We have just returned after two weeks on the site with friends who rented a cabin straight from the site.
We had a wonderful time but do recognise the faults expressed by earlier reviewers - the site has the feel of a French 3 star rather than the 4 it has but it is so close to being spot on.
The team at the Reception were incredibly helpful including sorting us out with tickets for Puy du Fou.
The town is quiet but the Lidl served most of our needs alongside the market which takes place twice a week.
The site is large with the vast majority of pitches mobile rental units and all of the tourers at the back of the site. This suited us fine as our teenagers spent most of their time at the sports complex with their friends. The downside of it is the fact that the bins are emptied every night between midnight and one am. for more than twenty minutes. We did suffer some late night noise on site although I suspect that it was people on their last nights who were not concerned about site rules. The main noise comes from the entertainments at the neighbouring camp site.
During the first week we were mainly surrounded by French families which suited us really well but there appeared to be a bit of a shift in the clientèle and booking policy. Our later neighbours were two families with six kids on one pitch who were intrusive purely by the sheer number of them.
So a good three star site with nearby access to decent beaches but as a family who like the Vendee region there are better sites in the vicinity.
We booked a week at Le Chaponnet at relatively short notice (6 weeks) and managed to secure the last available pitch for a week.
There were good and bad parts to the site:
The noise curfew at 11. 30 is only obeyed by the site bar - most nights there were groups of very loud French teenagers moving around the site anything up to 2am. At one point, there was a party going on with loud music playing until 2. 30am and no-one did anything to stop it.
The shouts/screams/chants/singing from the groups were so loud that even earplugs (we always take them as our tent is a little noisy in the wind) wouldn't block it out.
As this is marketed as a family site, this was a real disappointment and means we cannot recommend this site to families with younger children.
Also, if you are arriving after 7pm, your welcome pack (a brochure with your pitch number written on it) will be left with the bar staff (who aren't employed by the campsite) so you will be left to find your own way to the pitch.
This in itself isn't a big problem, but not being supplied with a key to the drive gate was. In the end, the barman reluctantly agreed to get his key from his car and let us in. The reason for this is that the reception staff require a €20 deposit, so cannot give you the key if they are not there.
The pools are nice, with the indoor and outdoor pools being nicely heated. The splash pool for the slide isn't heated, but as you don't spend a lot of time in it, it doesn't pose a problem. There were a few issues with late-teens doing daft things on the slides, but these were quickly stopped by the pool attendant. Towels-on-sunbed reserving seems to be the norm, so get there for 10am when the pool opens if you want a sunbed.
The pitch itself was a good size, with plenty of room for our 8-person tunnel tent, and car. Electric hookup was fine (6A) and we had a water supply on our pitch, which was good.
The shower/toilet blocks were kept clean, and hot showers were free and a good temperature. Individual sink cubicles with mirrors, shaving points and doors were also a nice touch.
The bar does pizzas/chips/crepes/galettes for reasonable - though not cheap - prices, and the bar prices are ok.
Shopping-wise, the site provides baguettes/croissants but nothing else. However, the town is only a 5-min walk away, with a very nice restaurant, bakery, butcher and newsagent.
On one side of the town there is a little amusement place which has a grocery shop (oddly, the only place to get fresh (non-UHT) milk) and there is a Lidl about the same distance the other way, which is very cheap and has an on site bakery for croissants/pain-au-chocolat etc (1/3rd the price of the site bar). Lidl also do a reasonable red wine at €1. 35 a bottle and Normandy cider at the same price!
The beach is walkable, but there is a free carpark 100yds from the beach, and a shuttle service from the campsite. It's a really nice beach with good waves. Down by the sea itself it's a bit stony, so wetsuit shoes (or similar) are a good idea if you fancy a swim or a paddle.
Le Grand Defi is about 10 mins drive away and great if you have active kids - lots of skywalks, zipwires etc. €16 for over 12s, less for younger kids, and if parents are happy to following them on the ground there is no cost. You are meant to have 3hrs for your money, but no-one checks and we stayed there for most of the day. Take a packed lunch though as the queue for the snack bar was horrendous.
