A distinctive atmosphere
Belle-Île-en-Mer is a favourite destination for recreational boaters, because the harbours in Le Palais and Sauzon have a special atmosphere that sets them apart from other the harbours on the mainland. The harbour master’s offices will give you all the information you need for mooring, depending on the size of your boat and your arrival time (tidal harbours).
The island has its own chandlers and shipyards, so you can quickly deal with any repairs or maintenance required. They can also take charge of caretaking your boat and winterising your engine.
Your boat must be duly registered and you must be in possession of a navigation permit or a certificate of registry (tonnage over two tons).
You may navigate only within the limits authorised for your boat’s design category and you must have onboard ALL the safety equipment required for your boat’s design category. This includes individual and collective lifesaving equipment, water-removal and fire-fighting equipment, operating and maintenance equipment, etc.
You may only pilot a motorised pleasure craft with a true load of over 4.5kW (6HP) if you hold a pilot’s licence issued by the Maritime Affairs Department.
Check the weather forecasts before you set out, as well as any urgent notifications for sailors (“AVURNAVS” in French). Check the tide times, find out about the tidal currents in the zones where you will be sailing and, before you set out, tell your family or friends your route and your expected time of arrival in the harbour.
That way, in the event of any concerns about your safety, the CROSS surveillance and rescue centre (tel. 33 (0)2 97 55 35 35, VHF Channel 16) will know where to start looking.
At sea, scrupulously follow the Steering and Sailing Rules laid down by the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea.
All boats and seacraft are subject to these rules.
Use your distress signals only when necessary. Improper usage could trigger an unnecessary sea rescue operation
and is punishable by law.
>> Crossa Étel ...............................................1616 ou 02 97 55 35 35
>> Rescue boat Belle-Isle ........................................... 02 97 31 54 07
>> The Maritime affairs departement in the Le Palais town hall 9.30-12.00am tuesdays
>> Maritime survenor: Pascal Maigret ............................. 06 07 71 57 89
>> St-Louis - Quai Roussel - Le Palais ............. tél/fax : 02 97 31 52 06
>> Shipping forecasts (available from the harbour offices)
- For beaches, surfing and coastal navigation (0,34 E/mn) 0 892 68 08 56
- For ocean navigation (0,34 E/mn) ..................................0 892 68 08 77
- By e-mail ....................................... www.meteo.fr/marine/navimail
Le Palais harbour
Contact the harbour master's office : VHF channel 9 or call 02 97 31 42 90
Ferries and passenger shuttle services take priority for entering the harbour.
There is a shower block (7 showers and 7 toilets) at the wet dock. Ice also available.
In season and on weekends in spring, call the harbour master's office for vacancies.
Le Palais harbour is made up of four basins
• The outer harbour, which never dries out, is well sheltered from wind, except east to south-easterlies.
Side-by-side buoy mooring, north harbour wall, avoiding the overnight mooring zones for ferries and the breakwater; 70 berths.
Regulated, very limited berthing at the Bonnelle slipway.
• The inner grounding harbour, after the Yser channel, at the foot of the citadel. A few places available along the starboard wharves. The small pontoon may not be used. Scrubbing grid; water at the lock.
• The wet dock. Entry is regulated by a lock, which is opened for 3 hours at daytime high tide. Pedestrian footbridge raised on request. 90 floating, side-by-side berths alongside the docks. The regular coastal cargo ship service takes priority on the starboard wharf.
• The "saline" marina with finger pontoons; a few berths available in season.
Inquire at the harbour master’s office 24hrs beforehand.
Port of Sauzon
Contact the harbour master's office : VHF channel 9 or call 02 97 31 63 40
Showers, washing machine and drier.
• Port Bellec and outer harbour: we strongly advise against this area when winds are E to NE.
Anchored mooring prohibited (cross chains).
- Port Bellec: 22 visitor moorings (white swinging buoys), all boats, max. length 15m.
- Outer harbour: to starboard as you enter (west): 40 side-by-side visitor moorings (white trot buoys), mono-hull yachts only; max. length 12.5m; max. draught 2m.
On the port side as you enter (east): no-fishing area (danger). Buoys reserved for professionals and subscribers, with underwater obstacles and floating debris.
• Grounding harbour: well-sheltered area, recommended for all types of dinghies and keel boats that can be properly shored up on a hard bed.
60 visitor moorings (red trot buoys, numbered in pairs).
Anchored trot moorings authorised from the last line of buoys to the entrance to the Pen-Prad basin (around 50 visitor moorings).
• Pen-Prad basin: Because of major, hazardous silting, the basin is closed to visitors (inquire at the harbour office)