Local beaches and attractions
Your nearest beaches are La Tranche-sur-Mer and La Faute-sur-Mer, both only 30 minutes drive.
La Tranche-sur-Mer -The long stretch of sand blends into La Tranche, a town as well known for windsurfing, frequently hosting European championships in late August, and tulips (annual parade in mid-April; spectacular floral park open in spring and summer) as it is for its seven beaches. Surf-shops and bars give the place a bustling, vaguely Californian feel. Boat services run across to the Ile de Ré, a low-lying island which can be seen lying out to sea, as well as to the Ile d'Aix and to La Rochelle. There is an iPhone and Android App "La Tranche Sur Mer Tour" which lists all of the activities, events, restaurants and weather etc in and around La Tranche. Also worth a look are the beaches either side of La Tranche: La Griere to the South and la Terriere to the North - both around 25 minutes drive from Mimosa. La Griere has concerts and night markets during the summer - see http://lagriereplage-latranchesurmer.fr
La Faute-sur-Mer - In this oyster and mussel -producing town four beaches succeed one another along 8km of sea front on a long sandy spit, the Pointe d'Arçay, that curves elegantly around to shelter Aiguillon Bay. The Plage des Belugas is the province of the sand-yachtsmen. The resort is also regularly awarded a Blue Flag for the quality of its waters. A bridge crosses the river Lay, providing an ideal spot for fishermen and linking La Faute with neighbouring L'Aiguillon. The 140-year-old pine forest that anchors the dunes in place also shelters a "parcours de santé", a trail provided by the forestry commission that gives plenty of opportunity to hop, skip and jump.
Le Tanchet - Beyond the far end of Les Sables beach is another favourite with surfers, as well as with sunbathers. If you're looking for something else to do, there is an excellent zoo just here, near the Casino des Pins. Small, but beautifully laid out among shrub-lined terraces and with plenty of shade, it is ideal for children. You can buy bags of food to give to goats and some of the greedier animals (though watch you don't get your fingers nipped). Small monkeys swing freely through the trees, before staging lightning raids on the zoo's litter-bins for picnic left-overs. If you're here on a wild day, don't miss the dramatic wave spouts thrown up at the Puits d'Enfer ("Hell's Well") in the cliffs along here.
Bourgenay - At Bourgenay there is no beach, but the rock pools are good and the marina with its waterside cafes and restaurants is a pleasant and interesting place to wander around and perhaps do a spot of fishing from the breakwater. There is also a golf course just behind the port where you can play a round and hire clubs if you have not brought your own. The main attraction though is the beach at Veillon just south of the town.
North of the port at Bourgenay all the way to the Point de Tanchette the coastline is dominated by low rocky cliffs with just the occasional small patch of sandy or shingle beach mainly around the 'Ans de Coyola'. Though not a true beach-lovers paradise it is a very attractive area with great walks, spectacular views and a feeling of being at one with nature. It is an area where you can find peace and tranquillity before the more commercial beaches just a few kilometres to the north.
Veillon - Without doubt one of the most attractive beaches in the Vendée, The Veillon beach in the commune of Talmont Saint Hilaire, has been regularly voted one of the best
places to visit in the Vendee.
The Beach is approximately 1.5 kilometres long and includes a sand dune spit that has formed at the estuary of the river Payre. The dunes are probably the highest in the Vendee and the shelter that this affords has allowed a lagoon to form inside the estuary. This already attractive beach is enhanced by the Point de Payre to the south. This is a nature reserve of pine forest and rugged cliffs with beaches facing Veillon. To the north the low rocky coast makes a pleasing backdrop to this idyllic beach.
The beach facilities include a good beach restaurant. The car park is extensive though it quickly fills up rapidly due to the popularity of this most beautiful beach.
The beach is reached from Bourgenay which has an attractive harbour with cafes, restaurant and bars.
While you are at Veillon why not take a walk over or around the dunes and discover the estuary of the Payre River with the Port de la Guittière. The port is the centre for huîtres (oysters) and these are produced in the river, there are several dégustations (tastings) where you can sample and purchase these tasty treats as well as purchase other local produce of the sea, refreshments and postcards etc.
L'Aiguillon - on the east side of the River Lay is at the very bottom of the Vendée, and has attracted beach lovers for more than a century.
