Sandaya L'Oree Du Bois Review
great all rounder campsite…Rustic, yet modern…
Camping Sandaya L’Orée du Bois was the perfect choice for my birthday getaway this year. With a short 4-night stay, we were able to experience a lot and have some unforgettable moments. Join us as we share our thoughts on this campsite, its pros, and cons.
Pros of Camping l'Oree Du Bois
It’s safe to say we enjoyed this campsite.
Cons of camping l'Oree Du Bois
Every family prefers certain things about a campsite, so our “cons” could be on your “pros” list!
Pool complex at Camping l'Oree du bois
Booking this campsite in Spring was a gamble due to the absence of an indoor pool. What would we do if it was too cold to swim? However, we had read reviews mentioning that the outdoor pools were pleasantly heated, even during the pre-summer season. And they were right! The pools offered perfect swimming temperatures, and we particularly enjoyed the lazy river, while our 3-year-old had a blast on the slides.
Although the pool area was adequate for low season occupancy, it might get crowded during peak times. Nonetheless, with multiple swimming options such as pools, a lazy river, and a designated area for toddlers and babies, it proved more than sufficient for our family.
Lifeguards were often present, ensuring safety and the overall cleanliness and maintenance of the pool area were commendable. The pool’s proximity to the bar made refreshing drinks and ice cream convenient after a swim.
When swimming at L’Orée du Bois, it’s worth noting that French regulations can be particular about swimwear. They require tight-fitting swimwear like Speedos or Jammers for hygiene purposes. So, it’s important to pack the appropriate swimwear to avoid any surprises and ensure a pleasant swimming experience. Deviating from these regulations may result in being asked to leave the pool.
Attached to the campsite is Indian Forest, a popular tourist park offering thrilling activities for the whole family. There’s no shortage of adventure, from treetop climbing to laser games, walking trails, and bouncy castle parks.
During our stay, as we holidayed during the low season, we were even given 2 complimentary entries. This meant our 3-year-old could experience the tree-top climbing course designed for younger children. It was a fantastic adventure that left her eager to explore more climbing opportunities. We highly recommend trying it out while staying at the campsite.
The tree top climbing has a few different levels there are 3 “parcours” for the 3-6 year olds and then 7 others for those over 1m50. I would 100% recommend giving it a go if you are staying at the campsite.
Indian forest is also where the bouncy castles are situated. I was a little confused about the set-up of this and although we managed to access it for free, I’m unsure if this is always the case. The Sandaya Koolaya bouncy castle is in there too so I would have thought that it would be available to Sandaya guests at all times – but I’m just not sure. As well as the Sandaya bouncy castle there’s also a giraffe one and 2 giant dome bouncing things.
True to the Sandaya brand, this campsite offers a wide range of enjoyable amenities for guests.
Receptions and Check in
We were warmly welcomed at the reception, which is conveniently located at the front of the campsite. The staff members we interacted with were friendly and efficient. During check-in, the receptionist provided thorough explanations of essential information without overwhelming us. They registered our number plate for smooth access through the barrier and guided us via the map to our accommodation.
The main play park, located near the pool, impressed us with its modern design and suitable equipment for various age groups. The soft flooring made it ideal for our baby to crawl, and there were even outdoor gym facilities for adults.
The table tennis area, situated just outside the gates on the way to Indian Forest, featured numerous tables. However, please note that the gates tended to close early.
Multi Sports Area
The fully enclosed and netted multi-sports area is away from other facilities like the bar and pool, allowing for better noise control during active play.
The small arcade room, located near the bar, allowed us to keep an eye on the kids while enjoying a drink or meal. Please note that the arcade only accepts cash, so it’s advisable to bring your own change.
These were all situated in the Indian Forest zone. There were 4 different bouncy structures available. 2 large domes and 2 standard bouncy castles.
Kids Clubs & Facilities
Sandaya’s kids clubs cater to different age groups, starting at 5 and up. The first group is for aged 5-7, the next is 8-12 and then 13-17-year-olds have a teen club. During our visit, the younger groups were combined to accommodate 5-12-year-olds. Activities included horse riding, origami, and more. Teens had their own club with engaging activities like football, sweet hunts, and paddleboarding.
