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Published on :   23/12/2016

5 things to do in Nantes – Loire Valley

Nantes, the capital of western Loire is as one of France's best places to live.

A Loire River Cruise from Nantes is a unique opportunity to embark on a fascinating journey through breath-taking scenery in search of France’s most renowned cities. The historic centre of Nantes was revitalised in a buzzing creative centre in the Loire Valley. From there, you can dive into a region that has inspired painters, poets and writers who fell in love with the misty atmosphere of the Loire River. Legendary landscapes, "royal châteaux" and a trip to the heart of French history and culture await you.

Let's find out what Nantes has in store for us!


1. The Passage Pommeraye

The Passage Pommeraye is a small shopping mall in the centre of Nantes. Named after its property developper, Louis Pommeraye, it was built between 1840 and 1843. What makes this shopping arcade so special and worth a visit, are the neoclassical ornaments making up the rich decoration. There you will find big names in French fashion and culinary tradition.


2. Saint-Pierre and Saint-Paul Cathedral

The Pays de la Loire region in France has many architectural treasures and among them, there is the Nantes Cathedral or the Cathedral of St. Peter and St. Paul, a Gothic Roman Catholic cathedral in.


3. The Castle of the Dukes of Brittany

The last castle before the Loire river reaches the ocean, this is where Anne of Brittany grew up and married. It has been renovated and is now an impressive interactive museum of regional history, even touching on the slave trade in Brittany.


4. The "Voyage à Nantes"

Locals and tourists alike marvel at this yearly event launched in 2011. The "Voyage à Nantes" is a summer-long citywide cultural festival in the French city of Nantes. It comprises a multitude of events, an artistic and eccentric programme of site-specific works built around the city’s cultural and historical landmarks.


5. The "Machines de l'Île"

The “Machines de l’Île” project brings to live fantastic mechanical creatures in an industrial setting. They were all created , in the same workshop on the Île de Nantes, the three-mile-long island in the Loire, whose transformation from docklands to urban playground is part of the Nantes renaissance. Who would have thought that the best way to appreciate Nantes is from the top of an elephant!


Nantes is a fascinating innovative and lively city.

The once a busy seaport in the estuary of the Loire comprises many sites that reflect its capital of western Loire status.

Stay tuned to find out more about the Loire Valley and the many treasures you could discover on an exclusive Loire Cruise aboard our beautiful paddle rivership the MS Loire Princesse, a technical prowess, the only one of its kind in the world!