Are you in charge of children and want to plan an original school outing without the hassle of having to organize transport? Why not opt for a boat trip on the river in the Nantes area?
An outdoor biology and natural history lesson
On the River Erdre or on the Sèvre Nantaise, let your students discover the diversity of local wildlife and plant life! The outing can turn into an invaluable biology and natural history lesson.
If they look for wildlife, the students may catch sight of River Sèvre beavers, coypu and if they’re very observant (and lucky), a common genet.
Birdlife is particularly abundant, with grey herons and night herons, cormorants, seagulls, spoonbills, coots, mallards, swans and many other species.
The local plantlife includes protected species like bushy cinquefoil, horsetail or fleabane. Rivers in the Nantes area are also home to invasive exotic plants introduced in France over a century ago, such as Parrot’s Feather or primrose willow.
You can also sail up to the plaine de Mazerolles marshes, located on a migration route, and home to dozens of animal, bird and plant species.
A history lesson on the River Erdre
The banks of the River Erdre are also the perfect setting for a history lesson, with a rich architectural and historical heritage.
Châteaux in the Nantes area
Many châteaux and stately homes line the banks of the River Erdre: As you glide past on your electric boat, you have a unique vantage point from which to admire these magnificent buildings dating from the 14th to the 20th century. Your students will be able to see:
- The Château de l’Eraudière, built in the 16th century, facing the river.
- The Château de la Desnerie, a listed historic building, with its twin towers dating back to the 15th century.
- The Château de la Poterie, which was only completed at the French Revolution in 1789 by Ceineray, the architect.
- The Château de la Chantrerie which has overlooked the River Erdre since 1820, with its massive grounds, now a well-known park for the citizens of Nantes.
- The Château de la Gascherie, a listed historic building built in the 15th century. This is where the Protestants fleeing Nantes in 1563 took refuge from persecution.
- The Château de Nay: built in the 19th century, it includes a tower, a private chapel and a dovecote.
The German occupation and the Resistance movement in Nantes
As the course of the River Erdre has changed throughout history, you can also touch on the history of the Second World War, near the Cours des 50 otages.
This major thoroughfare was renamed after the war to commemorate the execution by firing squad of 48 hostages, following the assassination of the German Feldcommandant Karl Holz. The 48 hostages included a 17-year-old, Guy Môquet.
Organizing your school boat trip
When organizing a school trip, remember to book well in advance, and specify the number of students and accompanying adults involved. We can then tell you how many electric boats will be needed.
Our electric boats can take up to 10 passengers, which is ideal for small school parties. We provide information packs on the route and points of interest, to help the teachers. 😉
Your trip can start either from our Île de Versailles boat hire base in Nantes or from Sucé-sur-Erdre.
To book your trip, we can work out the best options for your school outing. You can also write to us via our contact form!