Saint-Hilaire-de-Riez Things to Do

  • Reading a book at the beach.
    Reading a book at the beach.
    by Jerelis
  • Enjoying some quality time at the beach.
    Enjoying some quality time at the beach.
    by Jerelis
  • Facing the main square.
    Facing the main square.
    by Jerelis

Most Recent Things to Do in Saint-Hilaire-de-Riez

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    Reading a book!

    by Jerelis Written Apr 3, 2012

    2 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Wondering what to pack for your next vacation? Yes, we always have some stress related to this issue. As an experienced traveler I always combine some days to relax with some days to explore the surroundings, beautiful historical cities or hiking the amazing National Parks. So I can easily say that whenever I am on vacation, I often want to relax, escape and unwind. There is nothing quite like a good book to accomplish these things.

    Being away for many days on a vacation break will of course give you a great chance of getting your head into a good book or two, but which books should you choose to take with you? I do take along some ‘beach books’: a good beach book is engaging and a quick enough read that you can finish most of it on the beach before my sunscreen wears off. A beach book isn't necessarily literature, but a beach book that will entertain. With these beach books in my hand, all I need to remember is my towel and sunscreen.

    But some literature is also coming along, because having a vacation, whatever the time of year, usually makes me turn my thoughts to which good book should we take with me? Sitting in my comfortable chair after a beautiful day with long walk, reading a good book in the evening makes it complete.

    Reading a book at the beach. Enjoying some quality time at the beach.
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    • Beaches
    • Budget Travel
    • Family Travel

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    City Center - Keep your eyes open.

    by Jerelis Updated May 31, 2011

    What else has the city centre of Saint Hilaire de Riez to offer? Well let me say this ... as we are from The Netherlands we are used to doing a lot by foot and Saint Hilaire de Riez is a village in which everybody walks and you're truly able to explore all the sights by foot. Our two feet were our best friends and therefore we were able to enjoy all the scenery Saint Hilaire de Riez has to offer. It has a main street and some little paths to explore. Of course the beautiful Sion’s Chapel (1900) is a fine example of beautiful architecture and is a must see!

    Other places of interest are the streets of Maison 2004 St-Hilaire de Riez 85270, which is a street with very typical, rather small houses, they are all white and have blue wooden panels in front of their windows. Further more do visit the central square, which is the centre of the social life in Saint Hilaire de Riez. The streets do wind and wander a little bit, but that's just fun! Just enjoy the small and characteristic houses you will see along, with in the backdrop the amazing blue sky (and knowing the beach is out there) which surround this little village. We ended up at a picturesque cobblestone alleyway, a graceful statue, a church, fountain and a selection of Cafés where we had our lunch and by the end of the day had a nice cold beer and rose!

    A beautiful statue.
    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Hiking and Walking
    • Road Trip

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    City Center - Mairie de Saint Hilaire de Riez.

    by Jerelis Written May 25, 2011

    The origin of the village of Saint Hilaire de Riez can be traced from as long ago as the 4th century, turning it into one of the most ancient spots of the region. There are many different ancient spots to explore within this town, as well as the general appearance of it is rewarding by itself due to its charming houses and buildings. A lot has changed since the old times, but still some is presented in the same way as many hundred years ago. Saint Hilaire de Riez doesn't have a rich cultural heritage, but does have long traditions and customs that are kept alive.

    One of the buildings which strikes the eye immediately is the neo-Gothic Parish Church: Mairie de Saint Hilaire de Riez. Even when you arrive at the church from the backside and not the front you'll see that the mighty church tower of the Parish Church ranks among the other buildings in the village. Dedicated to Saint Hilaire, the Bishop of Poiters, who converted the region to Christianity, the original church was built in 1025. Its location was about the same as today’s church and it adjoined a priory. This beautiful Church of Saint Hilaire de Riez is an attractive example of the neo-Gothic style, with its triangular arches and ribbed vaults, and the symmetry and regularity of its stonework.

    View at the beautiful church.
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    • Hiking and Walking
    • Road Trip
    • Historical Travel

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    City Center - The wealth of a small town.

    by Jerelis Written May 25, 2011

    We witnessed that in a super-touristy country like France, we used to have a very hard time finding scenic spots that are not crowded, especially in the summer. However, it's also very known that the majority of the international visitors usually hang out only in a few of the major cities of the Vendée, some extensive Chateaus and maybe one or two small towns in the area. If this is your way of travelling you definitely will miss out on the wealth of small towns with rural appeal that this particular part of France has to offer. Little gems with lots of history that just wait to be discovered, like the small village of Saint Hilaire de Riez.

