Vineyards…green vines and red-tiled roofs!
Just minutes from the city of Nantes are peaceful vineyards that benefit from the proximity of the sea and the River Loire. The gentle climate is another advantage enjoyed by the Vignoble Nantais (Nantes Vineyard region). Covering some 30,000 acres/12,000 ha, this is the cradle of the famous Muscadet wine. So, too, are charming villages and towns, such as Clisson, where you could be in Tuscany, thanks to the landscape and also to the Italian architecture of the Garenne-Lemot estate.Visit the website
The river Loire and its estuary
Running east-west, the River Loire is the spine of the département. But the scenery constantly changes, just as the currents regularly sculpt new sand banks just outside Nantes. By foot, by bike or by boat, there are many different ways to explore the Loire and its vast estuary, but always, you have glorious, unforgettable views over France’s longest river.Visit the website
The Atlantic Coast
Thanks to its 83 miles/133 km long coastline, its sunny micro-climate and clean air, the Loire-Atlantique is great for seaside holidays. Choose between long sandy beaches and intimate coves, between tall dunes and rocky bays. You will discover the Loire-Atlantique seaside resorts, towns well-known for their charming villas such as Le Croisic, La Baule or Pornic, or even have a go at water sports. The Loire-Atlantique is all about choice !Visit the website
The Nantes-Brest Canal
You will love boating on the Nantes-Brest Canal. What started out as Napoleon’s grand plan to foil a British blockade of French ports some 200 years ago is now a lovely way to enjoy the unspoiled Loire-Atlantique countryside.From Nantes in the south to Brest in the north, the canal is some 225 miles/360 km long, with 236 locks. The villages, cafés and locks are natural meeting points for locals and holidaymakers alike.Visit the website
La Brière…the “Black Country”!
Protected as a nature park since 1970, La Brière is an ecological treasure chest. Criss-crossed by canals and dotted with thatched cottages, La Brière marsh is second only in size in France to the Camargue. Nicknamed the “Pays Noir”, or Black Country, the Briere marsh is accessible by the canals and water meadows in a ‘chaland’, a traditional flat-bottomed boat or thanks to hiking trails. As for the ‘chaumières’, or thatched cottages, there are more than 3,000 of them – well over half of the thatched cottages in the whole of France !Visit the website
The salt marshes…the land of “white gold”!
Over the centuries, this landscape has been remodelled by man to make Sel de Guérande, fine sea salt prized by gourmets. The tide washes in over the salt marshes round the villages of Guérande, Mès, Mesquer and Saint-Molf. The rights and skills for harvesting salt are passed down from generation to generation – a history going back over 1,000 years. This 5,000 acre/2,000 ha area is also home to 280 species of birds. At the edge of the salt marshes, Guérande, a city of art and history, still encircled by a mile of impressive ramparts, complete with fortified gates.Visit the website
Le Lac de Grandlieu… and its mysterious heritage!
Le Lac de Grand-Lieu (Grand-Lieu Lake) is one of France’s largest natural lakes. It is also one of Europe’s most important wetlands. In winter, this shallow lake can cover as much as 15,000 acres/6,300 ha. No wonder this is such an important wildlife refuge for some 250 species of birds, almost half of whom nest here. These wetlands were designated as a wildlife/nature reserve back in 1980 and the dense vegetation provided by Mother Nature has been retained.Visit the website