Noirmoutier (island)

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The Passage du Gois leading to the island of Noirmoutier.

The island of Noirmoutier is off the Atlantic coast of France in the Vendée department.

Parts of the island have been reclaimed from the sea. In 2005 it served as the finish of the Tour de France prologue.

The communes of the island are grouped into a communauté de communes. The communes are:

The island is most notable for the Passage du Gois, a paved-over sandbank with a length of 4.5 kilometers, one of the routes that connects the island to the mainland. It is flooded twice a day by the high tide. Every year, a foot race – the Foulées du Gois – is held across it, starting at the onset of the high tide.


Windmill on the island

Noirmoutier was the location of the first recorded Viking raid on continental Europe, when raiders attacked the monastery of Saint Philibert of Jumièges in 799.[1]

St. Mary Euphrasia Pelletier was born on this island on July 31, 1796.


  1. ^ Sawyer, Peter. "The Viking Expansion." The Cambridge History of Scandinavia, Volume 1: Prehistory to 1520. 105.

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Coordinates: 46°58′N 2°12′W / 46.967°N 2.200°W / 46.967; -2.200