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Phare du Cordouan

Certificate of Excellence
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Address: 33123 Le Verdon Sur Mer, France
Phone Number:
+33 5 57 42 28 76
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours

A unique monument in the world, located right in the middle of the sea, at...

A unique monument in the world, located right in the middle of the sea, at 4.350 miles to French coasts. Every year, it opens its doors to 25 000 enthusiast visitors keen on discovering lighthouse’s history. Get on board in a boat from Gironde or Charente coasts and you will land 4.350 miles in a sandbank surrounded by the ocean: it’s down the lighthouse that adventure begins. Cordouan is like no others: it remains the oldest French lighthouse still in use, while still hosting lighthouse keepers. They are four, taking turns in pairs all year, to provide the site maintenance, but also welcome visitors, showing around the monument. Cordouan lighthouse is a military art structure, classified monument since 1862. During the visit, you could admire a room of great rarity: the chapel of “Notre Dame de Cordouan” situated in the second floor, which is certainly the most majestic part of the structure.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 194 reviews
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    Very good
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It always marvels me to see such ingenuity. And architecture is somewhat of a passion for me so with such a beautiful and sunny day, I was in heaven.

Reviewed 6 December 2016
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194 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 13: English reviews
Level Contributor
37 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 December 2016

It always marvels me to see such ingenuity. And architecture is somewhat of a passion for me so with such a beautiful and sunny day, I was in heaven.

Thank JeanBaptisteGuy
Soulac-sur-Mer, France
Level Contributor
119 reviews
48 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 October 2016

This lighthouse is magical. If you are in the area it is a must see, must do activity. The cruises are starting to charge far too much to go there but it is an unforgettable experience. Absolutely beautiful inside with a great view. Highly recommended.

Thank RIF123
California, USA
Level Contributor
1,123 reviews
375 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 351 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 October 2016 via mobile

nothing around in Le Verdon. 2 km from cruise port but close by beach town with market and shopping. meutermedia

Thank MeuterMedia
Level Contributor
87 reviews
41 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 December 2015

This is a trip that you shouldn't miss - just choose a day when the sea isn't too rough!!! The trip out by boat is wonderful but dress for the weather. The wind can be cold and the sun can be very hot. The lighthouse itself is incredible! beautiful, historic and acoustic. Well worth the time.

Thank John C
Level Contributor
31 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 August 2015 via mobile

Went out on a boat trip from Royans. The lighthouse is on a sand bank off the coast. To get to it you have to wait through the water and then walk over the sand from the boat. The kids had a blast.

Thank appenz
Quebec City, Canada
Level Contributor
66 reviews
56 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 July 2015 via mobile

We took the boat from Royan in a beautiful sunny day.It took us almost 30' to get there and as soon as we arrived, we could imagine it would be an interesting visit. There was a guide who explained to us the whole history of the lighthouse. We went upstairs (300steps) to admire the amazing view of the coast. Strongly... More 

2 Thank Clarissa M
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
39 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 January 2015

find out which French King had this light-house built, what the area looked like then, discover the amazing view and, crazy enough, check your phone for the best mobile reception..

1 Thank Sean20122207
Hendersonville, United States
Level Contributor
30 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 October 2014

This lighthouse has such history; it is not the original one, but it certainly is well worth the visit. We had no idea what to expect, when our trip advisor, France Just for You, booked this. She had told us we needed wet shoes and to wear clothes appropriate for walking in the water. So we did. The only drawback... More 

Thank Linda N
Rochefort, France
Level Contributor
68 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 October 2014

Although this trip is listed under Verdun, it can be taken from Royan also: which is what we did. And it is the trip from there that is itself that is part of the enjoyment/challenge. NB this is not suitable for physically disabled people: there is water to wade through and 301 steps to climb, There are two boats operating... More 

1 Thank frenchderek
Catonsville, MD
Level Contributor
188 reviews
28 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 July 2014

For us this was the adventure of the year. This is a magnificent lighthouse, loaded with history. It dates back to 1584 and is still in service on a tiny island, 7 kilometers out to sea near the mouth of the Gironde estuary. We went on an excursion boat La Boheme from La Pointe de Graves. The boatmen took us... More 

2 Thank CatonsvilleGeorge

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Typical questions asked:
  • Do I have to buy a ticket for my infant?
  • How do I get there using public transportation?
  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?