The lighthouse of Chassiron
The Story of an emblematic Oleronese lighthouse
At the northern end of the Ile d'Oléron, on the territory of the commune of Saint-Denis d'Oléron, the Chassiron lighthouse can be recognized from afar with its black stripes.
Before the lighthouse, now a must on the island, the entrance to the Antioche Inlet was signaled to sailors by a bitter tower about thirty meters high, built under Colbert in 1685. In the 19e century, the erosion of the cliff and the increase of maritime traffic between the Charente estuary and the Rochefort arsenal made the construction of a new lighthouse necessary. In 1826, the Chassiron lighthouse was erected, visible from afar thanks to its 46 meters high. The lighthouse will remain white until the 20's: it will then be dressed with its black stripes which make it even more visible and clearly distinguish it from the whale lighthouse facing it on the Ile de Ré. Electrified in 1930, the Chassiron lighthouse remains guarded until 1998.
Visit the Chassiron lighthouse
Unavoidable visit during your stay at the Sables Vignier campsite on the Ile d'Oléron. The ascent of the Chassiron lighthouse offers a exceptional view on the Antioch pertuis, up to the continent and on a large part of the island. After climbing the 224 steps of the lighthouse, one can also observe Fort Boyard, the island of Aix and the island of Ré. On the first floor, in the rotunda, is installed a fascinating audio-guided museum around the life of the island over the centuries and especially around the profession of sailor.
In summer, guided tours of the lighthouse are offered at night: the opportunity to watch the spectacle of the sunset from the top and then the automatic lighting of the lantern. You can also enjoy guided tours around the lighthouse, on the coastal environment of the Pointe de Chassiron, on the biodiversity of the rocky foreshore or on the fish locks.
Lighthouse information, rates and schedules
At 12 km from camping des Sables Vigniers Plage, the Chassiron lighthouse can be visited every day, without interruption in summer from 10am to 8pm, and in the mornings or afternoons from March to October. The guided tours organized in the open air around the lighthouse last from 2 to 3 hours. The night tours are proposed in July and August only.
The price of the ascent to the top of the lighthouse is 3 euros full price and 1,50 euros for children from 3 to 15 years old. The same price is set for the visit of the museum alone, without ascent. The combined ticket top of the lighthouse + museography of the apartments is 5 euros full price and 2.50 euros for children. The night visits as well as the outdoor visits are at the price of 4 euros adult rate and 2 euros child rate.