Nieul-sur-l'Autise, Vendee tourism & sightseeing

Photo of Nieul-sur-l'Autise (Pays de la Loire region)

Visit Nieul-sur-l'Autise (Pays de la Loire, France)

Nieul-sur-l'Autise is a village at the southernmost edge of the Vendée department near the border with Poitou-Charentes (south of Vouvant and south-east of Fontenay-le-Comte).

Exploring Nieul-Sur-l'Autise

Sights of note in Nieul-sur-l'Autise - classified as a 'Petite Cite de Caractere' - include a watermill, now a functioning watermill where you can watch flour being ground using traditional machinery and some traditional houses around the central square in the village (opposite the abbey entrance) but most visitors come to the village to see the Abbey.

Abbey of Saint Vincent

The Abbey of Saint Vincent was established here in the 11th century. The abbey subsequently became designated a royal abbey by Eleanor of Aquitaine, who was born in Nieul in 1122.

The abbey church itself is roman in style and origins. The abbey underwent some restoration following damage during the Wars of Religion, had significant restoration work in the 19th century, and the clocktower, added much more recently, is rather less simple in design than we might expect of a roman church. Nonetheless the abbey and associated buildings are one of the most complete ensembles of roman buildings of their type to be found in France.

The abbey has various attractive features such as carvings, sculptures and arches but for me it is the original romanesque cloisters that are the highlight, with their great multi-columned pillars and calm reflective arcades.

Close to Nieul-Sur-l'Autise

The remains of a neolithic camp are also to be found at Nieul-sur-l'Autise - Le Camp Durand - with defensive ditches dating back to prehistoric times.

Enthusiast of religious monuments will also want to visit Maillezais Abbey, just a few kilometres to the south-west of Nieul-sur-l'Autise. Visitors will also enjoy a stroll around the historic centre and along the river in Fontenay-le-Comte.

Note: Photo by Lundeux details & copyright

You can find more travel ideas in the Vendee guide and the Pays de la Loire guide.

See also:

Map of Nieul-sur-l'Autise and places nearby

Visit near Nieul-sur-l'Autise with France This Way reviews

... or see ALL recommended places to visit in Vendee

Address: Nieul-sur-l'Autise, Saint-Hilaire-des-Loges, Fontenay-le-Comte, Pays de la Loire, 85240, France || GPS: latitude 46.424, longitude -0.678

Plan your visit to Nieul-sur-l'Autise, Vendee

Sightseeing & tourist attractions to visit nearby

  • Abbaye Royale (Nieul-sur-l'Autise): religious monument
  • Abbaye Saint Pierre et Eglise de Saint Nicolas (Maillezais): religious monument (7 km)
  • Eglise de Saint-Eulalie (Benet): religious monument (9 km)
  • Marais Poitevin: grand site of france (10 km)
  • Fontenay-le-Comte: recommended detour (11 km)
  • Natur'Zoo de Mervent: zoo or wildlife park (11 km)
  • Eglise de Notre-Dame de l'Assomption (Maille): religious monument (12 km)
  • Coulon: most beautiful village (13 km)
  • Eglise de Notre-Dame (Vouvant): religious monument (18 km)
  • Vouvant: most beautiful village (18 km)
  • Baie de l'Aiguillon: site of natural beauty (18 km)
  • Forêt de Benon: site of natural beauty (26 km)

The French version of this page is at Nieul-sur-l'Autise (Francais)