Camping in Vendee, France

Okay, we are considering a camping trip to France in our Land Rover 109".

Had a look at getting across the channel - Dover or Eurostar is pretty cheap - £100 or so. But we want to go to La Rochelle so really want to cross to Caen. How much money!!! over £500 - and more during school hols.

So, any advice on how to get there on less cash (short of doing the Dover crossing and driving cross-country.

Also, anyone done camping in France in this area? We have a 2-year old and so are looking for child-friendly sites.

Finally, I run on LPG - what is the availability of this in France?




  • Louisa_Jane_2
    Try this site and search for an answer or post a question, its really good for all aspects of camping- I have found it very helpful in the past. You shouldn't have a problem with LPG - some friends of ours went camping last year said it was OK.
  • billy_the_kid_2
    You wont be able to take your LPG car through the chunnel, I'm afraid.
  • Louisa_Jane_2
    Regarding campsites - try looking through all the camping brochures and websites - ,, ,etc etc. See what you think, you'll know whether this is the kind of site you want ( lots of facilities, kids clubs , english spoken by the majority (if you get my drift!)), or you'll know which ones to avoid! Try for reviews of all campsites.
  • ScotBoy
    ScotBoy Posts: 100 Forumite
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    Thanks for the helpful information. I was aware about the problem with LPG and the chunnel.

    The problem with the eurocamp-type sites is the expense during school holidays (Other half is a teacher). I am turning my attention to independent sites I think. Still have the problem with the crossing though - Condor and LDLines seem to be the best options (We are in Swidon so it is easier to head straight south rather then get to Dover etc.)

  • jaymac_2
    jaymac_2 Posts: 1,740 Forumite
    Pity about the other half; Matthews Holidays have two weeks in September in a caravan from £299 including short crossing. I'm giving up teaching in July and intend to make the most of term time bargains!
  • jopsey
    jopsey Posts: 840 Forumite
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    we went to vendee about 5 years ago its a lovely place and beaches are really lovely we didnt have any small children then only a 12 yr old who was even"bored" in disney you know the age,we have know got a 10 month old and I would defenitly think of going back

    We found it cheaper to book the holiday through French life as a package it worked out much cheaper that way but make sure you book a cabin on ferry dont think you would manage with a little un otherwise

    We stayed at a travelodge at portsmouth and stayed at a formule 1 hotel once we got to le harve just to break the journey (both v cheap and cheerful but worth it )

    Hmm got me thinking now might have a look on french life website for any offers
  • Rickycowslip
    we did the trip from Calais to the Vendee last Summer because of the cost of the Brittany crossings. Heck of a plod... Don't think we'll ever do it again - someone described the Vendee on the internet "as flat and featureless as Norfolk with the tackiness of Blackpool". I gave it the benefit of the doubt - I made a mistake...

    My French favourites for camping (having been doing it for the past 10 years with three kids) are Loire Vally (love the chateaux), Dordogne (the canoeing is excellent) and Annecy in the Alps. The South of France is lovely, but its got to be out of season because of the traffic, and its an incredibly long drive...
    am I missing something ??
  • kirstypie
    Just lost my message! AARGH!! Anyway, the cheapest way to do it us to use your tesco points with french Life as they are accepted there and you can bump up your points using the codes posted on the tesco threads - fantastic bargain then!! haven't paid for a holidays since the deals were introduced and we average 2-3 a year!
    We did the Dover Calais route onec to the vendee and stopped off at the Novotel Rouen sud which was fantastic for babies and children - really broke up the journey and it wasn't as bad as doing it in one. Hotel near az wee forest and close toa dupermarket, retauarants etc although the hotel restauarnt and bar were great - kds area next to the bar which was handy!
    We've been to a few sites in the vendee which were great but the best one by far for young children is slightly further north in the Golfe du Morbihan in Brittany. camping Mane Guernehue is fab!! It's near the village of baden - a few minutes walk away and has a bakers, butcher, bar, restauarant, tourist info and PO. The area is quiet and peacefula nd the site ahs everything you need. What has mad it stand out romt eh rest is the pool complex which is fantastic! the main pool is shaped and is very shallow for a quite a way in - no edges so my 2 (1y 3m and 2.5 at the time) were able totoddle in and out. the kids pool was just right - not too deep as some are and had a little slide. The amin slides and adult only pool are sepaate. the poolside bar/restauarnt is excellent and has a mini toddlers play area whic was very useful!! there is a bouncy castle, 3 fishing lakes (with ducks for feeding!( and a field of donkeys next to the lakes. tehre was also a pen of goats near the donkeys so the kids loved it! Everything we needed na dit was perfect. Only drawback is that there is a steep hill and we were at the bottom! Thoroughly recommneded for a little one! local towns are gorgeous with mini trains to take you round and good hypermarkets nearby at Auray. need to drive to a beach though.
    Re the ferry, DO NOT take the daytime St malo express - otherwise known as the Vomit Comet - dreaful! never seen so many people sick, we went though all the emergency clothing for the kids.
    For more info try the forum on just hover over a French area and the drop down menu will let you choose discussion board - post your questions on there.
    Bon vacances!
  • martindow
    martindow Posts: 10,230 Forumite
    Name Dropper First Post First Anniversary
    It all depends what sort of holidays you want. Some of the Vendee is very touristy - St Jean de Monts for example but there are lots of lovely places - Island of Noirmoutier is lovely and seems quite Mediterranean and I also like inland around Challans and further south towards the Venise Vert. We used to stay at the municipal site at le Perrier between St Jean de Monts which was very peaceful and quiet but only a short drive to beaches etc. and also one on Noirmoutier which was next to the beach. As nearly everybody was French there was a lack of noisy, rowdy behavoiur. This was some years ago so you would need to search for more up to date info. Both were very nearly full in the summer and it would be best to book. The Vendee is noticeably better for weather than Brittany even though it is only just the other side of the Loire.
  • cheekymole
    cheekymole Posts: 3,416 Forumite
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    Are you taking your own camping stuff or looking for one with tents to hire?
    I haven't got one!
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