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Swimming in the Vendée

With over 200 kilometres of coastline and more rivers and lakes than practically any other department in France, there should be no reason why you cannot find somewhere to swim.  In addition to that it is a fact that most families seeking accommodation demand that it has a swimming pool. So whether you are camping, renting a Gite or cottage or staying at an hotel you will find that the vast majority either have a pool on site or are close to either the sea or another swimming alternative.
Of course swimming comes in several guises, from just splashing around for fun and to cool off on a sunny day, to sub-aqua. It takes in swimming for exercise, and teaching your children to swim, and it is surprising how many of us first learnt to swim on our summer holidays.

Below are a few suggestions of where you can swim, this can never be a comprehensive list, but it is a fair indication of the different types of places available.

The Sea. The 160 kilometres of sandy beaches which gently slope into the Atlantic ocean are an obvious example, but be warned the Atlantic rollers can cause strong under-currents, and it is always advisable to swim where there are life guards. Most of the major beaches have life guards during the main holiday season.
Surfing in all its forms is very popular and here in the Vendée there are excellent conditions for this fun sport.

Rivers. Though the Vendée has many rivers there are very few places where you can swim. The exception to this is where a river has been dammed and a barrage has been built making the water deep enough. Care should be however be taken nearer to the coast as the currents in the river are affected by the tides.

Lakes. There are many lakes where swimming is possible, most are the resort of dams or barrages such as those in the Mervent Forest or at Apremont. See lakes with beaches

Water parks. There are several water parks where you can have fun with water games and activities of all sorts. See water Parks

Municipal Swimming Pools. Most towns and some of the larger villages have swimming pools and most include water slides and other activities beside the main pool.

St Jean de Monts. Oceabul. Modern swimming pool complex with all the bells and whistles.

La Roche-sur-YonArmonia.   Indoor water complex including pools slides, fitness centre.
                             This is the smaller of the two pool complexes at La Roche

Arago.  Impasse Olympic. Tel. 02 51 05 58 55.
                 The larger of the two pool complexes at La Roche-sur-Yon.
                  It's facilities include:
                 3 pools, 2 waterslides, water cannon,50m walking river, 2 sauna, steam room,
                 whirlpool. For more detail see website.

Les HerbiersCape Verde.  Rue Pierre de Coubertin. Tel. 02 51 64 87 97.
                Impressive state of the art complex. Interior there is a large sports pool, Whirlpool, Jacuzzis, water slide fountain, while exterior there is a giant turbo slide, pool,  beach, cafe and relaxation area. See website for more details.

St.Giles Croix de Vie.  La Soudiniere, rue de la Rabalette. Tel. 02 51 55 10 46

Fontenay-le-Comte. Oceanide. Rue du Guingalet. Tel. 02 51 00 05 21
                               Modern complex with Toboggan & Sauna.

Les Sables d'Olonne. Remblai. Promenade Am Lafargue. Tel. 02 51 23 53 00.
                               Complex with Toboggan and Sauna.

Pouzauges. Rue Buffon. Tel.02 51 57 04 33

L'Hermenault. Ludique, Route Pouille. Tel.02 51 87 60 65.
                               Toboggan. Open air, open July/Aug

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