Not-to-be-missed tours in the Atlantic Loire Valley
On the Atlantic coast
North of the Loire estuary, the most famous seaside resort in the Pays de la Loire region is renowned for its grand hotels and thalassotherapy centres. Stretching out over 9km of perfectly rounded fine sandy beach, La Baule is also part of the very select [Most Beautiful Bays in the World] Club (https://www.france.fr/fr/actualite/liste/plus-belles-baies-france). Behind its seafront, Art Deco and Belle Epoque villas offer a delightful journey back in time, under century-old pine trees. La Baule is the gateway to the Brière Regional Nature Park and the Guérande salt marshes, just 3 hours from Paris by TGV.
Le Croisic and its ocearium
Just a stone's throw from La Baule and Guérande, on a peninsula offering spectacular views of the Atlantic Ocean and the Côte Sauvage, Le Croisic is a small fishing port turned seaside resort. Popular for its beaches - Saint-Goustan, Port-Lin and Castouillet - and its water sports, Le Croisic is also famous for its starfish-shaped Océarium, home to the wonders of the seabed. Fun and educational, it's an ideal family visit.
Saint-Nazaire and Escal'Atlantic
The birthplace of the prestigious Atlantic shipyards, Saint-Nazaire is a port town with a wide open outlook over the Loire Estuary. There are many seaside resorts along the coastal path, such as Monsieur Hulot's beach at Saint-Marc-sur-Mer, a reference to Jacques Tati's film. In Saint-Nazaire, you can also visit Escal'Atlantic, a unique attraction in Europe, set up in the former submarine base and dedicated to ocean liners. Multimedia displays, archive films and over 200 collector's items plunge visitors into the adventure of the great transatlantic crossings. Even if you stay on the quayside, you'll feel like you're there!
Pornic and the Côte de Jade (Jade Coast)
From Saint-Brévin-les-Pins to Moutiers en Retz, via Pornic, the Côte de Jade is a collection of golden beaches and coves. As you follow the customs path, you'll come across cute little harbours, beautiful family houses and some very photogenic fisheries on stilts. With its perched castle, the castle of Gilles de Rais alias Barbe Bleue, dominating its marina, Pornic combines the charms of a medieval town with those of a lively family seaside resort all year round.
Noirmoutier and Île d'Yeu, pearls of the Vendée
Off the coast of the Vendée, Yeu Island and Noirmoutier Island are two of the natural gems of the Pays de la Loire region. Wild landscapes, gourmet escapades, observation of the local flora and fauna, visits to workshops and art galleries, meetings with salt producers... Preserved natural areas and exceptional know-how are best discovered by bike or on foot. Escape guaranteed!