At the height of the season the town transforms into a vibrant, bustling community that attracts both tourists and locals to its beaches, restaurants and local festivals.
The spectacular Grande Plage is a must-visit with 3.5km of unspoilt coastline and inviting walks, sand castles, sun loungers and a variety of beach and sea sports. With a range of seaside shops, restaurants and bars on the promenade behind, you’ll be able to while away the hours whilst children will be happily entertained.
Other magnificent beaches at just a short distance include Sion sur l’Ocean and Bretignolles-sur-mer (at both of these you can go rockpooling when the tide is out), and St Jean de Monts, which is another superb sandy beach.
From the harbour in St Gilles, you can take a short boat trip to the idyllic Ile d’Yeu, an offshore island where time stands still. Superb beaches, ideal for exploring on foot, by bike, bus or by rented motor bike.
A classy retreat with traditional huts and miles of pine forest backing on to the beach – it’s a special get-away and somewhere delightful to spend a day.
Drive north along La Corniche Vendéen
The short drive up to St Jean de monts provides a breath-taking view out over La Corniche (north on the D38), St Gilles’ rocky
northern coastline. There are plenty of viewpoints and places to park up and jump down on to the beach to explore and if you time it well, you may see in action a blow-hole in the cliffs, known as “The Devil’s Hole”.
Shops and supermarkets
St Gilles has two large supermarkets, L’Eclerc and HyperU on the outskirts of the town, as well as a lovely pedestrianised shopping street on the opposite side of the river.
Restaurants & Bars
The town is well served with bars and restaurants to suit every taste and budget. Our staff are happy to recommend somewhere
to dine, and to make a reservation for you if you would like us to.
There’s a daytime market twice a week selling local fresh fruit, vegetables, bread and crafts and during high season there’s also a captivating night market, selling crafts and jewellery and featuring a carousel for children.
If you’re into sport, there’s plenty right on the doorstep. St Gille’s École de surf will teach surfing, and golf aficionados will appreciate the two local golf courses; Les Fontenelles (near Coex) and the course in St Jean de Monts.
St Gilles’ local cinema (en route to HyperU) often runs local events. Check out the cinema listings in the local cinema and don’t worry if your French isn’t fluent, many English films are shown in English with French subtitles. Lookout for ‘VO’ (Version Originale) next to the film’s name.