More than 90 miles of award winning sandy beaches, sea warmed by the Gulf Stream, picturesque accessible islands, charming resorts and great cycling routes make up The Vendee. If this sounds good take a look at our lovely selection of villas in Vendee.
The Vendee is located on the Atlantic Coast in the Pays-de-la-Loire region of west central France and takes its name from the Vendee river. La Roche-sur-Yon is the regional capital. In 1804 Napoleon rebuilt the town and introduced a street layout that was regular and straight, quite unusual for France.
The coastline, which reaches more than 200 kilometres along the northern end of the Bay of Biscay, consists mostly of sandy beaches, many of which have been awarded blue flags for cleanliness. Les Sables d''Olonne, Saint Jean de-Monts and La Tranche-sur-Mer are among the popular resorts.
Les Sables d’Olonne was made popular by the aristocratic visitors that came here in the 19th century for the casinos and thermal baths. It also has a fine sandy beach, promenade and magnificent marina.
Saint Jean de Monts is perfect for families looking for a day out with the children, here there is the Plage des Demoiselles with its extensive sandy beach and the Atlantic Toboggan theme park. Attracting almost 1.5 million visitors a year, Puy du Fou, a historical theme park in the north of the departement, is one of Vendees most popular attractions.
Noirmoutier Island is linked to the mainland at low tide by three miles of cobbled road which is submerged twice a day by the sea, however there’s also a handy bridge if you prefer. It’s well worth visiting with 50 kilometres of beaches. It also has a long and interesting history going back to Roman times.
Inland Maillezais Cathedral is also worth a visit, and Vouvant has been named among France''s most beautiful villages. There are numerous other pretty churches, castles and villages in the departement.
Pine forests line many of the beaches, and these, together with the marked footpaths are ideal for hiking, cycling and other outdoor activities. There is a signposted cycling route along the coastal marshes and mudflats, where birdwatching is popular. Marais Potievin is an inland marshland famous for wildlife. Bocage''s rolling countryside, and the forests around Mervent village, provides further leisure opportunities for nature lovers. Fishing is popular on the lakes and rivers of the Vendee.
There are a number of small vineyards in the area; so why not try the Vendee''s most famous dish, Jambon-mogettes (ham with white beans) with a glass of local wine?
For accommodation see our collection of cottages in Vendee, and sample for yourself everything that Vendee has to offer.