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Towns and Villages of the Vendee


The Vendee has many towns and villages that are worth the visitor exploring, below are the major ones. There are no real cities in the Vendee which sets the overall theme of a quiet rural community with a little more activity along the coast,especially during the summer months.

The Vendee has a population of 559,888 (2004) There are 282 communes.
The land surface is 6720km²
Where we have more details and photos there is a link to a seperate page.
L,Aiguillon-sur Mer. This is the Mussel growing capital of the Vendee, sitting at the mouth of the River Lay this seaside town has a lot to offer. Along with the well kept harbour and its artifical lake and beach, there are the countless pretty fishermen’s’ cottages in the narrow winding streets and for nature lovers the area known as the 'point' is a haven of wild life where....Read More...

This is a small town typical of those found in the South Vendee, being just 7 kilometers from La Tranche sur Mer it enjoys...  Read more...

This village is just north of La Roche sur Yon on the road to Challon

Apremont. This is a picturesque village with a lakeside beach and a ruined castle.

Aubigny. This is a village just 9k south of la Roche sur Yon on the D747.

Avrille. This is just inland from the beautiful beaches of the Vendee on the road (D949) from Lucon to Les Sables d'Olonne. It boasts the Chateau Guignardiere and its Riddle trails and historic trail.

La Barre-de-mont.This village is on the mainland just opposite Noirmoutier on western end of the Marais Breton where it joins the 'Forest Domain des Pays de Mont'. It is joined to the beach resort of Fromentine.

Bazoges-en-pareds.The Donjon or medieval keep dominates this village and the surrounding countryside. It was built during the 100 years war and there is a well preserved pigeon house and medieval gardens which are still used by the chef of the adjacent auberge.  Read More...

Beaulieu-sous-la-Roche. This village is just south of Aizenay and is entirely devoted to art.

Beauvoir, This village is the gateway to the Breton Marshes and the Goie, the causeway leading to the Ile de Noirmoutier.

Benet.This is a town close to the border with the Deux Sevre and bordering the Eastern end of the Pairie and the Northern end of the Green Venice. The town is best known for its 15th century church.

Bouin. This picturesque village situated in the middle of the Marais Breton was once an island. The narrow streets around the church are... Read More...

Le Boupere. The 13th century church which was fortified in the 15th century is worthy of a second look.  Read More...

Brem-sur-Mer. Dolmens and Menhirs can be found all around this former sea port and indicate that a civilisation has been present on this site for more than 5000 years. The 11th century church is one of the oldest in the Vendee. It is one of the Vendees wine growing regions and the wines are dry and crisp.

Challans. This is the largest town in the north of the Vendee and is second only to La Roche sur Yon in size in the entire Vendee. It is a modern town however it has its roots in the history of the Vendee, and holds three weekly markets.

Chaille-les-Marais. At one time this was an island and the capital of the dry marshes; the cliffs are still visiable along part of the N137 and the D25. The 'Maison de Pitit Poitou' just south of the village is a living museum about life on the marches.

Chaize-le-vicomte.This Town has an 11th century fortified church which is the largest Romanesque church in the Vendee. The town offers good shops and restaurants and pleasant walks.  Read More...

Chantonnay.This town is situated where the Praire meets the Bocage, on the crossroads D949 - D137. It has mainly agricultural based industries and just outside of the town is the lake complex at Rochereau.

Cheffois. This village has a fortified church, two good restaurants and large and interesting garden centre which lines the road with topiary trees.

Coex. This is an attractive village noted for its floral decorations and its golf course.

Les Epesses. This village is in the North East corner of the Vendee has been linked with the chateau and Lords of the Puy-du-Fou... Read More..

La Faute-sur-mer
. This village is just across the river Lay from Aiguillon-sur-mer and boast one of best beaches in the Vendee, some good restaurants and one of the largest mussel farms in France.  Read More...

Fontenay le Comte

Steeped in history Fontenay-le-Comte is justifiably known as the prettiest town in the Vendee and one of the prettiest in France being listed in the "Plus Beau detours de France".  Read more.

Foussais-Payre. This is classed as one of the 'Petites Cites de Charactere'. Foussais joined with its neighbour Payre-sur-Vendee in 1968 to form Foussais -Payre but its history dates from Gallo Roman.... Read More....

