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Fort Boyard and the Arsenal of the Charente estuary.

Visit Fort Boyard and the Charente estuary, two of the treasures of Charente-Maritime

To defend the Arsenal de Rochefort and the Charente estuary from enemy ships, several forts were built over almost 200 years. The most famous of them is of course Fort Boyard!

A majestic stone vessel with a potbellied carcass, Fort Boyard guards the mouth of the Charente.

Although it is not accessible to the public, you can approach it quite closely, thanks to the many organized sea tours. Take a cruise and discover the fort like you've never seen it before. You will sail towards the famous "stone ship", originally built to guard the mouth of the Charente, the harbour of the island of Aix and the arsenal of Rochefort. Its construction, instigated by Napoleon, lasted nearly 60 years, including 20 years just for the basics. Napoleon furthermore, did not see its completion, even when he left the island of Aix for exile in 1815.

Fort Boyard is known worldwide for his television show. Its complex construction was an architectural feat, but did not have any real, practical function on the day of its inauguration. Nearby, you will discover other forts, to visit during your holiday: Fort Louvois, Fort Enet, Fort Lupin etc. Let your imagination run wild!

The Charente estuary, an important trade route.

171 km long, the Charente estuary is located between Angoulême and the Atlantic Ocean. The Charente is a broad, winding river, dotted with historic towns and villages such as Saintes, Rochefort and Saint-Savinien.

La Charente is a paradise for fishermen, since it has many species of fish: trout, pike, carp, eels or perch. These fish are the delight of local chefs and restaurateurs.

La Charente has actively participated in the development of the local vineyards. Indeed, many vineyards, winery and cognac distilleries can be found along the length of the river.

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