Eglise Saint-Martin de Saint-Martin-de-Re, Saint Martin de Re

#5 of 6 in Historic Sites in Ile de Re
Church · Landmark
Saint-Martin-de-Ré is a commune in the western French department of Charente-Maritime.
It is one of the ten communes located on the Île de Ré.
FortificationsSaint-Martin-de-Ré has extensive fortifications, reflecting the strategic importance of the Île de Ré. During the Huguenot Rebellions of the 1620s, Cardinal Richelieu ordered that the island be fortified as a counterweight to the Protestant nearby city of La Rochelle on the French mainland. This included a citadel at Saint Martin. After La Rochelle had been subdued, Saint-Martin's fortification were largely demolished to remove its potential threat to royal power.
In 1627, an English invasion force under the command of George Villiers, Duke of Buckingham attacked the island in order to relieve the Siege of La Rochelle. After three months of combats in the Siege of Saint-Martin-de-Ré against the French under Marshal Toiras, the Duke was forced to withdraw in defeat.
Later, in the 1670s, the French engineer, Vauban was commissioned to review and overhaul the island's defences and, as a result, Saint Martin was enclosed by extensive and modern walls and embankments. This was done in three major phases ending in 1702 and the end result was an enclosed town capable of housing the island's population for a long siege.
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Eglise Saint-Martin de Saint-Martin-de-Re reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.0
69 reviews
  • Well worth a visit if you are passing. Old fortified church. Large and fairly plain inside. Model fishing boats hanging from the ceiling. Interesting  more »
  • Passed this small church several times and were intrigued by the architecture. Very serene place. The panoramic view on the church tour is worth the climb. We had our toddler with us, a bit of a....  more »
  • Go to the top, take some pictures. It really is a nice view for 2 Euros per person. Just be aware that while it is not a long climb, it is very narrow.
  • You can go to the top of the church and get a view of the town.
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