The Towers of La Rochelle symbolize both the power and wealth of La Rochelle because it includes an actual urban keep and a palace that looks out over the water. The most easily recognizable landmark is the three historic towers that stand at the entrance to the harbor and are collectively listed as a National Monument. Explore the towers to unearth the treasure trove of information and works of art that have been hidden for centuries.
According to popular belief, the fairy known as Mélusine was the one who built the Tower of Saint Nicholas. Her apron became torn when she flew over La Rochelle carrying the shattered stones of a castle that had been destroyed. As the stones tumbled down, they stacked one on top of the other, eventually forming what is now known as La Tour Saint-Nicolas.
The tower of Saint Nicholas Church is the highest point of any of the three churches that make up the complex. Its walls can be up to six meters thick, and inside those walls is an intricate network of staircases, passageways, and rooms, including a chapel. You can take the 'easy' staircase down the tower or the 'double helix' staircase, which is more complex and potentially hazardous.
It got its name from the large iron chain that had to be pulled with a winch to let boats into and out of the Vieux Port. This was required to let boats pass through. As a direct consequence of this, the tower captain was responsible for monitoring the activities of the boats and collecting the necessary tolls. After the explosion, the tower stood empty for the next three hundred years. Significant work on the structure's restoration was carried out during the 20th and 21st centuries. It is now home to a fascinating collection of exhibits that explore La Rochelle's role in the French movement to Canada.
The presentation is fascinating and explains the significant difficulties they faced once they arrived in Canada and the difficulties they encountered while traveling.
The Tour de la Lanterne is the only remaining medieval lighthouse on the Atlantic coast, and it has always served as both a lighthouse and a prison. It is located on the corner of the sea wall in the neighborhood of St. Jean-du-Pérot. Before they entered the port, the person in charge of disarming ships resided in the building known as the 'ship disarmer's residence,' which features a large arrow and a lantern for the convenience of passing mariners. It is a 'sea look-out' that stands 55 meters tall and is used by the military for coastal surveillance. It is visible from all sides of the Pertuis d'Antioche, the strait separating the islands of Ré, Aix, and Oléron. A remarkable assortment of graffiti carved into the walls of the lantern tower by the pirates and prisoners who were held there can be found inside the structure. Several hundred examples of graffiti are to be seen, many of which feature highly intricate design work.
Vieux Port, Quai Duperre, 17000, La Rochelle, France