Saint-Guinoux

Port Winiau

Saint-Guinoux ©PContin

On the borders of the Marais Blanc and the Marais Noir

The town is on the hillside and stretches over the lower part of Chateauneuf wetlands located in from the coastline.

Saint-Guinoux was called Port Winiau under the Roman occupation. Today, the sea is dammed and has retreated far from Saint-Guinoux, replaced by a vast wetlands plain, drained by canals and planted with poplars and reeds.

The unusual topography of the municipality, which rises up a hill culminating at 45 metres altitude limits the possibilities for road building. The different hamlets are strung-out in a straight line on a north-south axis, forming a continuous line of buildings.

Saint-Guinoux

Heritage buildings

The buildings are relatively modest, with the exception of the Manor of Maupertuis, dating from the 16th century and remodelled in the 18th century, a former property of the Mathematician and naturalist Pierre Maupertuis. The oratory of Notre Dame de la Garde, protector of sailors at sea, is located on the site of an old observation post. The church dates from the second half of the 18th century.

 

Saint-Guinoux

At the bend of a stream

Meleuc brook runs through the town and drains the wetlands south of Saint-Guinoux to the Canal des Allemands, a channel dug by the Germans to the bay during the Second World War. Its purpose was to flood the wetlands to prevent the allies landing in this area, which is below sea level. This channel is now used as an integral part of the drainage system of the wetlands, where lots of different bird colonies are to be found.

 

 

Phytopark

Since 2017, the municipality has been fully equipped for sustainable development. The phytopark is a once polluted and non-constructible area which has been transformed into family and cultural tourist site with a vegetable garden, an orchard, sculptures and an educational discovery trail.

 

648 hectares - 1,172 inhabitants - locals known as Guinoléens & Guinoléennes