Off the coast of France in the Atlantic Ocean lies one of the quaintest sailing towns in the country. La Rochelle is just three hours by train from Paris and has much to do for the sailing enthusiast. The town is laid with brick and this charming port comes to life at night. The town is filled with artists and performers along the water way. There is a Ferris wheel and plenty of candy shops set up. Many streets are packed full of tiny restaurants offering that day's catch or the classic mussel dish.
I remember as a kid coming here running along the water line pointing at the old fort and being amazed by how many boats were slammed into the port. This last summer I got to go again and relive my memories.
Île de Ré is connected to La Rochelle which is a tiny island off the coast. Its the vacationer's dream and is filled with very small villages along the island. It is the Parisian's go to spot for vacation and is their version of the Hamptons. One side of the island has great beaches and the other is designed more for sailing. The island is most famous for their salt that many chef's covet to have in their pantry. While over in Île de Ré, head to the port Saint Martin and enjoy a nice meal over looking the boats. Then head Plage des Gollandières for a perfect beach day.
Many of the restaurants have great prefix's for under 25 euro that give you a taste of their menu. Make sure to get some salt water taffy and a bag of the island's salt to enjoy. Spending a few days between La Rochell and Île de Ré is an amazing way to have a laid back time and just enjoy the fresh ocean air.
Overall this region of France boasts many relaxing activities in the sun and never fails to impress for their awesome seafood.
Photos of Île de Ré