Must-see in Marais Poitevin
The Marais Poitevin National Park is a vast nature reserve with a wide range of beautiful landscapes.
The best way to discover the Green Venice and its secrets is by boat or canoe, either on your own or with a guide.
Halfway between Fontenay-le-Comte and Niort, the commune of Maillezais located in the south of Vendée near Damvix is a must-stop if you are art, history or nature lover.
Saint Pierre de Maillezais abbey is one of the emblematic sites of un des sites emblématiques et incontournables du Marais Poitevin!
Campsite near Saint Pierre de Maillezais abbey
Partially ruined abbey from the 11th century that has kept its majestic character.
It was first a Romanesque religious institution, then a Gothic cathedral. For centuries, the Abbey of Saint Pierre de Maillezais was important for the religion, but also for the economy of the area.
In the past, this monument was first as a fortress, then an abbey, and finally a cathedral. Famous people such as Agrippa d'Aubigné and Rabelais came there.
Maillezais Abbey is a great architecture marvel built by monks and an engineer-geographer.
It is open throughout the year and offers various shows.
During the summer, the city comes alive and organized theater tours with Gregorian chant and sacred music, an amazing sound and light show and a night market at the foot of the abbey.
Boat trip in the Marais Poitevin starting opposite the Abbey, boatmen will take you through the maze of canals and conches.
You can also go for a guided tours in the village.
Where to stay near Maillezais?
Comfortable accommodation and pitches awaits you at the campsite des Conches in Marais Poitevin at Damvix, less than 10 km from Maillezais!
Coulon and the Marais Poitevin house
Located along the Sèvre Niortaise, Coulon is one of the villages in the Marais Poitevin that is worth a visit!
Discover the Maison du Marais Poitevin and go the Prada jetty surrounded by lush nature.
From the campsite des Conches you can easily go to Coulon which is only 10 km away.
Coulon, the capital of the Green Venice
This beautiful village surrounded by stunning nature and also listed as one of the most “beautiful villages of France” is the capital of the Marais Poitevin.
What to do in Coulon ?
You can start to explore the village going to the square then the port de la Coutume.
Stroll through the alleyways of the old Coulon to the Place de l'Écu where you will see many dovecotes, then go to the Church of Sainte-Trinité before going to walk along the Sèvre Niortaise river.
Visit to the Maison du Marais Poitevin
La Maison du Marais Poitevin is a must-see in Coulon, you will learn there about the history of the marsh and the ancestral trades linked to the Marais Poitevin.
To explore the Marais Poitevin, you can rent a boat with or without guide on the Prada jetty opposite the Maison du Marais Poitevin
If you want to have lunch you can go to the picnic area or in one of the restaurants in Coulon.
Where to stay near Coulon?
Few kilometers only from Coulon, the campsite des Conches in Damvix offers cheap and comfortable accommodation and pitches for tents, motorhomes and caravans.
Discover the city of Niort, only 30 minutes driving from Damvix and the campsite des Conches.
Also known as the "Sentinel of the Marshes", the city of Niort has a stunning natural heritage, which includes the Poitevin Marshes.
The ancient medieval city also has a rich cultural heritage and it is listed as a "Ville et métier d'art".
What to do in Niort
The museum of the Donjon
Overlooking the valley of the Sèvre Niortaise, the Musée du Donjon is housed in a 23-metre high Romanesque fortress which offers a breathtaking panoramic view.
The museum has a permanent exhibition and a temporary exhibition.
Bernard d'Agesci Museum
The Bernard d'Agesci Museum is an interdisciplinary museum, with numerous collections in Fine Arts, Natural History and about the education conservatory, there is something for everyone!
If you are a contemporary art lover, don’t miss out the Pilori visual arts space in the Renaissance-style town hall built in the 16th century.
Le Pilori hosts many contemporary artists exhibitions.
The castle of Coudray-Salbart in Echiré
Not far from Niort, you can go to visit the castle of Coudray-Salbart in Echiré, a 13th century fortress steeped in legend, which appeals to young and old alike.
Halles de Niort
The Niort Halles is a listed heritage building made of metal and glass, designed by the architect Simon Durant.
Large undercover market situated near the Donjon museum divided in 2 parts (the stone hall and the metal hall), with many stalls selling fresh vegetables, fruits, honey, fish, meat, bread, cheese...
Jardins de la Brèche
The Jardins de la Brèche extend over 4 hectares of nature where you can go for a picnic or to play boules with family or friends.
Stroll in the garden of scents, the garden of the four seasons and the garden of insects and birds
These gardens also have playgrounds for children and a 100 m² area for pets.
Are you looking for a campsite near Niort?
The Campsite des Conches is located in Damvix, less than 30 minutes driving from Niort.
Mobile homes and pitches rental in a quiet environment surrounded by nature.
Covered and heated swimming pool.
Fontenay-le-Comte city of Arts and History
Walking through the medieval alleyways of the town center to the Fontaine des Quatre Tias, you will admire beautiful residences and private mansions with 16th century facades.
This walk through the old town of Fontenay leads you to the must-see Château de Terre-Neuve, one of the vendée renaissance treasures.
You can also visit the city museum and go for fun to the Parcabout, a tree-top-adventure park overlooking the city.
The Terre Neuve castle in Fontenay le Comte
One of the must-sees in Vendée, the Terre Neuve castle will delight young and old alike!
You can visit this splendid 16th century building on your own or on a guided tour where you can learn about the history of the place and its owners like the Duke of Sully and Agrippa d'Aubigné.
You will see inside a beautiful alchemy fireplace, antique furniture, collections in each room..and outside a lovely park.
Fontenay-le Comte museum is housed in the former presbytery of Notre-Dame, where you will see an amazing collection of Gallo-Roman glassware but also furniture, costumes, headdresses and paintings from Vendée artists.
Art and history lovers will enjoy this visit during their stay at Camping des Conches!