Fort Boyard

Known all over the world thanks to the TV game show that takes place there, Fort Boyard is above all an astonishing monument built in the middle of the sea between the island of Aix and the island of Oléron, which feeds the imagination as much as it fascinates. If you dream of approaching the fort Boyard during your camping vacations in Charente-Maritime, here is all the information you will need…

Fort Boyard and its incredible second life

The idea of a fort to protect the Rochefort arsenal was born in the 17th century, an idea that was quickly abandoned until the early 19th century. The first works began in 1803, with the creation of Boyardville where the workers settled. However, the difficulties linked to its construction on a sand bank prevented the work from progressing and it was regularly suspended.

voir fort boyard

The construction of the fort did not really begin until 1841. Its dimensions are impressive: 68 m long and 31 m wide, with 20 m high walls. Unfortunately, there were many problems, especially concerning supplies. When the work officially ended in 1866, the fort was already useless. It became the “fort of the useless”. During the second part of the 19th century, it was used as a prison but the French army finally abandoned it in 1913.

In 1950, it was classified as a historical monument. A television production company acquired it in 1988 and immediately returned it to the Charente-Maritime General Council. In the 1990s, it was used for the television game show “Les Clés de Fort Boyard” which later became “Fort Boyard”. The show was a success and was exported to nearly 70 countries, making Fort Boyard and Charente-Maritime known throughout the world.

How to visit Fort Boyard?

Fans of “Fort Boyard” will be disappointed: the fort cannot be visited. The company Adventure Line Productions holds the exclusive rights. Sometimes bloggers are invited and contests are organized by the department, inviting families to visit the fort on a specific date. Do not hesitate to check the official website of tourism in Charente.

To admire the fort up close during your vacation in Charente-Maritime, the best solution is a cruise. Several companies offer cruises approaching the fort from Boyardville on the island of Oleron, Port-des-Barques, Fouras and La Tremblade on the mainland. Some of them are commented. There is usually a choice between a tour of Fort Boyard and a one-day cruise with a stopover on the island of Aix.

croisiere fort boyard charente maritime

Rates and practical information

Getting to the fort from La Tremblade

Near for a cruise around the fort Boyard ? From the Eldapi Vacances campsites, you can take a boat to La Tremblade with the Croisières Alizé company. 

The boat leaves in the early morning, passes in front of the oyster beds, goes around the fort and stops for 5 to 7 hours on the island of Aix before returning in the late afternoon. It is advisable to make reservations as there is only one departure per day. 

The price is 27 € per adult, 19 € for children from 4 to 12 years old and 8 € for children under 4 years old.

Getting to the fort from Port des Barques

Departing from Port-des-Barques, about 40 kilometers north of Saint-Augustin, the Croisières Fourasines company offers 2 types of cruises:

  • a short cruise of 1h30 to go around Fort Boyard proposed at 13 € per adult, 10 € for children from 4 to 12 years old and 5 € for children under 4 years old (children under 2 years old do not pay) ;
  • a one-day cruise with a stopover on the island of Aix at respectively 26 €, 20 € or 10 € depending on age.

How to get to the fort from the island of Oleron

If you plan to visit the island of Oleron, you can also take a tour of the fort from Boyardville. Count between 19 € and 4 € per person. Departures are frequent. Cruises by sailboat or catamaran are also available, especially from Fouras.

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