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Visit outstanding cultural attractions or take a hike amongst the peaks? A romantic tour of the wine route or a family cruise? What will this year's
French holiday bring?

La Mer XXL in Nantes

Every facet of the sea and all its states will be showcased in Nantes between 29 June and 10 July next year with a completely new kind of large-format event that its organisers bill as the first-ever universal exhibition dedicated entirely to the maritime world.

It fascinates us as much as it frightens us, and inspires and impresses us in equal measure... Covering more than 70% of the Earth’s surface, the sea still has many secrets we have yet to learn. Nevertheless, we will have the opportunity to fathom some of its mysteries at La Mer XXL, the first-ever universal exhibition dedicated entirely to the maritime world.

The 7 central themes include "The sea that makes us dream".

“Spirited, spectacular and instructive”, this event is on a scale like no other before it, and will occupy the entire 65,000 m² of the Nantes exhibition centre over its 12 days. Although the final programme is still being worked on, we already know that it will be structured around seven central themes adopted by a committee of experts: The sea as energy source, The sea that makes us happy, The sea that feeds us, The sea that makes us dream, The sea that cares for us, The sea that gives us a living, and The sea we must protect. Through these seven themes, the exhibition will showcase every facet of the sea with activities presented by those involved in the maritime world.

Nantes, birthplace of Jules Verne

And it’s no accident that it was from Nantes that the original idea for this event emerged. In addition to its proximity to the ocean, the city is also the birthplace of French writer Jules Verne, the author of Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea. Nantes is also celebrating his memory with Les Machines de l’Ile, an art project inspired by the invented worlds of the author, and whose Carrousel des Mondes Marins will form part of the exhibition.

mer xxl