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Saint Palais sur Mer


plage de saint palais

This seaside resort had a rapid developemnt at the end of the 19 th century. It is a smart little town in the outskirts of Royan. The inhabitants are called "Saint-Palaisiens" and "Saint-Palaisiennes".
At the mouth of the Estuary and face to the Atlantic Ocean Saint-Palais keeps many traces of the architecture from the "Belle Epoque" to the "Années Folles" (villas, chalets and small castles in varied styles) The town is situated in the heart of a pine tree forest next to the state forest "La Coubre".

From the north to the south you will find four beaches ("Concie beach which is the smallest, "Platin" beach, "Bureau" beach which is situated in the town center and "Nauzan" beach). They are joined together by a path (sentier des douaniers). You will discover there rocky formations such as "Le pont du Diable" or "le Puits de l’Auture". In the north "La Grande Côte" area is composed of a long straight beach.

The main park in the town is “Raymond Vignes” park. It is in the heart of the town center. It streches over 16 ha around a lake bordered with different species : pine trees and holm oaks. It is a leisure park with a mini golf, a tennis court and a mini harbour for boating. A picnic area has been organized and at the northern entry you will find a disco !

Saint-Palais is well-known for its night life; It is the reason why it is one of the favourite meeting point for young people.

Activities and cultural heritage

   vieille eglise eglise de st palais place du centre

The only civil monument which was built before the 19 th century is the lighthouse of “Terre Négre”. It was erected in 1772 and was raised in the 19 th century. It looks like a high tower which is 26 meters high and its base is hidden by the old guard’s house.
Some meters below Saint-Palais was built in the 20th century to take the place of the old sanctuary. It is in the neo-roman style which was in fashion at that time.

The old church Saint-Palais is situated out of the way of the town center. It was built in the 12 th century in the roman style. During a long time it was the parish church for Saint-Palais-de-Bren village. It was a disparate collection of villages and the inhabitants were making a living by fishing and agriculture.

"Notre dame du Platin" chapel was built in 1904. In 1909 it was extended and “Notre-Dame des Aviateurs” renamed to pay homage to Louis Blériot, a famous pilot who crossed the Channel that year. He is now the patron saint for the pilots. This chapel has been a place of pelgrimage since 1919 but it was bombed during the war. It was then rapidly rebuilt.

The temple in Courlay is the older place of cult in the area. It has its origins in a first sanctuary built in 1752 in spite of the bans in force at that time.
"L’Arquebuse" chapel was built in 1924 on a land belonging to a villa (Villa Louise) . It is composed of a rectangular nave. Some ogival openings give light. The front makes it different from the others because of a gothic canopy and a tower covered with roman tiles. In 1996 this chapel became a house.
The present "Bethanie" convent was built in 1923. First it intended for an orphenage. Then, it became a holiday center and later a warehouse for the german army during the Occupation.


saint palais sur mer en charente maritime

Mairie de Saint Palais
1, Avenue de Courlay
17420 Saint Palais sur Mer
Phone number: 05 46 23 56 56

Office de Tourisme de Saint Palais
1 Avenue de la République
17420 Saint Palais sur Mer
Phone number: 05 46 23 22 58


Camping(s) living on this municipality


Sources texts and photos: sites of the city hall, the Office of tourism and Wikipedia
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