Discover the Marais-Poitevin
From the Atlantic coast to the city of Nice, the Marais Poitevin Regional Park is home to the second largest wetland in the country after the Camargue. Former maritime gulf, the region is crossed by many rivers and a network of canals forming the « Green Venice ». Of considerable ornithological interest, the Natural Reserve of Aiguillon located at the mouth of the Sèvre niortaise shelters a flora and a very rich fauna. At the heart of the Marais Poitevin, picturesque villages punctuate the landscapes of nature. Exceptional historical sites are also to be discovered, such as the Maillezais abbey overlooking the marsh, the cathedral of Luçon, or the castle of Newfoundland in Fontenay-le-Comte. Several interpretation houses of the marshes are to visit, including Coulon, capital of the Green Venice and classified as « Grand Site of France ». Boat trips, hikes, donkey rides, cycle routes or trailer tours, the Marais-Poitevin lends itself to many modes of discovery.
The Marais-Poitevin has a lot to offer lovers of nature and country settings. The essential activity is the ride in a flat-bottomed boat on the marsh’s canals. Many docks allow you to rent a « flat » for a circuit in the labyrinthine marsh. The Green Venice is the most popular part of the Marais-Poitevin Natural Park: its canals, sometimes very narrow, bordered with willows, ash tadpoles and alders offer a refreshing and enchanting water ride. In Saint-Hilaire-la-Palud, an ornithological park of 8 hectares offers you to discover with family the birds of the Marais Poitevin. In Coulon, Maison du Marais will allow young and old to learn more about the natural park, its history and how it works. For an original and fun visit of the marshes, the Saint-Georges-de-Rex breeding school offers baptisms and donkey rides.