Trentemoult is a quarter where fishermen used to live. It is right along the Loire and has a very small harbor facing the more impressive other side of the city.
Trentemoult is now becoming quite dynamic, with some bobos settling there and living a more arty life. Because, Trentemoult inspires and make you feel you are not really in the city.
Some nice cafes and restaurants along the Loire. Only been there once when the weather was alright but must be terrific in spring and summer.
I love this kind of place, where you just take time to enjoy usually "unsignificant" pleasures: taking a glass of white wine and eating fresh fish on a terrasse, with people you love.
You can go there by bus (check on Nantes' TAN website) or car.
I discovered recently l'Epicier d'Art. I had heard several times about this art gallery that sold paintings, photos and sketches for very cheap prices (under 50€!), but could not really figure out where the shop was located. I knew it was near Saint Nicolas' church, a few minutes from where I live but did not find the shop. Thing is l'Epicier d'Art is located underground. you just find a notice board in front of the building to tell you there is an art gallery downstairs. Added with few advertsing, you have to be told about this shop to actually find it. Well, lets go to the point. The art gallery is really unusual and truely interesting. Claude, the owner, exhibits art from 600 different people. His philosophy: art at a cheap price. Which does not mean cheap quality. Excellent art gallery for those who want to buy art but usually cannot because it is too expensive. The local itself is very interesting. it is actually a kind of apartment, fulled of paintings and tags. Even if I live in Nantes, every time I go there it is actually if I was escaping from the city to go to another world. Recommended for curious people and art lovers.
L'Ile de Nantes is definitely an off the beaten place to go. It is a small island south of Nantes. Well, dont think tropical island or anything like this. Right now, it is an industrial island. It used to be a main industrial center for the city and hosted Nantes' harbour.
Since a few years, the city decided to rehabilitae this place and make it a new center for the city. Thus the new court of justice has been implemented there (and was designed by famous architect Jean Nouvel). The architecture school is to be built there too. And there are many other projects to be done there.
Interesting thing to see right now is the evolution of this place. Currently it is a kind of no man's land, with buildings in construction, old industrial places and weird modern buildings. For those who know Rotterdam, it reminds of Kop van Zuid.
Going there give you a good feeling of what is Nantes' potential. And if you come back to Nantes in a few years, you will not recognize the place...
If interested, check on www.iledenantes.com
Along the Loire harbour, you can visit a militiray boat: le MAILLE BREZE. I did it when I was quite young so I dont remember very accurately.
Thing is you actually have a very special atmosphere, that of cold war (even if this boat probably never get involved in any cold war conflict).
The boat is pretty big, grey and most people in Nantes have either visited it or heard about it.
A great unusual place to visit.
There is a safari parc near Nantes! Clearly it is not a common situation to find rhinos in the North West of France... It is situated in Port Saint Pere, 20 kilometers from Nantes and is called Planete Sauvage.
Great place to go, at any age. 10 kilometers of safari road, where you will meet lions, elephants, tigers, rhinos and many other wild animals from Africa and Asia.
The entrance is around 16€.
I've been there this week-end and just walked there for about 1.5 hours.
They have nice trees and flowers, a small lake and it seems pretty quiet, that's what I liked.
There are also tennis courts up there, but they were full at the time we arrived there.
At the beginning was pretty difficult to find the park, but then I easily found the way back throught the center.
There are a lot of vineyards nearby Clisson. They produce Anjou Wine (red or white)and the famous MUSCADET.
We enjoyed a 'Porte Ouverte' by a wine grower in Beaulieu sur Layon and we tasted his 'Coteaux du Layon' which is sweet white wine. I brought a sufficient number of bottles to taste for some years in the future.
Shop until you drop in the lovely old streets of Nantes! Many souvenirshops and clothing shops are here. You can also take a walk in the parc or enjoy a nice club sandwhich on a terrace with a nice housewine to combine with it.
The seaside is really close to Nantes (40 miles west) and there is the nicest beach in Europe : La Baule.
It's a 15km long beach with a nice sand!!