Animation for kids and adults
The campsite’s animation schedule offered a plethora of activities for the whole family. From aquagym and pilates to petanque, stretching, and football, there was something for everyone. In the evenings, they hosted mini discos, cocktail parties, quizzes, and even DJs for entertainment. We particularly enjoyed the mini disco and may have “accidentally” attended the welcome meeting, which led to plenty of free drinks.
Bars, Restaurants and Takeaway
The campsite’s bar and restaurant area captivated us with its rustic charm. My only gripe was that drinks can only be ordered through table service. This sometimes resulted in waiting periods for service and orders.
On our first evening, We needed a quick and easy dinner. The takeaway was a bit bizarre in that at lunchtime there was an extensive takeaway menu with paninis, fries and more yet at dinner time they only had pizzas. Or so the sign said. It actually turned out there was also some rotisserie chicken available in the evenings too – although they preferred if you pre-booked this. So we chose a few pizzas from the limited dinner menu, which turned out to be a delicious choice.
The takeaway staff were friendly, accommodating special requests, and made a cheeseless pizza for my mum, who dislikes cheese.
We also dined at the campsite restaurant on our third night, where the moules frites caught our attention. The sauce was lovely and the service was excellent but the Mussels were annoyingly all mangled. However, other menu items like the homemade lasagna received positive reviews from our party and we were all really impressed with the quality of our desserts. If we returned I’d definitely eat in the restaurant again but perhaps not have the moules.
The campsite shop was just off of the main barriers. It was fully stocked but in a very small room so was a little cramped. The shop lady was incredibly friendly and chatty. You could get pretty much everything you needed in the shop and I was very impressed with the prices.
Cyclo Trott, a bike rental company, operated just opposite the bar area, offering an array of bike options suitable for different needs. Renting bikes was a great option for exploring the surrounding areas, including nearby beaches, within cycling distance of the campsite.
L’Orée du Bois welcomes pets, and during our stay, we noticed that most guests had dogs. However, it’s important to check accommodation options, as certain mobile homes may not be suitable for pets. Additional fees apply for bringing pets.
Shower blocks, Laundry and Freezer
Numerous shower blocks were conveniently located around the camping emplacements. While some blocks seemed slightly dated, they were well-maintained. Many camping emplacements also had their own private sanitary blocks, which proved convenient for washing up. Two laundry blocks were available—one in a shower block and another among the mobile homes. The latter featured a bug garden and herb garden, providing a lovely spot to relax with a book while waiting for laundry. The machines provided inclusive detergent, saving the hassle of bringing your own.
Available accommodation at Sandaya L'Oree Du bois
Sandaya offers a diverse range of mobile homes and accommodations to suit various preferences. Additionally, for those preferring a camping experience, numerous pitches are available. We stayed in a 33m2 cottage for 6 people, which comfortably accommodated our (extended) family of me and Mike, our two girls and my mum.
Do You Need a Car to Get around?
Although it might be a bit tricky to reach the campsite without a car, once on-site, cycling is a great option for exploring the nearby attractions, including the beach, La Coubre Lighthouse, and Palmyre Zoo.
How to get to The Campsite
Should I hire a car?
If you are flying in then I would recommend hiring a car. There is always the option of taxis and transfers but then you would only be able to leave the campsite on foot or via bike. Some are ok with this – others are not.
I recommend taking the ferry to Saint-Malo for the least amount of driving in France. Le Havre, Caen and Cherbourg are other options but these will take a much longer time. I do not recommend Dover-Calais as this will involve a lot of driving (even though it’s a much cheaper crossing)
Day Trips from Sandaya L'Oree Du Bois
One of the highlights of our visit was the renowned Palmyre Zoo. This expansive zoo offers an incredible variety of animal species. While it’s an enjoyable experience for families, caution should be exercised, as our 3-year-old had a minor incident with an ostrich. Nevertheless, it’s a must-visit destination offering an up-close encounter with diverse wildlife.
While not exactly a day trip as it is part of the campsite, Indian Forest is open to external visitors as well. This adventure park features treetop climbing, laser games, walking trails, bouncy castle parks, and more. We had a fantastic time trying out the tree-top climbing course designed for younger children. The park also hosts various other inflatable bouncy castles, such as the Sandaya Koolaya and a giraffe-themed one, providing endless fun.
