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Saint Maries de la Mer Town Guide

Saint Maries de la Mer

Les Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer is ideal for those seeking the Camargue experience - namely striking pink flamingos, small white Arab horses herded by 'gardiens' or cowboys and black bulls which compete in the nightly 'Courses Camargues' or bullfights.

Les Saintes-Maries also has a rich religious heritage which stems from after Christ's crucifixion when the three Marys (Salome, Magdalene and Jacobe) landed here and built an oratory.
Les Saintes-Maries then developed as a place of pilgrimage still visited today by huge numbers of Gypsies who come to pay their respects to their patron saint Sarah who was Mary Jacobe's
servant girl.  The 'peleringage des Gitans' takes place on 24-25 May when the streets are filled with music, flamenco and bullfights. 

Les Saintes-Maries is also not far from the delightful walled town of Aigues-Mortes where St-Louis (IX) set sail for the Crusades in 1248.
 

Sights and Places to visit

Centre d'Information la Capeliere
Salin-de-Giraud on D36B, 13732
Will introduce you to the flora and fauna of the surrounding lagoons
| Admission charge | Opening Times: Closed Tue | Tel: +33 (0)4 90 97 00 97

Domaine de Mejanes
D37 on edge of Etang de Vaccares, 13732
Offers horseriding, canoeing, bullfights and cowboy demonstrations on the Etang de Vaccares
| Admission charge | Tel: +33 (0)4 90 97 10 62

Musee Camarguais
Mas du Pont de Rousty, Arles 13200
Details the fragile ecosystem of the Camargue
| Admission charge | Opening Times: Oct-Mar:Wed-Mon; Apr-Sep:daily | Tel: +33 (0)4 90 97 10 82

Plage de L'Espiguette
South of le Grau du Roi, Le Grau du Roi 30220
a wonderful long stretch of sand dunes


Tour de Constance
Rue Zola, Aigues-Mortes 30220
Defense tower inside the walls with access to ramparts
| Admission charge | Opening Times: Daily | Tel: +33 (0)4 66 53 61 55

Parc ornithologique
Pont de Gau, 4km N of Les-Stes, 13732
Offers guided walks through the marshlands and aviaries of the Camargue
| Admission charge | Opening Times: Daily | Tel: +33 (0)4 90 97 82 62

Plage naturiste
Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer 13732
Fine-sand beaches surround Les Stes around the phare de la Gacholle (nudist beach)


Salins-du-Midi
S of Aigues-Mortes, 30220
Visit the salt pans of the Petite Camargue
| Admission charge | Opening Times: to arrange a visit | Tel: +33 (0)4 66 53 85 20

Cinema 3-D Relief
Place de Verdun, Aigues-Mortes 30220
Will enlighten you on the fragile ecosystem of the Camargue with a half-hour 3-D film
| Admission charge | Opening Times: Mid Feb-Mid Nov | Tel: +33 (0)4 66 53 68 50

Bullfights
Ave Van Gogh, Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer 13732
Held in Les Saintes-Maries Arenes
| Admission charge | Tel: +33 (0)4 90 97 10 60

Musee des Gitans
Next to Auberge de Jeunesse in Pioch Badet, Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer 13732
All you need to know about the Gypsies and their patron saint Sarah
| Admission charge | Opening Times: Daily | Tel: +33 (0)4 90 97 52 85

Pescalune
Canal at entrance to town, Aigues-Mortes 30220
offer barge tours of the Petite Camargue for flamingos and black bulls
| Admission charge | Tel: +33 (0)4 66 53 79 47


 

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