Fromentine.Lying almost under the bridge to Noirmoutier this seaside resort has a sheltered beach to the north and the Forest of the Pays de Monts wrapped around it to the East, South and West. Ferries to the Ile d'Yeu leave from its pier.

La Garnache.This town is situated in the Bocage and is 6kms from Challans. It is dominated by the ruins of a 13th century feudal castle, and is noted for its goat's cheese 'le Garnachoix'.

Les Herbiers.
Situated in the north east corner of the department les herbiers is well located for discovering the Haut Bocage of the Vendee, other attractions are.... Read More...

L'Hermenault. This village is 12km North of Fontenay le Comte and is on the edge of the Praire. It is noted for the Bateau Barn in the grounds of the Chateau de L'Hermenault and the 'Faire de l'Anciene which takes place on the first Sunday in September.. Read More...

Ile D'Yeu. This beautiful island off the coast of the Vendee has been a favourite haunt for artist for years    Read More...

Jard sur Mer. The modern marina and the surrounding tourist facilities including cafes, restaurants and gift shops makes this a pleasant place all year round. The 11 century church has a statue of St. Radegonde. Read More...

.On the north-west corner of the Marais Poitevin where the marshes meet the ocean. Within in this commune lies the beaches of les Conches and Le Rocher.

This town is situated on the border of the Marais Poitevin and the Lucon-fontenay Prairie , it was once a sea port and was on the Roman road from les Sable d'Olonne to..   Read More...

Les Lucs-sur Boulogne. This town some 23 kms north of La Roche-sur yon is the centre for the memoirs of the Wars of the Vendee,   Read More...

Maille. This small town lies on a bend of the Deux Serve river in the heart of the Marais Poitevin, 4 kilometers south of Maillezais.

Built in 1003 its Benedictine abbey was once the burial place of the Dukes of Aquitaine. Resting on......  Read More..

Mallievre.The Fortress village of Mallievre overlooks the Serve Nantais in the Haut Bocage...  Read More...

. Picturesque town on the river Lay,it is home to the best wine growing area in the Vendee, a must for any wine lover ,the wine route is well marked...  Read More....

. A pretty village within the Mervent-Vouvant forest this village has some great attractions....Read More...

Montaigu. A market town in the north of the Vendee noted as the home of "the magic roundabout".

. Small town in the north east corner of the Vendee bordering the Loire-et-Maine department..

Moutiers les Mauxfaits.Ancient village with 18th century market hall on the La Tranche-sur Mer to La Roche sur Yon road. Read More....

Nallier. Attractive town on the border of the Praire and Marais Poitevin.

Nesmy. Known for its pottery, golf and waterside walks.

Nieul-sur-l'Autise.This very attractive village just 12 kilometers from Fontenay-le-Comte in the south of the Vendee is where Alienor d'Aquitaine was born in her...  Read More...

Noirmoutier-en-Ile. The main town on the island of Noirmoutier, a really charming port with fortified castle, glorious beaches and many attractions.

Olonne-sur Mer. From the Celtic, 'olona' High above water.4000BC there was a neotilhic civilization presence here and Menhirs have been found together with....    Read More...

Petosse. 10km north of Fontenay-le-Comte, noted for its underground passages and stories of witches who are supposed to passby on their way to their Sabbaths. Read more....

Pommeraie-sur-Sevre. 9 kms from Pouzauges on the Eastern border of the Vendee and Deux Sevres is the attractive village of La Pommeraie-sur-Sevre... Read More...

Port Bourgenay.A delightful modern marina, a golf course and the great beach of Vellion are just some of the delights. Read More...

Port de Courdault. This ancient port just east of Fontenay-le-Comte is a hidden gem on the Marais Poitevin.   Read More...

Port Joinville, The main town on the Ile d'Yeu.  Read More...

Pouzauges. Nestling in the Haut bocage this town is most noted for its ruined castle.  Read More...

In the Haut bocage lies a pretty village where time almost past it by. It was the home of Rene-Antoine Ferchaud who worked with Louis Pastier and is renowned for inventing the Thermometer.

