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Tourist attractions French Atlantic Coast

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  • 1 Puy du Fou Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Industrial tourism and theme park

    Parc du Puy-du-Fou F - 85500 Les Herbiers

    A more effective trip back in time than any epic movie, the enchanting, beautiful estate of Puy de Fou (composed of 50ha of woodland) is the backdrop for historical shows featuring incredible special effects. Covering the years 1000 to 1900, several ..

  • 2 Château d'Antoine Abbadie Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Architecture, castles and historic districts

    Route de la Corniche F - 64700 Hendaye

    The explorer and astronomer Antoine Abbadie (1810-1897) commissioned Viollet-le-Duc to build him a castle that would suit his taste for the Middle Ages and science. This amazing Neo-Gothic building, boasting crenelated towers and pepperpot roofs, is ..

  • 3 Old Port Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Architecture, castles and historic districts

    cours des Dames F - 17000 La Rochelle

    Situated at the end of a narrow bay, the old port is made up of the port entry, the beaching basin or Old Port, the small basin where yachts are moored, and the trawler basin. It is certainly the most well-known view of La Rochelle with its two tower..

  • 4 Zoo de La Palmyre Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Industrial tourism and theme park

    6 avenue de Royan F - 17570 La Palmyre

    This 33-acre zoo is set in the magnificent forests and dunes of La Palmyre. A marked trail, dotted with lakes and ponds, takes visitors past some 1 600 animals from every corner of the globe. Carnivores live next to small pandas and suricates. Parrot..

  • 5 Basque and Bayonne History Museum Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Museums and art

    37 quai des Corsaires F - 64100 Bayonne

    The museum (Musee basque et de l'histoire de Bayonne) is located in the Maison Dagourette, a 17C townhouse which is also a historic monument. The up-to-the-minute displays highlight its rich ethnographic collections devoted to Basque culture and life..

  • 6 La Rhune Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    F - 64310 Ascain

    La Rhune (in Basque larrun means good pasture land) is regarded as the symbol of the French Basque country. From the summit (900m) of the frontier-mountain there is a superb panorama over the ocean, the Landes Forest, the Basque Pyrenees and, southwa..

  • 7 Cinescenie Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Industrial tourism and theme park

    F - 85590 Les Épesses

    The rear terrace of the Château du Puy du Fou overlooks a huge lake and 23 hectares which are the stage for the grandiose Cinéscénie sound-and-light show. The epic spectacle, with music by Nick Glennie Smith, is run and performed by an organisation t..

  • 8 Futuroscope Park Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Industrial tourism and theme park

    A 10 F - 86000 Poitiers

    In the Futuroscope you can fly, fall and even leave the solar system without getting out of your chair, thanks to the digital technology that takes you into the fourth dimension where science and simulations come together to give you a taste of the f..

  • 9 Abbaye de Saint-Savin Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Religious buildings

    Place de la Libération F - 86310 Saint-Savin

    Founded in the 9C and pillaged by the Normans in 878, this abbey was rebuilt in the 11C in record time. Although the conventual buildings are more recent (17C), the rest of the abbey is original. A handsome blend of harmony and sobriety, the abbey ch..

  • 10 Île de Ré Recommended Recommended

    Towns and villages

    The Île de Ré, also known as the "white island", stretches out for over 30km seawards just off the port of La Rochelle. The island has been linked to the mainland by a toll bridge 2 960m long since 1988.

  • 11 Île d'Yeu Recommended Recommended

    Towns and villages

    This isolated stretch of land, 10km long and 4km wide, is the western isle that is furthest from the mainland. Set off the Atlantic coast, it has managed to preserve all the advantages of its insularity - unspoilt countryside and limited motor traffi..

  • 12 Cognac Museum Recommended Recommended

    Museums and art

    Les Remparts - place de la Salle-Verte F - 16100 Cognac

    Partly occupying the Perrin de Boussac residence (1567) on one side and abutting the 17C ramparts on the other, this resolutely contemporary facility houses a remarkable museum dedicated to cognac and its history. 1 200m 2 of exhibits provide a fasci..

  • 13 Underground Church of St Jean Recommended Recommended

    Religious buildings

    Rue St-Jean F - 16390 Aubeterre-sur-Dronne

    Hewn from a single block of rock, this is France's highest monolithic church. Those excavating it in the limestone in the 12C were able to incorporate earlier caves used by the first Christian worshippers. The present church was undoubtedly built to ..

  • 14 La Grande Côte Recommended Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    F - 17200 Royan

    Leave the car at the point where the D25 from Royan ceases to follow the coastline and head into the woods to access a stony platform. The Gironde, Grave Point, Cordouan Lighthouse, Coubre Point and its lighthouse make for an impressive panorama. To ..

  • 15 Church of Saint Pierre d'Aulnay Recommended Recommended

    Religious buildings

    Avenue de l’Église F - 17470 Aulnay

    The Church of St Pierre cuts a solitary figure, rising among the cypresses of its old graveyard. A Unesco World Heritage site, this masterpiece of Poitou Romanesque built of warm-hued stone stands near the village of Aulnay-de-Saintonge. Noteworthy f..

  • 16 Tumulus de Bougon Recommended Recommended

    Archaeological and historical sites

    La Chapelle F - 79800 Bougon

    One of Europe's earliest necropolises, Neolithic people erected these funerary monuments some 2 000 years prior to the building of the pyramids. Running around the five well-preserved Bougon tumuli and the remains of a Cistercian priory, the museum ..

  • 17 Vendée History Museum Recommended Recommended

    Museums and art

    Allée Paul-Bazin F - 85170 Les Lucs-sur-Boulogne

    Perfectly integrated into the landscape under a roof-canopy planted with vegetation, this new museum of 3 100m2 traces the region's history from the Prehistoric period to the present day. Visitors follow a timeline through the eight sections. The med..

  • 18 Ossau Valley Recommended Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    F - 64000 Pau

    The Ossau Valley was once known as Ursialensis vallis, or ''Bear Vallley''. It stretches out for 70km from Pau to Laruns (lower Ossau). The valley is dotted with a multitude of medieval-looking villages, including Bielle, with its 15C and 16C houses,..

  • 19 Aspe Valley Recommended Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    F - 64400 Oloron-Ste-Marie

    The Aspe Valley is accessible from Oloron (N 134) and stretches all the way to the Col de Somport. This rugged mountain valley personifies the harmony of a well-preserved natural environment, thanks to its forests where the few remaining bears are pr..

  • 20 International Cartoon Museum Recommended Recommended

    Museums and art

    121 rue de Bordeaux F - 16000 Angoulême

    The International Cartoon Museum (cibdi) is comprised of two sites on either side of the Charente River, connected by a passageway decorated with a statue of Corto Maltese. One has a library - a true shrine to cartoons - which contains nearly all the..

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