Fouras-les-Bains more commonly called Fouras is a small town located on the south-west of France, in the Charente-Maritime department, between La Rochelle and Rochefort, on a small peninsula.
Fouras is not a so popular tourist destination, which is very nice if you want to spend a quiet holiday. There are nice small beaches, a walking street with shops selling local products, a morning market, a casino, and a beachfront with good restaurants.
But Fouras is more known for the Vauban fortress, Fort Boyard, and Aix island.
Vauban fortress was initially a strategic fortification established by Philippe le Bel, circa 1300. The donjon was rebuilt in 1480-1490 by Jehan II de Brosse. In 1689, Ferry reinforced the walls of the Donjon to set up a battery of 9 canons and a signaling point. In 1693 a lower circular battery was set up to control access to the Charente River. The donjon received a signal station from 1889 to World War II.
Boyard fortress is maybe the most known because of the TV game show and it’s very close to Aix island. The easiest way to access Aix island is from Fouras at the “Pointe de la Fumée”.
More information about Fouras-les-Bains: www.fouras.net
Where to stay?
There are different types of hotels in Fouras but if you want to enjoy the beachfront, the restaurants and the beaches, choose one close to the center of the town.
I stayed at the Grand Hôtel des Bains which is located downtown, a hundred meters from the beach and surrounded by small shops and good restaurants, and with a good rating on Booking.com.
This hotel offers a safe parking hall (not free), a bar, a nice patio, a spa with an indoor swimming pool, a sauna and a hammam, and nice cozy rooms. The room where we stayed was very comfortable and located on the street side. It included a small LCD TV, a safe, a kettle with coffee and tea facilities, complimentary bottles of water, and a nice bathroom with a shower.
They don’t have a restaurant but it’s not a problem, there are a couple in the same street and if you walk 5 minutes to the beachfront you will have more choice. The breakfast was very good, they had a small buffet full of fresh and local products.