In conclusion, if it weren't for the complete disregard of the noise curfew, this would be a nice site. We will definitely be coming back to the area as we loved it, just not to this site.
I have just spent 10 days with my 10 year old twins at this site and had a great time.
There are lots of things to do with the children ranging from on site facilities to the local beaches and many 'activities' - mine were intereted in the go-karting and shell museum!
The site had large pitches but beware if, like me, you are towing a twin wheel caravan as the pathways are very narrow and it was impossible to reverse the van directly onto our pitch. Fortunately we had some very helpful campers from Manchester and another group from Stuttgart, who helped us move the van on and off our pitch.
The only other negative for me was that the chemical toilet was not in the main block and I couldn't find an easy way to empty the waste water carrier(nothing near the pitches)
The main shower and toilet block is immaculate and plenty of room for all.
The pool and slides are undoubtedly the star attraction, along with the bar/restaurant and evening music entertainment.
The people on site do have limited english but, as everywhere in France, it is courteous to at least attempt to speak French.
Chose this site because we didn't want to have to move our camper much once we got there. We weren't disappointed. The site is in the village - five minutes walk to a large Lidl and even less into the village centre where there is a lovely bakers, nice bar, tabac, butchers. The twice weekly market is very good and pretty big. Well worth a visit. The cycle tracks along the coast are great. The campsite itself is large but not too large. Good pool and slides. Lots of activities. Nice bar and good entertainment. Didn't eat at bar but drink prices were ok and it was very popular. Toilets and showers were kept really clean and there were plenty of them. Some pitches looked a bit tight but ours was large (in the new area by the super pitches. ) Unfortunately we had no shade and it was really hot. Ground was pretty hard and stony so you need good pegs. You do get some noise from other campsites at night but it wasn't too bad and was finished before midnight. Overall, this was a great site in a lovely area. There were loads of places to visit nearby and I would be happy to go to this site and area again. (N. B. Our kids are 10 and 13 and they really liked the site too. )
Just spent a week at Le Chapponet and had a lovely time. The site itself is very clean and the pitches are spacious and private being separated by large mature shrubs and bushes.
The toilet blocks are ample and spotless even in the height of the season. BBQ areas are plentiful, although we had a couple on our pitch before we realised we were supposed to use the bbq areas and the information supplied was in French. Whoops! Think this is probably due to prevent fire due to very dusty ground at this time of year.
Did spend a lot of time sweeping out the van due to the dead grass and soil / sand but hey ho, we were in the Vendee!
Hookups are a mixture of 2 pin and 3 pin, but you can hire an adapter for free with a 40€ cash deposit. You also need to provide a 20€ cash deposit for the access key. Barriers are closed between 11pm and 7am.
The noise curfew starts at 12.30am, which for us was just too late.
You can hire bikes on the site, although they are not brilliantly maintained. If you are thinking of taking of your own bikes, do, we bitterly regretted it as there miles of designated cycling paths in this area and 10€ a day can get a bit steep.
The pool complex is still lovely and clean, however, there was no lifeguard when we were there and the jacuzzi was never working. The toddler pool was not heated and absolutely freezing. The slides were for children over the age of 7. There is a good sized well maintained park too.
We tried to eat in the restaurant one evening, but after arriving at 7.45 were told that we would have to wait until 9.30 to eat! We found the local restaurant up the hill and to the left was good value and very nice.
Brem itself is about 5-10 minute walk away depending on where you are on the site. There is a cafe and a restaurant. An excellent bakers and butchers (go there for your barbecue food, amazing!) and minimarket. Avoid the Super U/Leclerc etc in Bretignolle and St Giles on a Sunday and Monday morning. It was worse than Christmas!
The beach is 1.3km away, it seemed like a lot longer, probably because you have to walk through sand dunes to get to it. Follow the directions out of the back of the site though as the beach they send you to is far less crowded but there is no lifeguard. You can park bikes at the top easily, but we did get a puncture in our buggy wheel.
This is a site we would come back to, mainly because although Brem is small, it has good facilities, the best beach of the local four star sites, and is generally very pleasant.
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