More about NANTES - SAINT NAZAIRE

NANTES and SAINT NAZAIRE

Our main dedicated cruise terminal, located in Nantes city centre is the natural gateway to the Loire Valley Castles, Guérande Medieval city or Muscadet vineyard.
The cruise guests will also enjoy historical Nantes: a city of Arts, History and Shopping!

Two terminals are also available in Saint-Nazaire (close to high sea) and Montoir de Bretagne (in the heart of port operations).

Visit the Loire Valley and its unforgettable fairytales Castles:
With the achievement of the motorway, prestigious castles are reachable in no more than 2 hours from the Pier.
Do not miss Fontevraud, Azay-le-Rideau, Chambord or Villandry and its gardens.

Re-opening of the Château des Ducs de Bretagne:
A fter 15 years of renovation, the Bretons Dukes Castle re-opened to the public at the beginning of 2007 - Set in the historic heart of Nantes, once a colonial and industrial port and now one of the most important urban centres in Western France, this exceptional site is the flagship of the city's urban heritage and its oldest historic building besides the Cathedral.

Machines of ILE DE NANTES:
The attraction `Machines of Ile de Nantes’ is both a laboratory and an exhibition hall where machinists bring to life and tell the story of fabulous dream machines as a giant elephant weighting in at 40 tons and 12 m high (can carry up to 30 passengers on trips along the river).

Other highlights

  • The gothic cathedral of St. Pierre (1434).

  • Beautiful 18th century stone mansions with wrought iron balconies in the port area.

  • The Musée des Beaux-Arts displaying paitings by Monet, de la Tour, Delacroix.

  • The house of the world famous Jules Verne, author of Around the World in Eighty Days and 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.

  • The 19th century Passage Pommeraye covered arcade.

  • The Galeries Lafayette department store ideally located to spend a few hours shopping.

  • The unique art nouveau restaurant La Cigale (1895), facing the Graslin theatre.

  • The Jardin des Plantes, hosting a variety of camelias and magnolias, brought back from great expeditions in the 18th century.

The gateway to the Loire Valley

Nantes is at the mouth of the river Loire, the longest of France. Long cherished by the kings of France, the royal river is today the link between the port and unique destinations: Château de Chambord & the Loire Valley, both inscribed on UNESCO World Heritage List, the Loire Valley vineyard, the Audubon bog, Paris and much more...
The Nantes destinations also include 7 golf clubs, 5 Relais & Châteaux and 13 Michelin star restaurants.

Nantes Port of Call

A dedicated cruise terminal is waiting for you in city centre.
Nantes was the leading port of the 18th c. It thrived thanks to a triangle-shaped trade of slaves with Africa & America. The port area luxury mansions, displaying sculpted macaroons & wrought iron balconies, are a reminder of these times. During the French Revolution, massive drowning was held in the port area.
Today, classified "Ville d’Art et d’Histoire", the city has a reputation for religious tolerance (Edict of Nantes signed by King Henry IV in 1598).
Nantes is the birth place of Jules Verne & John James Audubon. Jules Verne grew up in the port area where he developed his passion for imaginary adventures.
Audubon's taste for bird-watching started on the banks of the river Loire.

Beauties of Nantes

The most beautiful monuments of Nantes are the superb Gothic Flamboyant St Cathedral Pierre (started in 1434), and the fortified medieval château of the Dukes of Brittany, where Queen Anne of Brittany was born in 1477. The cathedral shelters the Duke's recumbent statue, a marble masterpiece. He is buried there with his two wives.
Cobblestone street lead to the medieval district, filled with boutiques of all kind.
Parks and greenhouses host collections of camelias and magniolias, brought back from great expeditions of the 18th c.
The fine-arts museum displays paintings by major artists of the 17th and 18th c (Rubens, de la Tour, Watteau…), of the 19th c (Delacroix, Courbet) and 20th c (Kandinsky).

Loire Valley Wines & Gourmet Cuisine

Nantes grows wine right outside its limits.
Let’s take time to taste our white, slightly sparkling and so refreshing Muscadet in the charming village of Clisson! It will accompany perfectly our local specialities, seafood and Beurre-Blanc fish! Sugar cane imports in the port of Nantes since the 18th c boosted candy & biscuit production. LU is the most renowned brand (see vintage posters collection at Château de Goulaine), together with Berlingots & Rigolettes sweets.
Come & discover the former LU factory fancy tower or mingle up with Nantais at the popular Market of Talensac for your own cooking purchases!