Once there, you should also see the 'Wild Coast' from Le Pouliguen to Le Croisic...the landscape is wonderful!
a cinema called' UGC Apollo' where you can see movies for only 2 euros! located in 20 & 21 rue Racine, next to theater Graslin. Be careful, sometimes there's only one showing in the week
this was the old shipyard of nantes administration building, and now it is used for exhibition and expo of various events right in a nice park across the river loire on the bridge anne de bretagne.
Known in French as the Maison des Hommes et des Techniques or the house of men and their techniques, show case the world of marine building and the folks behind them.
Until 1987, Nantes was a huge boat building center. The expo on the boat builders traces this history of 2000 years that have made a huge impact on the region. YOu will see the evolution of boat building, and the naval duties, work condition,and also, the river, the harbor, the transbord bridges, and the great mutations in the island or île de Nantes. They will show you tools, films, small scale models of these to demontrate their place in history.
Nice educational place for the whole family. It is close in August, otherwise, open Mondays to Fridays from 10h-12h30 ,and 14h-18h. Open Saturdays and Sundays from 14h - 18h. admission is FREE
The cruising on the river Loire is spectacular ,here the river is wide and gorgeous,and plenty of boats to take you around. We enjoy the Chatenay on a rainy cool day.
The service is the navibus, or the bus on water. You can telechargez les horaires on the page in contact middle section
You have one every 10 minutes in rush hour times and each 20 mins in the rest of times.
The line 1 of the tramway awaits you at the exit of the Navibus in the passenger terminal or Gare Maritime , from the bus parking you can ,also leave your car at the boarding in Trentemoult.
you can,also, take a trip to Saint Nazaire from Nantes
well you want to go on board a real destroyer, Maillé-Brézé is from 1988 the first naval museum on water in France.
The boat takes the name of the museum,and the name comes from Jean Armand de Maillé, Marquis de Brézé, Duke of Fronsac , that lived from 1618-1646, son of a Marshal of France and nephew of cardinal Richelieu. He was born at Saumur.
the boat has a lenght of 132,65 meters, by 12,70 meters wide , taking water at 5,80 meters with a fully loaded charge of 3 900 tons. It was manned by 277 men of which 17 were officers and 100 marines . its 63 000 horsepowers allows it a speed of 33 knots with a radius of 4 100 nautical miles ( 6 600 Kms).
the museum visit on board takes about an hour and if include the machines add half an hour. All visits are with guide. A neat idea to see a real warship in good shape on the river Loire!!!
I love those LU cookies, and the original is from here Nantes. Located at 2 Quai Ferdinand Favre ,and long gone from cookies the place is now a unique center of theater, circus, dance, music, expositions, culinary art, literature, philosophy, architecture,and university events.
Don't missed the now Bar Lu, and the great Haman Zeîn inside. For me it was the live music at the bar Lu that was interesting to see in a place overlooking the old castle of the dukes of Brittany!
see the upcoming performers here
This could be put in nightlife section as well but as it is unique and seldom visited I am putting in off the beaten path
it remains a sight in the landscape of Nantes and one to visit while at the chateau ::)
The center point of what is sublime chic branchée nice in Nantes, the Place Royale or royal square. It is the image in marbre of the city of Nantes. It has a trident of Neptune, with allergeries in bronze of the Loire and its confluents the Erdre,Sèvre, Cher, and the Loiret. Built between 1790-1794 over old fortifications now serve as the articulation of the city between the old town and new urban visage of Graslin.
It was the architect Crucy,also, the builder of the place Graslin,that link it with the place Royale by the street rue Crébillon. It is like a rectangle to the east and a hemisphere to the west. The orientation is on the axis east west slighly turn to the south west north east. A fountain symbol of the city is at the center of the rectangular part.
The square is entirely renovated with blocks of granite tiles and connects to nine streets, such as rue Crébillon,rue de la Fosse, rue de Gorges, rue La Pérouse,rue d'Orléans,rue du Commandant-Boulay, rue de l'Arche-Sèche,rue Saint-Julien and rue des Vieilles-Douves. The square is located in one of the lowest point of the city.