Welcome to the Poitevin Marshes, a unique place where the land, shaped by man since the Middle Ages, now offers a natural landscape of great beauty. With its vast expanses of greenery and many winding canals, this haven of peace is the ideal place to come going green whether you are with your family, a couple, alone or with friends. Breathe in, you've arrived!
The Marais Poitevin, the French Green Venice
The Marais Poitevin Regional Nature Park awarded the Grand Site de France label is located in 3 departments: the Deux-Sèvres, the Vendée and the Charente-Maritime. There are 3 types of marshes: the Wet marsh, on Dried out marsh and the Sea Marshes. However, the wet marsh remains the best known of all. Second wetland in France after the Camargue, the Marais Poitevin is a real a haven of peace for lovers of the nature, this is a world of green landscapes, peaceful canals and an abundance of flora and fauna. A world born of the marriage of land and water that has been developed by man since the Middle Ages. Known as the "Green Venice, the Marais Poitevin offers a unique experience of navigation through its canals, in by boat, canoe or even in houseboat. Visitors can also explore its many walking trails or by bike.
It is an ideal place to relax and enjoy the unspoilt nature, only a few kilometres from the city of Niort, which is the urban capital par excellence and is also part of the Marais Poitevin Regional Nature Park. It is in fact the only town in France to be in a natural park regional, thus extending the "green conquest of the territory to a city where urban biodiversity is more than present.
How to visit the Marais Poitevin?
By traditional boat
The boat trip is a must to visit the Marais Poitevin. It is a unique experience not to be missed! You will discover the beauty of this Green Venice the water in complete serenity, accompanied by passionate local guides or in complete autonomy.
On the road, on a bicycle
It looks like the territory was designed for her. The bicycle is, after the boat, the other ideal way to cross the natural landscape of the Marais Poitevin. Get on your bike and let yourself go on the 900 km of cycle tracks or on the labelled cycle routes that wind through the territory.
On foot, on the white paths
Browse on foot the Marais Poitevin is the guarantee of getting as close to nature as possible. On the paths, between canals, bridges and green landscapes, discover the different faces of this Regional Nature Park at your own pace. There are numerous and varied itineraries allowing you to be accessible to all !
Cruising on houseboats
New in 2023!
Sailing on the Sèvre Niortaise between Niort and Marans, this is possible thanks to the electrically powered houseboats! Discover the nature stroll through the typical villages, take a walk in the bike or a boat and go for a walk for a while.
Our Little Cities of Character® (Nos Petites Cités de Caractère®)
The Petites Cités de Caractère® brand distinguishes French communes with fewer than 6,000 inhabitants, with a remarkable architectural and cultural heritage. These towns and villages are jewels to be discovered for their authenticity and timeless charm.
Coulon, capital of the Marais Poitevin
Coulon, a typical market garden village, is the starting point for discovering the Marais Poitevin. You will find there The House of the Marais Poitevin, a museum that will explain the history of the Marais in great detail. Continue your visit with a boat trip accompanied by a passionate boatman guide.
Real place of quietude, Arçais is an intimate village where nature and conviviality. On foot, by bike or by boat, discover the towpath from its large port. It will allow you to discover several jewels of this village between its canals, its green flora and its traditional stone houses.