Fish and seefood

Oléron Island is home to La Cotinière which is Charente-Maritime's leading fish and seafood harbour. In 2005 no less than 4800 tones of fish were unloaded on La Cotinière docks, which represents a 21 million euro sales turnover.  At La Cotinière Harbour 250 to 300 fishermen work year-round on some 100 fishing boats. This traditional fishing harbour now uses a modern computerized auction system and has a boat lift.

Produce diversity is what best characterises La Cotinière Harbour. Over 90 species can be found on the market stalls : such as bass, langoustine, céteau (La Cotinière is France's leading céteaux fishing harbour). You can observe the fish being unloaded on the quays anytime of the year and also watch the enthusiastic trading from the gallery overlooking the auction hall.

For years the fishermen of La Cotinière have been taking an active part in the environmental management of the fishing grounds by using equipment that enables small fish and langoustines to escape the net. Fishers of the latter have been awarded a prize by an international NGO in gratitude for their being the first amongst their trade to contribute to sustainable and responsible fishing.

In July and August various events take place at the harbour. On Fridays between 2pm to 7 pm do not miss the "lecture" from a local fish and seafood specialist. These talks offer the chance to learn all aspects of the local seafood story, from fishing to cooking. Complement this knowledge with the opportunity to enjoy fresh produce tastings as well.

For health and safety reasons and in order to guarantee the quality of the seafood landed, access to the unloading quay and the auction is only possible during guided visits. These visits, which will enable you to understand the operation of the port and the auction, are on the first Friday of every month and during the school holidays. In July and August, many different events are held in the port. 

During the high season from 4 pm onwards, the stalls line up along the auction hall displaying a vast array of fish caught on the day at the "Marché de la Victorine".

Vos avis...