    On the sandy coastline of the Corniche Vendéenne you will find Saint Hilaire de Riez, one of the chief places along the coast and a popular summer and beach resort. The village is beautifully situated between the rocky coastline of Saint Gilles Croix de Vie and the very touristic Saint-Jean-de-Monts. It's is situated just above sea level and has only 10,063 inhabitants.

    One of the nice streets of Saint Hilaire de Riez.
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    • Road Trip
    • Hiking and Walking

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    Mairie de Saint Hilaire de Riez – 3 Baroque altars

    by Jerelis Written Apr 20, 2011

    It really doesn't matter how you travel towards Saint Hilaire de Riez. Whether you come by car or by bike you will finally arrive at a huge parking lot just in the centre of the village and you can't miss the Mairie de Saint Hilaire de Riez. We learned that the building suffered considerable damage during the religious wars of the 16th century. In 1609 it was decided to built a tower, which can still be seen today, and some years later, a first restoration was undertaken.

    Once inside we immediately saw the 3 altarpieces which were built between 1650 and 1676 and were placed in the chancel and the aisles. Baroque in style, these altarpieces (which are listed historic monuments) depict two scenes from the New Testament. In the 19th century a second large restoration campaign was undertaken. The construction methods at that time were Roman and Gothic styles and therefore this current neo-Roman and neo-Gothic building came about. All this beauty can be discovered or rediscovered during the church's opening hours. It’s open to the public every day from 10am and 6pm. There is a free guided tour every Tuesday at 10:45am. This church is a must visit!

    Inside the church. Facing up ... Baroque style interior.
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    • Architecture
    • Religious Travel
    • Historical Travel

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    Mairie de Saint Hilaire de Riez – Lighting candle

    by Jerelis Written Apr 20, 2011

    Although we were quite early when we first arrived at the Parish Church of Saint Hilaire de Riez we were already allowed to enter it. A huge advantage of our early arrival was the fact that there were almost no tourists. Either the bus / coach did not arrive yet or everybody was still having a break. Whenever we visit a church the kids always want to burn a candle, it has become a bit of a tradition. The Sight of burning votive candles - real or electronic - is common in most Catholic churches. The candles are usually placed before statues of saints or at shrines. But how did this tradition get its start?

    According to A Handbook of Catholic Sacramentals, by Ann Ball, the practice of lighting candles in order to obtain some favor probably has its origins in the custom of burning lights at the tombs of the martyrs in the catacombs. The lights burned as a sign of solidarity with Christians still on earth. Because the lights continually burned as a silent vigil, they became known as vigil lights. Vigil Lights (from the Latin vigilia, which means "waiting" or "watching") are traditionally accompanied by prayers of attention or waiting. Another common type of candle offering is the votive light. Such an offering is indicative of seeking some favor from the Lord or the saint before which the votive is placed. So for us lighting a candle is a way of extending our prayer and showing solidarity with the person on whose behalf our prayer is offered.

    Amazing altar piece. Beautiful leaded light in the church. Iris is having fun.
    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Religious Travel
    • Architecture

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    Mairie de Saint Hilaire de Riez - Neo-Gothic style

    by Jerelis Written Apr 20, 2011

    The origin of the village of Saint Hilaire de Riez can be traced from as long ago as the 4th century, turning it into one of the most ancient spots of the region. There are many different ancient spots to explore within this town, as well as the general appearance of it is rewarding by itself due to its charming houses and buildings. A lot has changed since the old times, but still some is presented in the same way as many hundred years ago. Saint Hilaire de Riez doesn't have a rich cultural heritage, but does have long traditions and customs that are kept alive.

    One of the buildings which strikes the eye immediately is the neo-Gothic Parish Church: Mairie de Saint Hilaire de Riez. Even when you arrive at the church from the backside and not the front you'll see that the mighty church tower of the Parish Church ranks among the other buildings in the village. Dedicated to Saint Hilaire, the Bishop of Poiters, who converted the region to Christianity, the original church was built in 1025. Its location was about the same as today’s church and it adjoined a priory. This beautiful Church of Saint Hilaire de Riez is an attractive example of the neo-Gothic style, with its triangular arches and ribbed vaults, and the symmetry and regularity of its stonework.

    Facing the main square. View at the beautiful church. Tower of the 14th century church.
    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Religious Travel
    • Archeology

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Saint-Hilaire-de-Riez Things to Do

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