The Villecartier Forest

Villecartier Forest is the remains of the Royal forest which covered the Armorique peninsula in ancient times, 1000 hectares of magnificient beech, trees and holly trees Villecartier Forest, landscape of history: Norman invaders took refuge in the Xth centuries and Republicans confronted with Chouans during the war in Vendée…
Once upon a time, the forest was a place of industry where whole communities of coalmen, clog makers, and lumberjacks lived and worked. In the 18th and 19th centuries, thousands of wheelbarrows were made here used to repair of the swamp dikes and to deepen the bed of the river Vilaine. The coalmen harvested and sold ash as washing product and fertilizer and until recently, Clog makers' lived and worked in wooden huts scattered throughout the forest. After the First World War, many of the clog makers left the forest to settle down in the nearby villages but several families worked and lived in the forest until the 1950’s. During the second World War lumberjacks came to the aid of the allies by cutting down trees and they used them to barracade the bay of the Mont Saint-Michel, known as “Asparaguses of Rommel”, an effective tool to fortify the Atlantic coast.
Today Villecartier Forest is dedicated to leisure activities and nature enthusiasts. Miles of walking and biking trails bring you deep into the forest, around the lake and through the valleys, enveloping you in our most cherished treasure and offering the opportunity to discover the landscape of our history.


Small Monuments Trail

From the Miniature Port, this 9 km trail tours the smaller monuments scattered throughout the forest : Auge of the Clog makers, oak of Pétils, Milestone Beeches, Royal Beech, Cross of Sainte-Anne, Oratory of Saint-Mathurin, Column of the Chouans

The Nature Trail

This trail criss-crosses the forest and it’s valleys, there are panels which explain the fauna and points of interest along the path.