What to see and do from les Charmettes

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What to see and do from Les Charmettes
en Charente Maritime

Beaches nearby

Atlantic Coast beaches near Les Charmettes

It’s all about big, sandy beaches on this amazing stretch of the west coast of France and you are certainly spoiled for choice.

Families love to head to the resort of La Palmyre with its sheltered beaches and coves, where little ones can swim safely in the calm bay. Further around the coast, the Côte Sauvage is the surfers’ spot where you can work up an appetite catching the crashing waves. A stroll along St Palais is perfect in the evening sun for a relaxing meal overlooking the sea, rocks and ‘King of Lights’, the Lighthouse of Cordouan.

Distance to beaches:

  • La Palmyre (1 mile / 1.5 km)
  • Côte Sauvage (3 miles / 5km)
  • Ronce-les-Bains (8 miles / 12km)
  • St. Palais (6 miles / 10km)
  • Royan (10 miles / 16km)
  • L’ile d’Oléron (20 miles / 32km)
  • La Rochelle (46 miles / 74 km)

Activites and places not to miss

La Palmyre Zoo

Don’t miss the fantastic zoo at La Palmyre with its 1,600 furry, feathered and scaly creatures. It’s a great day out for all the family and your kids will be enchanted by the animals - the elephants and giraffes in particular! 

The zoo runs breeding programmes for endangered species but something makes us suspect that your children are going to be more interested in the parrot and sealion shows, the baby monkeys and zebras, and the extrovert meercats who love to play up to an audience.

  • Luna Park

    This funfair offers tons of thrills and excitement for children and big kids alike, just 1 mile / 1.5km away from Bonne Anse. Dare to bear the drop tower, get carried away on the carousels or defy gravity on the pendulum rides. For those unable to stomach all that, why not admire the fireworks, play games at the stalls or get in to win prizes for the tombola. An evening sure to entertain everyone.

  • Futuroscope 128 miles away

    On route or on your way back home, why not visit Futuroscope, one of France’s largest and most popular theme parks. One day here and you’ll start finding the present old fashioned – you can go on an adventure to the animated world in one of the many Imax cinemas, have a drink on top of the world in the Aerobar, or even go dancing with giant robots!
    The light and water show in the evening is sure to amaze the whole family, and you can even stay the night in one of the futuristic hotels.

  • Royan & Violon sur le Sable Concert

    The seaside town of Royan is the capital of the Côte de Beauté (Beautiful Coast) region around the vast Gironde Estuary. As well as its bustling marina and fishing port, Royan is the setting for the Violon sur le Sable classical music festival, held each year in late July when the beach becomes a free open-air concert hall. Visitors can enjoy a picnic as well as the wonderful music and in the evening there are firework displays. 

  • La Rochelle

    The capital of Charente-Maritime, La Rochelle, is world-famous - and with good reason. As the protestant stronghold in catholic France during the fifteen hundreds, it is brimming over with historical facts and treasures waiting to be discovered, it was even a base for the Knights Templar! There’s lots on offer for little ones (and not so little ones), including one of the largest aquariums in France, the maritime museum, and the world war two bunker.
    Go and explore the old port and town where you’ll find many wonderful restaurants, markets and shops, offering all sorts local delicacies. And don’t forget to visit one of the three medieval towers guarding the entrance to the harbour, you never know what treasures are hidden there!


  • Cognac

    If you're after a day out to keep dad happy then this will work a treat. The town gives its name to one of the world’s most well-known types of brandy. Spend the day exploring the town’s medieval district ‘Vieux Cognac’, and take in the unusual architecture and narrow cobbled streets. Make sure you fit in a visit to one of the Cognac making houses and sample the iconic brand. The Martell house keeps its visitors well occupied, with sound and light shows as well as taste testings.

  • Island Hopping

    You can also go island-hopping. A three-kilometre bridge connects the city of La Rochelle to the chic Île de Ré, where the whole family can cycle up an appetite before visiting one of its fine restaurants. Or challenge everybody, old and young, to a surfing contest on the Ile d’Oléron, before exploring its ruined windmills and sand dunes. Then jump on a boat to get a closer look at the nearby 19th-century fortification Fort Boyard. 

  • Charente Maritime Lighthouses

    The Cordouan Lighthouse is otherwise known as the King of Lighthouses, and remains a fantastic sight for visitors as one of the oldest French lighthouses in use, and one of the only lighthouses with a live-in keeper. What sets this lighthouse apart from the others is its Notre Dame de Cordouan chapel, and is set in the middle of the sea 4 miles/6km away from the coast. The Chassiron Lighthouse is perched on top of a rocky cliff on the west coast of the Ile d’Oléron, and is remarkable in that it has a light that can be seen 32 miles/50 km away! What we love about this lighthouse are its award winning sculpted gardens too. 

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