Île d’Yeu on the French Atlantic coast

Monday, 11 May 2020 - 11:00 am (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General

Port-Joinville © OT iledyeu/cc-by-sa-4.0

Port-Joinville © OT iledyeu/cc-by-sa-4.0

Île d’Yeu is an island and commune just off the Vendée coast of western France. The island’s two harbours, Port-Joinville in the north, and Port de la Meule, which itself is located in a rocky inlet of the southern granite coast, are famous for the fishing of tuna and lobster. Administratively, the commune of L’Île-d’Yeu is part of the Vendée department and the Pays de la Loire region of France. The island is reached by ferry from Fromentine or Saint-Gilles-Croix-de-Vie. Air transportation is available at Île d’Yeu Aerodrome, with commercial service from Nantes Airport.

Neolithic markings in the native stone and an unusual concentration of megalithic dolmens and menhirs attest to the island’s early sanctity. Irish monks from Bangor, County Down, dedicated their monastery on the Île d’Yeu to Hilaire; Saint Amand, from Poitou received early training there, but it was destroyed by Viking raiders in the ninth century.

Beach with the Old Castle in the background © OT iledyeu/cc-by-sa-4.0 Crows' Edge © OT iledyeu/cc-by-sa-4.0 Fir Tree Beach © OT iledyeu/cc-by-sa-4.0 La pointe du But © OT iledyeu/cc-by-sa-4.0 Port de la Meule © OT iledyeu/cc-by-sa-4.0 Port-Joinville © OT iledyeu/cc-by-sa-4.0
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Beach with the Old Castle in the background © OT iledyeu/cc-by-sa-4.0
During the tenth century, monks from Marmoutier near Tours and monks of Saint-Cyprien at Poitiers built a new monastery and dedicated it to Saint Stephen. The castle built on an islet linked to the coast by a bridge is first mentioned in 1356. Since the nineteenth century Île d’Yeu has attracted many artists. Jean Rigaud (1912–1999), official painter to the French Navy, had a house there, as did Maurice Boitel (1919–2007). Jean Dufy (1888-1964) made about twenty paintings of l’Ile d’Yeu during several summer stays between 1926 and 1930.

Philippe Pétain, the proclaimed hero of Verdun during World War I who later became the leader of France’s wartime collaborationist Vichy régime, was sentenced to life imprisonment for treason on Île d’Yeu. He died in a private home in Port-Joinville in 1951 and is buried in the local cemetery (Cimetière communal de Port-Joinville). The poet Marc-Adolphe Guégan, an early French exponent of haiku, lived on the island until his death in 1959. The island’s seaweeds have been the subject of studies by the French marine biologist Françoise Ardré.

Read more on Île d’Yeu Tourism, france.fr – Île d’Yeu, vendee-tourism.co.uk – Île d’Yeu and Wikipedia Île d’Yeu (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State - Weather report by weather.com). Photos by Wikimedia Commons. If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.




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