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France, Vendée (85), Les Herbiers, Abbaye de la Grainetière fondée en 1130 (vue aérienne) ©F. Leroy/hemis.fr

France, Vendée (85), Les Epesses, parc d'attractions et de loisirs du Puy du Fou, spectacle nocturne Cinéscénie ©P. Blanchot/hemis.fr

France, Vendée (85), Les Epesses, Parc du Puy du Fou, le village 1900 ©F. Leroy/hemis.fr

France, Vendée (85), Les Epesses, Parc du Puy du Fou, le village 1900

France, Vendée (85), Les Epesses, Parc du Puy du Fou, le village médiéval ©F. Leroy/hemis.fr

France, Vendée (85), Les Epesses, Parc du Puy du Fou, le village médiéval

Pays de la Loire

Exploring Puy du Fou and the windmills of Vendée

Exploring Puy du Fou and the windmills of Vendée

  • Culture & Heritage
  • With the family

In an immense wooded area of 55 hectares, the centuries have merged to give birth to Puy du Fou. Without any real historical concern, but with real artistic talent, circus games, Viking attacks, jousting between knights or musketeers crossing swords are all staged. Here, the shows will immerse you in continuous wonder during this unforgettable journey through time.

After two days in the park, it’s time to take the route des Moulins to explore the pays des Herbiers.

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Le Puy du Fou Le Puy du Fou

Day 1 - Le Puy du Fou

Upon your arrival at the Puy du Fou theme park, go to the information point located at the Bourg 1900 station. To organize your visit to the Grand Parc around the show schedules, check the daily brochure given visitors. And note that a small train, La Colporteuse, available for the elderly, disabled and others, takes you to the entrance of the Grand Park to the Medieval City.

Start at the Grand Parc to watch some shows. The Dernier Panache takes follows Charette, a young naval officer from the American War of Inependence through to the Vendée wars. Next, follow the Vikings show, during which a huge 20-metre longship appears from the water.
After lunch, enjoy more of the Grand Parc by watching the Musketeers of Richelieu under the Grand Carrousel, a huge covered stage of 2600 m2!
You can enjoy your afternoon with a walk in the Medieval City before going to your first evening show: Cinescénie.

MyTripTailor Tip: The programme is scheduled daily depending on visitor numbers to avoid queues. Plan to spend the night in one of the park’s themed hotels so you can watch the shows.

Day 2 - Le Puy du Fou

After a good breakfast, go and explore the fort de l’an Mil. Surrounded by wooden palisades and moats, the village seems safe from attack. Here, the artisans take advantage of quiet periods to showcase their know-how, ensconced in their sloping thatched roof stone houses.
You can spend the morning here and, after lunch, take a walk through the 18th century village. It’s an inviting place for a stroll, with its pretty mill, its welcoming coaching inn and its numerous craftsmen (potters, cabinet makers, blacksmiths, clog makers) who will help you to discover the different aspects of their trades. Around the washhouse, stands a huge 16m high carillon. At each performance, this original and spectacular structure deploys its 80 bells.

If your schedule permits, take a trip back in time to Bourg 1900. This charming reconstruction of a Belle Époque trading district, with its market, its enticing displays and its bistro, plunges you back a century.
Now is the time to go to your second evening show: the Orgues de Feu. Every evening a violinist muse appears, madly in love with a pianist. Very poetic!
You will spend your second night on site before leaving the park to take the road to La Chabotterie the next morning

MyTripTailor tip: The whole park will appeal to children. But some events are more suitable for the younger ones, like the Knights of the Round Table, the Imaginary World of La Fontaine or the Renaissance of the Castle.

Day 3 - La route des moulins

Located in the heart of a beautiful region of quiet valleys dotted with groves and hedgerows of ash, oak and chestnut, the small town of Herbiers makes an ideal starting point for a stroll to discover the windmills of Vendee.

The pleasant village of Mesnard-la-Barotière hides an unsuspected treasure in the heart of its 11th century church: an exceptional collection of 13th century wall paintings, discovered by chance in 1950 in the chancel when the building had become a barn.

After a walk in the Bois-Verts forest, explore the Abbaye Notre-Dame-de-la-Grainetière. Located on the edge of the Soubise Forest, the abbey was established in 1130 by Benedictines from the monastery of Fontdouce near Saintes.


Finally, head in the direction of Mont des Alouettes. The site (231m high) takes its name from the bronze larks which adorned the helmets of Gallic Legionnaires of the Roman army who once camped in these places. You can also visit the windmill which is still in operation.

Mytriptailor advice: allow the whole day to follow the entire route des Moulins and stop to picnic in the Bois-Verts forest.

  • Distance : 91 km
  • Duration : 1h52

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