Parc naturel régional du Marais Poitevin
The Green Venice
Nearly a thousand years ago, French monks dug canals to drain a huge swamp in the Poitou-Charentes region. Today, it's national parkland and you can rent a flat-bottomed boat to explore 500-plus miles of tree-lined canals. You can spot birds and the occasional cow, ferried in to graze in the pastures the monks created. It's wonderfully idyllic -- if you avoid weekend crowds in the summertime.
By Gayle Keck, AFAR Contributor
Have you been here? Share a tip or a photo with fellow travelers.