As soon as you step out of the Tourist Information centre, you can see the Hôtel Jacobsen, a beautiful example of remarkable architecture built in 1760. Jean-Cornil Jacobsen built this and other sites on the island including the jetty of the same name and the Müllembourg marsh.
Next, head for Place de l'Hôtel de Ville. The Town Hall was rebuilt in 1884 to match the 18th century traders' houses and has only lost its belfry. The square is in the very heart of the commercial Grande Rue area.
Then, you'll see the Château (12th century) before you. It was listed as a "Monument Historique" in 1994 and its dungeon is now a museum housing collections of Noirmoutier heritage (dating back to Pre-history) and a large collection of Jersey porcelain. It has fantastic views of the town and sea.
Now you're in front of Saint Philbert Church. It has an 11th century crypt and houses Saint Philbert's tomb, the monk who built the foundations of the island's economy. In 1794, the church imprisoned 1500 people from the Vendée who were massacred during the Vendée Wars.
Last but not least you can explore the Banzeau area, one of the oldest on the island. In the 11th century it was occupied by people working at the abbey then it was home to sailors in the 17th century. The area is as pretty as a picture with its lanes edged with wallflowers and quirky white houses with colourful shutters.
Guided tour "Noirmoutier centre: history and heritage"
The former black monastery, St Philbert Church, the fortress, the town's growth, the traders' and shipowners' houses and so much more. Spend two hours learning about the history and heritage with your professional tour guides, Brigitte ((00 33) (0)6 87 39 11 48) and Anne-Marie ((00 33) (0)6 88 46 32 75).