car or on board a Eurostar train. Make the most of your ferry crossing, during the day or night, or have breakfast on board the train. Perhaps you are in a restaurant with panoramic view over the sea. Whichever you choose, you can dream about the destination that you will discover in just a few hours. Close your eyes – you’re already on holiday!
Whatever mode of transport you prefer, the Vendee is accessible to you:
- From all the major ferry ports in Normandy and Brittany, such as Cherbourg or Roscoff, you should allow approximately 4 hours 30 minutes travel by car.
- Travel by ferry or EuroTunnel with your car to Calais, then allow approximately 6 hours 30 minutes travel time.
- Travel by Eurostar to Paris from where you can take a connection to Challans (approx. 4 hours 30 mins) and then 20 minutes by hire car or taxi to Pays de Saint Jean de Monts
- For those who prefer to travel by air, Nantes airport is approximately 1 hour’s drive away from Pays de Saint Jean de Monts
Focus on the Vendée
British visitors are more familiar with Brittany – their neighbour across the Channel – but our region, a little to the south called the Vendee, is often less known. Situated on the Atlantic coast, you will find huge sandy beaches, the vibrant marshes and a luxurious pine forest.
All this nature allows time to think but also lots of outdoor activities. Sand yachting, catamaran sailing, cycle tours, horse-riding or jogging, a day of tree-top adventure or a round of golf…
There are so many opportunities for happy times spent with family or friends – the only question is whether your stay will be long enough to fit everything in!
The Pays de Saint Jean de Monts is situated in the North West Vendee whose main feature is the ocean. Its 19km of fine sandy beaches are a joy each year to young and old alike. Whether you swim, build sandcastles, try watersports or just relax on the beach, everyone finds their way to contentment. In front of you is the horizon with glimpses of Ile d’Yeu and Noirmoutier.
The Vendée – Land of tradition
A rich history
The local inhabitants of the Vendee (Les Vendéens), whether they are born here or have made the choice to move here, love their region. They are true ambassadors and have an overwhelming wish (once they’ve got over their fear of speaking to you in English) to pass on their love of the area.
The richness of the Pays de Saint Jean de Monts lies for the most part in its natural environment: the ocean, the beaches, the dunes, the forest and the marshes. Cultural sites such as Biotopia, Kulmino and Le Daviaud unveil the secrets of this natural area and tell you about its history. These centres will help you understand the local culture and way of life of its inhabitants.
Everything is here – prefou, melting mogettes, fish caught at sea, oysters cultivated with years of patience and salt, created and gathered in the sunshine. The local markets, with their cheerful hubbub and welcoming atmosphere, take place each morning until 12.30pm. Come and discover the broad range of tastes and flavours of the region.
At tea-time, why not swap your tea and scones for a generous slice of brioche or a cornet of hot chichis – this is snack time ‘Made in Vendee’
At the pub, or rather the café as we know it here, we invite you to try some of the many locally produced craft beers or maybe the local aperitif called Troussepinette. The wines produced in the south of the Vendee are a perfect accompaniment to your meals as well as the many types of local cows and goats’ cheeses which we know you love.
The restaurants will tempt you with good local produce – but something to note is that mealtimes are a bit different in France so make sure you check when making your table reservation.
The best way to simple pleasures
Simplicity and friendliness are an integral part of local daily life and they are values that are very important to those who live here.
Our seaside destination has welcomed holiday makers for more than 80 years. Some people have been coming back year after year for decades having found here a true corner of paradise.
How to find the best accommodation
Having tempted you to visit and plan your next holidays in the Vendee, you are now wondering about your accommodation. Is it better to book a campsite, a bed + breakfast, a holiday let or a hotel?
You will find below a list of establishments that are registered under the ‘Welcome C’est Beau Ici’ quality mark which guarantees the best possible welcome for foreign visitors. You will be welcomed in your own language with the booking contracts and welcome booklets, notes and additional services all translated for you. Just another reason why you should make the Pays de Saint Jean de Monts your future holiday destination.
And last, but not least – here’s a final piece of advice for your journey: make sure you remember to pack a plug adapter so that you don’t get cut off!
See you soon in the Vendée!