Gironde Estuary Sights
Collected by John Oseid, AFAR Local Expert
33123 Le Verdon-sur-Mer, France
France’s oldest and most famous working lighthouse, the 69-meter-tall Cordouan is a gorgeous limestone structure at the mouth of the Gironde that has guided sailors for centuries. The original building, completed at the beginning of the 17th...
Impasse des Carrelets, 17132 Meschers-sur-Gironde, France
Lining the banks of the estuary, the many hundreds of traditional fishing huts on stilts called carrelets are an indelible image of the Gironde, and take their name from the pulley-operated square nets that jut into the water. Many of them are not...
33250 Pauillac, France
One of the region’s finest old wine towns, home to names like Château Lafite Rothschild and Château Latour, Paulliac's waterfront is lined with villas that reflect wealth acquired from the wine trade. Filled mostly with pleasure craft today, the...
Île de Patiras, 33390 Saint-Androny, France
Lying just off the town of Paulliac, the Île de Patiras is an oblong island—roughly four kilometers long and one wide—with a handsome restored lighthouse that was built under Napoléon III. Sailing past this former quarantine site affords a...
11, Avenue du 144ème Régiment d'Infanterie, 33390 Blaye, France
A number of structures throughout France designed by Louis XIV’s great 17th-century military architect and engineer, Vauban, are UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and three of them are at the mouth of the Gironde. Encompassing some 94 acres within its...
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