La Roche sur Yon
This is the Prefecture (capital) of the Vendee, it is the administrive centre for industry, tourism, the courts and all.... Read More..

Rocheserviere. This pretty little village on the banks of the River Boulogne has been inhabited since Neolithic times. The Romans had a river crossing here and the old five arched bridge...   Read More...

Les Sables d'Olonne
Les Sables d'Olonne (lay sab do lon) situated about half way down the Vendees Atlantic coast is one of France's original holiday...      Read More...

Sallertaine. This interesting village in the Marais Breton was once an island. Today it attracts artists and artisans to its craft shops. One can also take a 'pinta' a guided tour around the former island.

Soullans.This town is 6kms South West of Challans where the marshes meet the Bocage and has its roots deeply embedded in a Neolithic past.

St Gilles Croix de Vie
This lively and beautiful seaside resort which spans the river Vie is attractive in all seasons with its bustling fishing port and marina, harbour side restaurants and....Read More...

St Hilaire des loges.At the point where the prairie rolls over into the bocage just east of Fontenay-le-Comte lies the village of St Hilaire des Loges.

St Hilaire-de-Riez. This small town now encompasses the seaside resort of Sion-sur-l'Ocean, the holiday village of Merlin Plage and Notre-dame-de-Riez. Attractions include; Bourrine du bois-Juquaud, Atlantic Toboggan and the Corniche Vendeen.

St.Jean de Monts.Every year thousands of visitors flock to this modern seaside resort with its 8 kilometres of beaches, its golf course and the massif state forest.

St Laurent-sur-Sevre
.  In the Haut Bocage bordering both Deux Sevre and the Loire-et-Maine departments.The Holy town of the Vendee... Read more...

St.Michel-en-l'Herm.Once an island in the Gulf of Picton it is now squarely in the part of the Marais Poitevin known as the Triaize Poulders.

St. Michel-Mont-Mercury. The highest point in the Vendee offers panoramic views from atop the church.

St. Hermine
.This is a cross roads for the Plain (Lucon/Fontenay Praire) and the Bocage. On the crossroad stands a Memorial to the great war which was unveiled by Clemenceau.

Talmont-St-Hilaire. Once a sea port this busy town is dominated by the ruined castle which was built by Richard the Lionheart. The Musee de Automobile de Vendee is situated just outside of the town. Read More..

La Trenche-sur-Mer.This very popular seaside resort originally known as Carvor has been a active port over the centuries due to the protection afforded by the Ile de Re.  Read More...

This is a small village between La Chataigneraie and Fontenay-le-Compte, in the Vendée  and is a self appointed member of the prettiest village in France club. Wherever you go in France you...  Read More...
Interesting towns close to the Vendee
Clisson Loire Atlantic.
Close to the border with the Vendee at the confluence of the rivers the Sevre Nantais and its tributary the Moines lies the picturesque town of Clisson with its roots in medieval history.   Read more...

Ile de Re. (charente Maritime)
Though not in the Vendee this 30 kilometer island just off the coast of the Vendee is connected by a 2.9 kilometer bridge to La Rochelle and.. Read More..

La Rochelle
(Charente Maritime.)
La Rochelle is not of course in the Vendee, but anyone who is visiting this part of France should make the effort to visit this most exquisite of towns. It is often referred to as the Jewel in the Bay of Biscay. Read more....

Marans. (charente Maritime) lying on the border with the Vendee it is one of those places you pass through on your way south, but a closer look reveals a very pleasant town on the Serve Niortaise river where the river Vendee joins and the south end of the Marais Poitevin.

Coulon,(Deux Sevre) This beautiful village in Deux Sevre is at the northern most end of the Green Venice. It is a must on anyone’s list of must see attractions.  Read More....

Niort. Capital of the Deux-Sevre this Roman garrison town has a beautiful restored Roman Keep which is today a Museum, old market hall, timber framed buildings and much more
More attractions in the Vendee
Donjon de Moriqc nr. Angle
La Boupere
Port de Courdault
La Roche-sur-yon
Pouzauges castle
La Trenche-sur-mer
Les Sables-d'Olonne
St Gilles Croix de Vie
Basilica at St.Laurent-sur-sevre
Lucon Cathedral
port Bourgenay
La Rochelle