Marans travel guide

Photo of Marans

Visit Marans (Nouvelle-Aquitaine, France)

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Marans is a town to the north-east of La Rochelle, in the Poitou-Charentes region of western France. The town has quite a busy road passing through it, and the temptation is to continue on your way. But I suggest you stop a while, because there are a couple of interesting attractions to explore slightly away from the main road.

Explore Marans

We came across Marans by chance, attracted by the sign saying they had been awarded 'Four Flowers' by the national Village Fleuri' association (not many towns have achieved this), and because we saw a sign mentioning a 'Jardin des Plantes'.

Street in Marans

I am a keen garden enthusiast and was not disappointed - the garden in front of the Mairie is superb, and free to visit!

The main attraction in the town of Marans is the pleasant river port containing small river craft and yachts, where you can also stroll along the river bank, or hire a boat to explore the canals and waterways of the Marais Poitevin.

The wharf area has attractive houses along its sides as well as several cafes and restaurants, and makes for a pleasant place to break your journey if you are passing through, as many people do, on the way to the Ile de Ré.


On exploring further in the town centre, there is a church whose steeple can be seen throughout the town and is unusual in that it is made of steel, with the lower part encased in glass and the upper part left exposed. It's really very unusual for a church and works very well.

Apparently the original church was considered to be too far from the town centre so the replacement (the church of Notre Dame) was constructed in 1900. Funds ran out before the steeple was built, but a local lad who had seen the original church built, then later made his fortune in Paris, gave the funds (when he was 93 years old) to build the modern steeple.

There is also a 'panoramic hall' in the steeple with great views across the town and the Marais Poitevin that lies to the east of Marans.

Marans is a ville fleurie

Another monument worth seeing in Marans is the covered market, built in 1882, an impressive glass and ironwork structure.

Note: I am not an angler but understand Marans is a very popular place with fishermen.

You can find more travel ideas in the Charente-Maritime guide and the Poitou-Charentes guide.

See also Find Marans hotels

Photos of Marans

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Map of Marans and places nearby


Visit near Marans with France This Way reviews

Maillezais abbey

Maillezais abbey

The ruins of the Maillezais abbey are on the edge of the marshes of the Marais Poitevin

Maillezais abbey guide
La Rochelle

La Rochelle

The historic town and monuments and the vibrant harbour area make La Rochelle one of our favourite towns in France

La Rochelle guide
La Rochelle towers

La Rochelle towers

These three fortress towers protect the entrance to the harbour in La Rochelle

La Rochelle towers guide
La Rochelle harbour

La Rochelle harbour

The harbour area in La Rochelle is the liveliest part of the town, with numerous restaurants, street entertainers, artists and the aquarium

La Rochelle harbour guide
La Rochelle Natural History Museum

La Rochelle Natural History Museum

The Natural History Museum in La Rochelle contains an eclectic mix of items collected by 19th century explorers

La Rochelle Natural History Museum guide
La Rochelle aquarium

La Rochelle aquarium

The aquarium in La Rochelle features various parts, including a shark tank and many colourful sea creatures

La Rochelle aquarium guide

... or see ALL recommended places to visit in Charente-Maritime

Tourist classifications for Marans

Marans is classified as a village in bloom (ville fleurie) 4*

Address: Marans, Rochelle, Poitou-Charentes, 17230, France || GPS coordinates: latitude 46.3092, longitude -0.991389

Plan your visit to Marans, Charente-Maritime

Sightseeing & tourist attractions to visit nearby

  • Baie de l'Aiguillon: site of natural beauty (13 km)
  • Eglise de Notre-Dame de l'Assomption (Maille): religious monument (16 km)
  • Forêt de Benon: site of natural beauty (20 km)
  • Abbaye Saint Pierre et Eglise de Saint Nicolas (Maillezais): religious monument (21 km)
  • La Rochelle: secteur sauvegarde (21 km)
  • Aquarium de La Rochelle: aquarium (21 km)
  • Fontenay-le-Comte: recommended detour (22 km)
  • Marais Poitevin: grand site of france (25 km)
  • Abbaye Royale (Nieul-sur-l'Autise): religious monument (27 km)
  • Jardins du Bâtiment: remarkable garden (27 km)
  • La Flotte-en-Re: most beautiful village (29 km)
  • Natur'Zoo de Mervent: zoo or wildlife park (29 km)

Market days in Marans, France

Regular market(s) are held in Marans each Tuesday. (Markets are held in the morning unless stated.)

The French version of this page is at Marans (Francais)