Categorized | Charente Maritime, Les Bois, Les Charmettes, Vendee

French theme parks that ‘Disney’ rely on Mickey

Posted on 24 March 2010 by Dan Johnson

Disneyland Paris remains France’s most popular theme park, but if you want something other than huge queues and fairytale castles, there are other attractions that offer a typically French slice of family fun.

Science park Futuroscope and history-themed park Puy du Fou are both located on France’s west coast, where the big beaches, friendly seaside towns and activity-packed holiday parcs make for an ideal family holiday destination.

Puy du Fou
If you want a noisy, smoky, live spectacular that will bring your children’s history lessons to life, then step back in time at Puy du Fou in the Vendée where, in one afternoon, you can experience a Roman circus, Viking longboats and an 18th century village.

Puy du Fou is essentially a series of live historical shows dedicated to 2,000 years of French history. You can watch gladiators battle, Vikings loot and, in a new show for 2010, armies lay siege.

There are performances of falconry, jousting, magic and music, and the park explodes into life during the evenings when a thousand local volunteers perform a historical sound and music extravaganza on what they claim is the world’s largest stage.

Siblu’s four-star Le Bois Masson holiday parc, in the coastal resort of St-Jean-de-Monts, is within a short drive of Grand Parc Puy du Fou. A two-bedroom holiday home starts from as little as £725 for two adults and up to three children staying for 7-nights, based on a 17 July departure. Puy du Fou tickets start from €27 for adults and €17 for children.

Futuroscope
Futuroscope in Poitiers, in the Poitou Charente region of west France, is the country’s second most popular theme park.

There are a series of giant Imax cinemas that broadcast awe-inspiring films which include an interactive safari to see the animals of the future, the legendary Apollo 11 moon flight as viewed by a fly on the wall, and, in a new show for 2010, take viewers on an incredible 4D-adventure created by renowned film director Luc Besson.

There are many other attractions, including giant robot arms that dance with their occupants, and a light show blasted onto water.

Siblu’s Les Charmettes holiday parc is located at La Palmyre in Charente Maritime, within easy reach of Futuroscope. A 7-night stay at the four-star parc starts from £921 for two adults and three children staying in holiday home accommodation, based on a 17 July start date. Tickets for Futuroscope start from €35 for adults and €26 for children.

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8 Responses to “French theme parks that ‘Disney’ rely on Mickey”

  1. Dave says:

    Hi

    Never been to this part of France before and really looking forward to it, am taking the family to Le Bois Dormant at the end of August, really fancy taking the kids to Puy de Fou but have been put off by suggestions that it is quite a long drive and that it will be very, very busy….and having been to places like Legoland when you cannot get onto rides without queueing for hours I don’t really want to do all that !!

    Can anyone confirm the distance/time for the travel, whether it is likely to be incredibly busy and whether there are any deals available to reduce the costs?

    Also – what else is good to do in the area 1ith a 6 and 8 year old ?

    Thanks for all your help

    Dave

  2. admin says:

    Hi Dave, be sure to print off the Puy du Fou voucher on your pre-departure email which you will receive shortly before you travel.

    Also, for more ideas, take a look at our own guide to the Vendee in the Discover France section.

  3. S Dartnell says:

    Hi. I have been to vendee several times with my children.
    My tip is take the drive to La Palmyre zoo -
    La palmyre ( near Royan) vendee.
    Cheap to enter – but they sell bags of popcorn.
    All animal cages have signs re which ones
    You can feed popcorn to by hand. Magical! Kids love it!!

  4. Ross says:

    Hi,

    Puy du Fou is really good and I would thoroughly recommend it. It is not your usual theme park though as the attractions are the shows not rides. Check out their website.

    Regards,

    Ross.

  5. admin says:

    You can find the English version of the website at http://www.puydufou.com/en

  6. tina pollard says:

    Hi just back from lebois masson it is a faboulous site we visited le puy de voy it is brilliant for kids and adults the shows are brilliant especially the muskteer one. the only advice i would give you is take the headphones as all the shows are in french and if you have limited french the shows can be a bit hard to follow.St Jean de mont has plenty of things to do and see and the beach is lovely

  7. Dave says:

    Thanks to you all for top advice, really appreciate it!

  8. Dear Dave,
    Please note that Puy du Fou is located only 1h far from Le Bois Dormand.
    Our shows are free from queues: we adapt every day the number of shows according to the number of visitors. To organise your visit, do not forget that you can download on our website the visitor guide (shows and entertainments timetable) the day before your visit in the evening (this guide will also be available when you arrive at the Grand Parc).
    You’ll be ready to start your journey through time…
    Have a nice day at Puy du Fou!

    Adeline COUTAND
    PUY DU FOU


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