Corderie Royale - Rochefort

Rochefort: what to do, what to see...

35 minutes south of La Rochelle on the banks of the River Charente, Rochefort has always looked to the ocean, especially since the adventure of the frigate Hermione in the American War of Independence. And it was here in Rochefort that the vessel which carried General La Fayette to the New World in 1780 was publicly reconstructed. Any visit by the Hermione to our home port is always an unmissable event.

But what else should you definitely see, do and eat when you visit Rochefort?
Here are just a few things that you absolutely shouldn’t miss.

What to see

  • The Hermione
  • The transporter bridge
  • The Corderie Royale rope-making museum
  • The harbour
  • The Place Colbert (featured in Les Demoiselles de Rochefort)
  • The Church of Saint Louis
  • The Les Halles market

What to do

  • Visit the Maritime Museum
  • Take a night-time tour
  • Enjoy a show at the La Coupe d’Or theatre
  • Play a round (or two) of golf
  • Take a walk in the Jardin des Retours gardens
  • Climb the ropes of the Accro-Mâts
  • Tour the world at the Musée Hèbre
  • ...and experience a 3D visit of Pierre Loti's house
  • Travel through time at the Musées des Commerces d’Autrefois museum of retailing
  • Visit the Naval Medical College
  • Visit the aerospace and naval museum
  • Visit the Conservatoire du Bégonia botanical garden

And nearby:

  • Fort Boyard
  • The Île Madame
  • The Île d’Aix
  • Fort Lupin
  • Fort de la Pointe
  • Fouras

What to eat & drink

  • Charente melons
  • Mogette white beans
  • Salt marsh lamb
  • Jonchée fresh cheese from the salt marshes
  • Sea salt
  • Samphire
  • An éclade of mussels
  • Grillon Charentais paté
  • Grattons (dried and compressed pork, goose, chicken or duck fat)
  • Farcis Charentais stuffing
  • A chowder
  • Eel bouilliture (stewed with red wine and prunes) or matelote (stewed with red or white wine and aromatic flavourings)
  • Fried céteaux (wedge sole)
  • A Douzane plaited brioche (on Palm Sunday)
  • Broad bean soup
  • Charentes-Poitou butter
  • Caillebotte curd cheese
  • Galette de Beurlay (galette charentaise) cake

What to bring back

  • Biscuits
  • Pineau des Charentes
  • Cognac
  • A cake
  • Salt
  • Chocolates Yves Thuriès (Meilleur Ouvrier de France)

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