The Isle of Noirmoutier

Anne-Marie takes us first to the Plage des Dames (The Ladies' Beach), one of the earliest "tourist attractions" in France.  Tourism as we know it was born in the 1800's with the growth of the railroad.  Once travel became industrialized and available to masses of newly prosperous entrepreneurs, places like this became accessible and affordable.  This "Ladies' Beach" was the destination of many a well-to-do woman on 19th-century France.  While the women came here, the men engaged in numerous other activities available on the island -- fishing, boating, sport of all sort.  I might note that one explanation for the name of this beach goes back much further than the 1800's.  Some say that in the darkest pre-history this beach was the meeting place of witches who came here to celebrate their magic and to hone their skills in their Celtic arts.
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This page last updated on 6/3/2003 7:06:50 PM.