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Come and discover all sorts of fishing techniques in the Pays de Saint Gilles Croix de Vie!

Gathering seafood by hand is an unmissable activity while you’re staying on the Vendée coast

Gathering seafood by hand is a relaxing and enjoyable activity. Make sure you’ve got all the necessary equipment, then off you go searching for shellfish in the rockpools or on the sand! Check the tide schedule to make sure you don’t get trapped anywhere when the tide comes in.

Where can we go in the Pays de Saint Gilles to gather seafood by hand?

  • At the Grande Plage in Saint-Gilles-Croix-de-Vie: go searching for bean clams in the sand.
  • In Brétignolles-sur-Mer / Marais Girard and La Sauzaie beaches: fishing for winkles, oysters, mussels, and shrimp in the rockpools.
  • In Saint-Hilaire-de-Riez / from Bussoleries beach to Sionbeach: fishing for winkles, oysters, mussels, and shrimp in the rockpools.

Authorised equipment: 3-prong claw, a knife for collecting clams, a bucket, net and basket.

Fishing at sea

The fishing port in Saint-Gilles-Croix-de-Vie is a significant place for local maritime heritage.
Hop aboard one of the fishing boats, such as the Ami du Pêcheur or the Mephisto IV for a half-day or evening outing, accompanied by experienced fishermen who will make sure your fishing trip is a successful one.

You can expect to catch mackerel, horse mackerel, pollock, pout, conger eel, whiting, etc.


in saltwater

Along the entire coastline (outside of swimming areas) and on the river Vie, the river Auzance and Brem marshes, you can go fishing without a fishing permit. What better an excuse to go on some great family fishing trips!
Fishing is not permitted in the fishing ports and marinas.

in freshwater

The rivers Jaunay, Vie and Ligneron cross through the Pays de Saint Gilles and as long as you have your own fishing permit, you can go fishing there to catch all sorts of white fish, perch, pike-perch, eel, carp, etc. You can also go fishing on the many lakes throughout the area, including Gué Gorand and Jaunay lakes.

Our favourites places for fishing:

  • Jaunay lake: for the perfect condition of the shores, the beauty of the place and the many species of fish here.
  • Gué Gorand lake in Coëx: for the peace-and-quiet, wide-open spaces and easy access.
  • Morinières lake in Brétignolles: the perfect place if you’re learning and the chosen venue for competitions.
  • The Pas Opton in Le Fenouiller: for the wild spaces, in the location of a former port.
  • On the jetty in Saint-Gilles: because you’ll feel like you’re out at sea, but with your feet on dry land.