Spend the afternoon enhancing your tan on La Rochelle’s largest beach, before viewing the lavish yachts in the port.
Minimes Beach is a charming stretch of sand in an area of upscale boutiques and restaurants. Scattered along the beach are many bathing stations complete with showers and other amenities to make your afternoon more comfortable. Find a nice patch of sand for you and your family to enjoy a French picnic of baguettes, cheese and wine.
Spot the famous Lighthouse at the End of the World in the ocean. The wooden octagonal structure is an identical replica of a 19th-century version in Patagonia. Admire its quaint design, appearing like a hut rising from the Bay of Biscay. Relax on the sand with the panoramic view of the lighthouse and sparkling blue ocean water.
Several patches of sand are designated for sports. Watch the crowds playing volleyball and soccer on the wide area of sand. Join the beach sports and then cool down with a dip in the Atlantic Ocean.
Visit the range of boutiques that face the beach and look for French celebrities who like to be seen in this glamorous area. Enjoy the region’s hot summers and get your tan going. Go beachcombing with your kids to find shells and other lost treasures washed up on the shore. Stay for the sunset, which descends over the horizon.
The adjacent port is a remarkably large hub of yachts. Walk down its piers and imagine yourself the owner of some of these impressive vessels. Capture photos of the extraordinary boats on display.
Minimes Beach is roughly 3 miles (5 kilometers) southwest of La Rochelle’s town center. Take a bus past the nearby attractions of the Maritime Museum, the Parc des Pères and the Sole Lake to reach the beach. Alternatively, find one of the “vélo jaune” bike rental stations around the city and cycle to your destination. You can also take a water taxi from the Old Port.