The Beaches in the town of l’Aiguillon-sur-Mer are based around 2 man-made lakes and although not natural, they are extremely high quality, making a very safe environment for children to swim and parents to relax. There is a wide expanse of sands with a safe shallow children’s swimming area which is clearly marked out. Because it is a man-made environment, and with typical Gallic style, the beach has been developed with families in mind. It has all the facilities to hand such as toilettes, cafés, restaurants and a children’s play area. The lakes provide all manner of water sports, and there is ample parking.
Cayola Bay - The coast becomes pretty rocky along here, broken only by a few small stretches of sand - of which Cayola is the largest. To the north of the main D949 linking Les Sables and Talmont is an interesting motor museum, the Musée de l'Automobile.
Les Sables d'Olonne - Spend lazy, leisurely days on golden dune backed beaches and enjoy local grilled sardines in seafront restaurants. The central market hall (open seven mornings a week in summer; closed Mondays out of season), next to the church, is a paradise for foodies. Try sailing, surfing or sand yachting here too! Park in La Chaume and take the water taxi across the estuary to Les Sable.
Some places of interest and attractions -
The O'Gliss Water Park is new for 2016 and situated just under 20 minutes drive from Maison Mimosa.
"Only a few minutes from the Vendée beaches, O'GLISS PARK is a water park located in the heart of an oasis of relaxation. Ideal for "hangin' out" during a day, you will discover worlds and environments that will give you all what you are looking for...
Sensations, tranquility, relaxation, family time..."
The Times - May 2017:
This fun filled city is a playground whatever your age. First head to Ile de Nantes, an island on the River Loire where a 12 metre high robotic elephant roams and a 3 storey carousel takes you into an undersea world of steampunk creatures. The city has a host of other street art installations and enchanting attractions, linked by a green line painted on the pavements. Highlights include the Chateau des ducs de Bretange and Le Nid, an off beat bar designed by cartoonist Jean Jullien at the top of the cities tallest tower.
Grand Parc of the Puy du Fou -Get ready for a journey through time! Escape to the Grand Parc of the Puy du Fou, for an unforgettable holiday with family or friends !
At the heart of the fantastic forest of Puy du Fou, a vast wooded land of 40 hectares, treat yourself to a deep intake of fresh, natural air – and let yourself be carried away in a whirlwind of shows and entertainment that will take your breath away. Each village represents a different era. Immerse yourself in the ambience of long-gone centuries, dive into the heart of the action and excitement of legendary heroes: Relive the games of the Roman circus, the Viking attacks, the jousting tournaments, the musketeer combats, an absolutely amazing and massive bird display, the skills of our craftsmen and the street theatre… You will relive 2,000 years of the History of France. You will never have been left with so many memories from a single experience.
A 10-20% discount is available on ticket prices if booked online in advance.
Futuroscope - Take a visit to one of France's most popular amusement parks and the only one of its kind in Europe!
Absorb the fantastic, fun and fairy-tale Futuroscope atmosphere with over 25 original experiences waiting for you in their stunning attraction theatres, as heart thumping adventures, outrageous thrills, mind-blowing journeys, the fairy-tale evening show and fantastic attractions deliver delights to suit all tastes and ages!
Le Chateau des Aventuriers - In the lovely setting of le Chateau de la Guignardiere this purpose built tourist attraction (with an original chateau) offers a pleasant day out for the younger families with four different discovery trails including one specifically designed for 3-7 year olds. Ideal for younger families.
La Rochelle -La Rochelle is certainly among the most attractive port towns of France, and is a very pleasant place to visit and to pass a few days. The focus of the town is the old harbour, a lovely part of the town - very picturesque with its two monumental towers (St Nicolas Tower and the Tower of the Chain) either side of the port entrance, through which you can watch the boats enter. A third tower, the 'Tower of the Lantern' is connected to the Chain Tower by a section of the ramparts that originally defended the town. The old town, just behind the harbour, is extensive and also very well preserved / restored, dating mostly from the 17th and 18th centuries. The main shopping streets especially have many fine buildings, but you will also need to explore the side streets in this part of the town. The harbour region is well supplied with fish restaurants, and before dinner the walls of the old town are a popular and pleasant place for an evening promenade, as is the harbour front. The harbour is very active, with boats, numerous buskers, market stalls selling a wide range of products (mostly 'arty') and a general lively atmosphere. Across the harbour from La Rochelle old town is the popular aquarium. The aquarium should not be missed during your visit to la Rochelle. The town also has some attractive gardens to explore and a sprinkling of museums, including the Natural History Museum. There are iPhone and Android apps giving information on activities, events and restaurants in and around La Rochelle. Look for La Rochelle Tour in your app store.