Islands along the French Atlantic Coast

Belle Île en Mer Island


Here is the gem of Britanny's archipelago! The Belle Île en Mer island offers an exceptional sunny weather, rarely frozen and less wet than on the mainland. Thanks to this plesant climate, beautiful Mediterranean plants can readily grow up.

But this lovely island also attracted tourists and sea lovers with its outstanding, romantic sights! "Belle Ile" is indeed worldwide renowned, attracting about 40,000 people in summer - whilst the island only includes 4,800 inhabitants out of the season!

Noirmoutier Island


Four authentic villages form the Noirmoutier island: Barbâtre, l'Épine, la Guérinière and Noirmoutier-en-l'Île. The latter gave its name to the island and made the pride of the inhabitants thanks to its fine sea salt - the local "white gold" - that used to be produced in the island marshes by the Benedictin monks of the region. During your journey, after a sunbath on the lovely sunny beaches, do visit the Castle of Noirmoutier which dates back to the 11th and 12th centuries - an authentic gem of History!

Yeu Island


The Yeu island is the furthermost island of France. The main activities on this wild, peaceful French island are fishing and tourism (but one part of the land is protected against human constructions).

The Ile d'Yeu has a superficy of 23km² and hosts about 4,800 permanent inhabitants. Its two harbours, Port-Joinville and La Meule, are famous for their tuna and crawfish flows.

Ré Island


The Ré island, off the west coast of France, is situated on the northern side of the Pertuis d'Antioche straits. 30 km long, 5 km wide, this great island has been connected to the city of La Rochelle by a 2.9km-long bridge since 1988.

The permanent population is about 16,000 inhabitants whilst in summer, the island hosts to 160,000 people. During the World War II, the beaches of the outstanding "Île de Ré" were fortified by German forces with bunkers, in order to block a possible seaward invasion. Many of these bunkers are still visible.

Oléron Island


The Oleron island is the largest French island after Corsica, stretching 34km in one direction and 15km in the other. Since 1966, the renowned Ile d'Oleron has been connected to the mainland by a huge road bridge - the longest French one (about 3km) - that has been free since 1991.

The Oleron harbour named Cotinière is an important and effective fishing harbour in France (the 12th). The locally produced oysters from Marennes are another renowned produce from the island, highly appreciated all over the country.

Aix Island


The Aix island - more commonly called Île d'Aix - is a small island in the Atlantic Ocean, off the west coast of France. The island received its name from a small town of the Charente Maritime department - Poitou Charente. Only 186 people (1999 figure) live there but this lovely small island (1.2 km²) attracts many nature lovers who like to take a walk on the beach. "L'Ile d'Aix" is indeed a popular place for tourist day-trips during the summer months.

Fort Boyard


Fort Boyard is a famous, authentic fort located between the Aix Island and the Oleron Island, in the Pertuis d'Antioche straits, on the west coast of France. In 1988, Fort Boyard's restoration started - for a television programme of the same name - and since then, the reputation of this original "island" has mainly relied on this adventure game show. The positive aspect is that it has restored the former glory of the Fort!

Batz Island


The Batz island is a nice island on the Finistere's coast. Stretched on about 12km², 15min away from the mainland, this outstanding yet small island offers sandy beaches where you could relax and enjoy the nice climate. Don't miss the lovely Georges Delaselle's garden with more than 2,000 exotic plant species!

Ouessant Island


The Ouessant island is the seventh biggest islamd island of France. 20km away from the west coast of the Finistere department of France, this island has a superficy of 15,6 km². Tourism is the main activity but vegetable and cereal exploitations take also part into the Ouessant island's reputation.

Ouessant island website

Molene Archipelago


The Molene archipelago is famous for its rich and varied natural inheritance. It received the "Man and Biosphere" award in 1988. This label contributed to protect the archipelago against human exploitations and tourist overflow.

Sein Island


Located 8km away from the mainland, the Sein island is often subjected to the Atlantic ocean’s anger, causing many violent storms. A journey on this exceptional, small and wild island may give you the impression to be completely lost in the Atlantic Ocean!

Glenan Archipelago


Only 8 miles away from the Brittany coast, the Glenan islands are like a wild atoll in the Atlantic Ocean vastness. Thanks to surrounding clear water, this archipelago gives you the opportunity to discover the marvellous marine life.

The water-sports centre of Glenan is one of the best European sailing schools, complemented with the international diving centre and outstanding natural reserves.

Groix Island


With more than 2,200 inhabitants, Groix is the second island of the Brittany region. The rocs reveal their own history - kind of natural geologic museum! The Groix island is mainly famous for its outstanding beach "Les Grands Sables" which is constantly moving because of the two tidal currents.

Houat Island


On the Houat island, most of people are fishermen, making a living from crab and lobster productions, even though tourism activities have increased for many years now.

The Houat island boasts natural ferns and other protected plants; it was selected by "Natura 2000" for its rich and diversified fauna and flora.

Hoedic Island


In winter, only 117 inhabitants live on the Hoedic island but during the summer season, the population grows up to 3,000 people! Summertime indeed offers a new, busy life to this small, outstanding island.

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