Ascension weekend: the time for big departures has come in the campsites of Charente-Maritime

After the great viaduct of this May 8 and the ascent, the tourists left, generating, as when they arrived, traffic jams, particularly on the islands of Ré and Oléron from Saturday evening. It must be said that tourists were there with good attendance at the accommodation in Charente-Maritime. Hotels, lodges and campsites posted an occupancy rate of almost 100%. Tourists who took advantage of almost summer-like weather and who, for some, are already looking forward to next weekend, also extended thanks to Pentecost Monday. But before that, we had to decide to pack up. This Sunday, it was the great ballet of departures, like at the Village Corsaire campsite in Châtelaillon-Plage.

The barrier rises and falls tirelessly. The campsite is gradually emptying of its thousand occupants. In the aisles, the doors slam, the engines are started. We meet Alexis and her little family. This doctor came from Bordeaux, he joined a couple of friends who came from Poitiers with their children. Everyone leaves with a head full of memories: “lots of bikes especially for children, swimming pool, beach, evening meals, aperitifs”. Even if tomorrow is the start again, this dad has the “pep” thanks to this long sunny weekend.

After being fully booked for the weekend of the ascent, the Village Corsaire campsite in Châtelaillon-Plage (Charente-Maritime) was emptied of its occupants this Sunday, May 12, 2024. © Radio France
Delphine Marion Boulle

A little further on, Julie, her husband and their three boys finish getting ready: “we returned the keys to the mobile home. Everything is put away. We have just loaded the trunk and it’s a real headache because with the children, we have a lot of things to take. There, we load the bikes before leaving. take the road” she explains. Direction Vendée, under the gray: “since there’s no sun, it’s a little less difficult to leave” Julie recognizes.

In the campsite, we clean the mobile homes, and we load the cars before leaving © Radio France
Delphine Marion Boulle

“Madame cleans and Monsieur loads” laughs Alexandre, who comes from Gaillac in Tarn. The long weekend was very busy, as Alexandre and his wife Karine participated in the world joëlette championship, “chairs adapted for racing with disabled people and four people pushing” he explains. “Ona a team that came second in the women’s category, and two other teams that came 17th and 31st.” says Alexandre. So, to resume smoothly, he has the solution: “it’s simple, I think I’m going to take tomorrow (Monday) off”.

After the tourists have left, it's time for Pauline and the rest of the campsite team to clean up.
After the tourists have left, it’s time for Pauline and the rest of the campsite team to clean up. © Radio France
Delphine Marion Boulle

As the tourists leave, Pauline and her colleagues spring into action to clean up the pitches, particularly the mobile homes. “It takes half an hour per bungalow if you’re quick enough. It depends on the people. There, it’s pretty clean, but there are others that aren’t clean at all” explains the young woman. The day promises to be long, like all the campsites located on the coast, the Corsair Village was full. “We had to refuse people” explains his boss, Jean-Baptiste Dagréou.

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What about next weekend, also extended, but with the weather forecast to be more gloomy? In his campsite, the man who is also at the head of the federation of outdoor hotels in Charente-Maritime and New Aquitaine is calm. “We are at 82% occupancy and I think we risk being full given the reservations that are coming in and the activities that are happening in the area. I don’t know if we will have many places available for the passage“. But the weekend will not compete with this great bridge of ascension, firstly because it is only over three days, then because “Last minute reservations or last minute visits, there will be much less if we have gray weather”.

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The fact remains that this month of May is exceptional and will make it possible, in all cases, to compensate for the 30% losses recorded in April according to Jean-Baptiste Dagréou.

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