Discover unique tourist attractions and exceptional visits :
Go on board Escal-Atlantic, a transatlantic liner that has been almost completely reconstructed to its original size. Explore the Espadon submarine. Go back in time and discover the history of Saint-Nazaire at its Ecomuseum. See the companies that have produced industry giants, from the shipyards to the Airbus factory. Stop in front of the terminals of the largest port on the French Atlantic . . . In the summer, you can also visit the region's most beautiful megalithic monuments and go on a mini cruise that show you Saint-Nazaire from the sea.
L'Espadon was built by the Augustin Normand shipyard in the Havre. It was launched in 1958 and went into service in 1960.
This 78-metre submarine can stay underwater between 5 and 6 days. With its electric motors, it has a maximum surface speed of 16 knots and an underwater speed of 18 knots (or about 29 and 32 km/h). L'Espadon has been in service for 25 years. It has spent 2 561 days at sea and 33 796 hours underwater. It has travelled 360 547 nautical miles—the equivalent of 17 times around the world.
Since 1987, L'Espadon has been welcoming visitors. L'Espadon is the only operational submarine that is open to visitors in France.
Before going on board, look around you—the submarine is berthed in the oldest gate in the port. L'Espadon was launched in 1856. During World War II, The German army strengthened it in order to protect the submarine base site.
The Naval Shipyard has built hundreds of ships, including the most beautiful transatlantic liners that still fire imaginations today— Ile de France, Normandie, France…
Liners -cruise liners- have made a comeback since the end of the 1980s, with ships such as the Mistral, the Monarch of the Seas, the Millennium series, and of course Queen Mary 2, which took less than two years to construct and was launched in December 2003.
Over the past few years, the shipyard has built several cruise liners, notably for the Italian shipowner MSC—including MSC Fantasia, the largest cruise liner ever commissioned by a European shipowner. MSC Fantasia was launched in December 2008.
The Norwegian Epic was built for the American shipowner NCL. Launched in 2010, it is the largest liner that Saint-Nazaire has ever constructed. The Norwegian Epic is 330 metres long. It can hold up to 6 500 people, including 4 700 passengers.