For families seeking an adrenaline rush, Palmyre Karting is an excellent choice. This go-karting center offers exciting races for all ages, allowing kids to experience the thrill of racing while parents cheer them on.
Just a short drive from Les Mathes, the vibrant seaside town of Royan offers beautiful sandy beaches, charming promenades, and numerous family-friendly activities. Families can enjoy beachside picnics, partake in water sports, cycle along the coast, explore the town’s shops and restaurants, or visit attractions like the Palais des Congrès or the Royan Zoo.
La Coubre Lighthouse
Situated near La Tremblade, La Coubre Lighthouse provides breathtaking panoramic views of the surrounding area. Climbing to the top offers a unique perspective and an opportunity to learn about its captivating history. The nearby beaches also make for enjoyable picnics and leisurely walks.
La Rochelle Aquarium
Located approximately an hour away from L’Orée du Bois, La Rochelle Aquarium is a captivating destination for families. As one of the largest private aquariums in Europe, it offers a fascinating journey into the underwater world. With its vast collection of marine life, including vibrant fish, sharks, sea turtles, and penguins, the aquarium provides an educational and memorable experience.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are the mobiles close together?
Is the campsite flat?
Are there mosquitos at Camping l'Oree du Bois?
Yes L’oree du Bois had quite a few mosquitos. Though, not as many as we had La Garangeoire a week later.
Is it easy to get a sunbed around the pool?
When we stayed the pool was very quiet and only about 3 other families were there. So yes, we had no problem. However, according to some reviews on Google in high season the pool area does get very busy.
Do you need to wear a wristband?
We did indeed. The children have a different colour from the adults so no underage kids will get served at the bar.
Do men have to wear swim trunks?
Of course they do.
Are there BBQs on site?
Charcoal and electric bbqs are banned however gas bbq’s are allowed and can be rented from the campsite reception.
What's the weather like in Spring/Summer?
It can be mixed in Spring but “should” be nice in Summer. Occasionally you’ll get the odd week of Summer where the weather is less than ideal but in general you can expect a good Summer holiday.
Can you park on your pitch/Emplacement?
Yeah we had no problem parking on our pitch, I think we probably could have fitted 2 cars on. However, there were definitely a few that required external spaces.
Can you take pets on the campsite?
Yes, dogs are welcome and they even have their own showers.
Where's the nearest supermarket?
We took a trip to a local Aldi supermarket 10 minutes down the road and found everything we needed in there. And just down the road from the Aldi there is also a Super U and an Intermarche.
My flight isn’t till late, can I stay on site after check out?
I can’t imagine there would be a problem with this. As long as you are packed up from your mobile and parked off of the camping emplacement. There is a visitor car park you could use outside the Indian Forest.
Is It Loud In The Evenings?
We didn’t find it loud at all during our stay. Our emplacement was quite far from the entertainment area though. Some reviews have said they found the campsite a little loud.
What Can We Do If It Rains?
La Rochelle Aquarium is around an hour away from the campsite and a great option if you are completely rained out.
Can I Use My Transferwise Card On SIte?
Cards are always welcme however you will need cash for the arcade.
This birthday trip to L’Orée du Bois campsite will forever hold a special place in our memories. From sharing tree-top climbing adventures with our daughter to embracing the overall campsite experience, we were thoroughly impressed. We struggled to find any significant drawbacks and were particularly pleased with the attention given to the campsite’s appearance and upkeep—typical of Sandaya’s commitment to maintaining quality campsites.
We enjoyed the facilities, entertainment, and culinary offerings, with our 3-year-old making new friends and finding delight in the mini disco. The local area and nearby beaches, including a cove with calmer waters ideal for little ones, provided additional enjoyment. The prospect of a shuttle bus to the beach during the summer season sounds excellent.
The spacious emplacements, well-maintained with climbing plants and palm trees, added to our satisfaction. We wholeheartedly recommend Sandaya campsites to everyone, as they consistently prioritize the appearance and atmosphere of their campsites, and L’Orée du Bois is no exception.
Without a doubt, we will return in the future, perhaps even opting for a tent next time.