L'Ile d'Yeu - the French island paradise


Port Joinville

The next time you are planning a trip to Paris and are searching for a place where the French holiday - L'île d'Yeu is well worth the visit. For couples and families alike there is plenty to do here. 

 The winding streets of Saint Sauveur

A week on this island is a good amount of time to get a feel for the charming way of life in the ancient fishing villages that are dotted around the island. 

Port Joinville

This is where Parisians go for their summer holidays and long weekends and it is a popular place for holiday homes. Famous for fishing tuna and lobster, the seafood is to die for.

How to get here

Two ferries operate daily from Port Fromentine and Saint Gilles Croix de Vie. The fast ferry takes just half an hour, the large ferry takes one and a half hours. Charter planes and helicopters are also available, for maps and timetables check the Island website.

The island 

Hollyhocks line the pretty streets of L'Ile d'Yeu
Eight kilometers by ten kilometers, this island paradise in the Atlantic is the perfect size to be able to explore everything in a week. Beaches, villages and the harbor are accessible by a myriad of beautiful bike tracks. The best way to see the island is by push bike - it is flat and there are few cars. 

Port Joinville and Port de la Meule

Port Joinville

Arriving in the stunning ancient port you immediately notice the distinctive white buildings with blue shutters and terracotta roof tiles.

Port de la Meule

There is another tiny port, port de la Meule which is rocky and sheltered. There is a fabulous restaurant if you want to while away an afternoon watching the fishing boats bobbing in the quaint harbor and the enormous gulls diving for fish.

Port de la Meule - wild flowers, water and fishing boats

Port Jointville

Lively bars, crêperies and restaurants line the port. Looking through a forest of masts to the ferry this is a quaint village. The few cars on the island are generally vintage deux cheveux Citroens and mokes. 

Vintage car in Jointville

Saint Sauveur

You could think you are in Greece as you explore the winding streets of Saint Sauver, with bright white homes and blue shutters. Gardens in Saint Sauveur

The gardens are breathtaking, hollyhocks and hydrangeas thrive in this mild climate. The Roman church is the highest point on the island and is a stunning landmark.

Saint Sauveur

 

The Markets

Saint Sauveur market

Saint Sauveur market

Agapanthus at the market

There are two markets daily, one in Port Joinville and the other at Saint Sauver. Fresh local produce, including the juiciest raspberries, locally made preserves, charcuterie, olives, divine fresh bread, crepes and coffee, and why not a glass of rosé in the sweet wine bar! 

The Beaches

The island boasts a huge amount of varied beaches, for sunrise, sunset, sun baking and swimming. It is obligatory to spend time on the water, whether you're fishing, diving, sailing or kayaking, or even horse riding!

Sandy beaches

 

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