Everything you need to know about shore fishing in the Vendée

Noirmoutier-en-l'Île
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Fishing on foot is a typical activity of the Vendée. We explain why, how it happens and where to practice it.

Shore fishing has been practiced in Vendée since the dawn of time. Normal, it is a significant food resource on the coast. Today, the molluscs we eat are raised by oyster farmers. It has therefore become a hobby, very popular with families. We tell you all about shore fishing in the Vendée, to prepare your next trips.


Photos of the article © Guide de la Vendée


Fishing on foot in the Vendée

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What is shore fishing?

Shore fishing involves collecting shells, fixed on rocks or buried in the sand, but also fishing for shrimp trapped in puddles that appear when the sea recedes at low tide. The goal is to harvest cockles, clams, tellines, mussels, oysters, scallops, periwinkles, razor clams, sea urchins, shrimps… It's up to you to choose what you prefer!

Some gourmets practice it to taste good seafood, freshly caught. Hikers embellish their walks along the beautiful Vendée beaches with a fishing session. For others, it is an educational and family activity, which allows children to show shellfish and make them want to taste the culinary specialties of the Vendée afterwards.


Fishing on foot in the Vendée

Good shore fishing practices

You can fish on foot all year round, except for abalone, scallops and sea urchins, and subject to good weather. Indeed, it is an activity that can take time, especially with the family. So it is better to check that the rain does not invite itself in the middle of your fishing, otherwise you will come back empty-handed and the children disappointed... Insiders will tell you that fishing can be miraculous during high tides, with coefficients greater than 90… In any case, do not hesitate to find out about the tides beforehand because the sea can rise very quickly and trap you!


Fishing on foot in the Vendée
Watch out for the tide!

Also remember to equip yourself correctly. A pair of boots is very practical to avoid soaking your feet in a water hole. At least take good shoes for walking on steep or slippery rocks. A waterproof jacket can be useful if it is windy to protect you from the spray. Sunglasses, a hat, and sunscreen are essential for children, as the reverberation is strong. Do not forget your cell phone to call for help or to find yourself. Gloves are sometimes necessary to avoid injuring yourself with the seashells.

In terms of equipment, you can buy a small fishing kit for a few euros. You will also need a knife to unhook the shells and a basket if you are looking for shells or a bucket if you are fishing for shrimp. If you don't go for the ready-made kit, all you need is a small shovel, scraper or spoon to dig up some shellfish that burrow in the sand and a landing net for the shrimp. Above all, you need to buy a fishing rod. It allows you to measure the size of your catch.


Fishing on foot in the Vendée
Equipping yourself well is important

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While shore fishing is a very pleasant hobby, certain rules must nevertheless be observed to preserve the environment, flora and fauna . Some species are protected during the breeding season. You must check the size of the shells so as not to take specimens that are too young. If you move algae or stones, remember to put them back in their original place. The list of usable equipment is also provided to avoid damage to the natural environment. To find out the regulations in force, consult the site of recreational shore fishing in the Vendée (fr).


Fishing on foot in the Vendée

The best fishing spots on foot

In the Marais Breton Vendéen, at the edge of the beaches or on the rocks of the coast, there are numerous shore fishing areas in the Vendée. Here are the most famous spots:

  • Around Noirmoutier Island: Passage du Gois or the surroundings of the bridge and La Fromentine.
  • In Saint-Jean-de-Monts: Davière beach.
  • The large beach of Saint-Gilles-Croix-de-Vie.
  • The beaches of Brétignolles-sur-Mer.
  • Between Les Sables d'Olonne and Talmont-Saint-Hilaire: Veillon beach.
  • Around Jard-sur-Mer: the beaches of Ragounite, Bouil, Rocher and Conches...
  • The tip of the Grouin du Cou in La Tranche-sur-Mer.

Of course, there are others, but the Vendeans will rarely reveal their good spots to you… In any case, do not fish near oyster sites. Also pay attention to the displays at the edge of the beaches. Occasionally certain places are prohibited, because of toxic algae which can invade an area. Otherwise, remember to visit the ARS website (fr) from time to time.


Fishing on foot in the Vendée

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You are now ready to go fishing on foot in Vendée. We wish you beautiful walks and good fishing!


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