Once known as the French Geneva, La Rochelle is a historic port and ancient sailors’ city, formerly the stronghold of the Huguenots. It was founded as a fishing village in the 10th century on a rocky platform in the center of a marshland. La Rochelle is one such truly exceptional site. Only past events, whether cheerful or sorrowful, can allow one to fully understand the colorful character of La Rochelle.
You can sit outside at the tables and drink some local wine, pastis or coffee, watching the boats go by in the Vieux Port. At lunch time they all serve light meals, snacks or sandwiches. As a part of this policy the municipality has been promoting the use of electric cars, bicycles and public transport. At this moment, there are 235 electric vehicles on the road, which makes La Rochelle the leading city for electric vehicles within the European Union. The Laleu neighbourhood, also near the bridge, is famous as you’ll find La Rochelle airport there.
Although its fisheries, canneries, and shipyards still make it a busy port, La Rochelle never recovered its former importance. The principal harbor is now at La Pallice, some 3 mi (5 km) distant. It’s probably the single most famous feature along with the port fortifications. Walk through and you’ll be at the port.
CNOUS and EGIDE manage French government scholarships as well as programs for university cooperation sponsored by the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In the 16th and 17th centuries it was the centre of trade with French Canada.