Ré, treasure island…

Zohéé - Island

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Loix - Ré, une note de mystère
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Pedestrian itinerary only. The Fosse de Loix portion is not adapted for cycling.

Greetings, mateys ! Look at what I found at the Quillet workshop, among the old parchments that are being restored… a treasure map! And it led me right to this very spot!

Free car park at : N 46°13.325' / W 001°26.517'


Saint-Catherine’s church (N46°13.449’ / W001°26.288’)

Maybe you should ask the local’z if they have heard anything about a treasure, Zisséo…

Ask me ! I know everything there is to know about the city of Loix ! This church, for example. In the 19th century, it had to be rebuilt and enlarged to fit all of the town’s inhabitants. So it lost its classical Eastern-Western orientation, to open up southwards. Did you know that Saint Catherine was the patron saint of castaways?

That’s a strange inscription above the door…

It dates back to 1905 ! With the separation of churches and the state. Back then, the law stated that church property was to become state property. Some churches were even used as town halls. That explains the inscription.

What famous French republican motto is written above the church door ?

  1. Vive la république, vive la France (Long live the republic, long live France)
  2. Liberté, égalité, fraternité (Liberty, equality, fraternity)
  3. Loix est dure, mais c’est la loi (The Loix is the law)

Write down the number of the correct answer.

Write this digit down. It is the equivalent of A : A =_____

Cross place du Marché to get to rue du Communal.

Rue du Communal (N46°13.381’ / W001°26.219’)

Zabeth, I’m looking for a treasure, hidden somewhere in Loix. Do you know if…

A treasure ? Say no more ! Follow me to the port, I’ll show you where it is.

From here, it’s best to take rue du Communal. It’s a typical île de Ré street, with hollyhocks, spurges and acanthuses… In some spots, the streets get wider to form tiny squares with wells on them. These are called « quéreux ».

Agnès Boulloche, a local artist, designed lovely street plates. An apple, a peach… what other fruit is represented on the Communal street plate ? Count the letters in this word.

Write this digit down. It is the equivalent of B : B =_____

At the end of rue du Communal, turn slightly to your left, then right into rue du Passage.

The port is just down the street !

Have you noticed how all the houses on the island look alike ? They are low, which protects them from the wind, and white, which is a reminder that in the old days, the houses here used to be whitewashed. At the foot of certain cliffs, you can see a black strip.

That’s what we call « coaltar ». A type of tar used by sailors to make their boats water-resistant. It also stop water from filtering into the island’s houses.

The tide mill (N46°12.956’ / W001°26.328’)

Go to the wooden footbridge N 46°12.972' / W 001°26.365'. and you’ll see something quite original : a tide mill. It’s a private property, so please stay on the footbridge.

Zisséo my dear friend, allow me to introduce you to the treasure of Loix !

I don’t see a treasure chest Zabeth…

A chest ? Don’t be silly ! I meant the tide mill. It’s the only one on the island that is still in good condition. It was built in the 18th century and used to be a flour mill. The strong tide would activate its wheels, and the mill was used to grind grains into flour.

Tide mills were also used to regulate the water level in marshes. Just like flushing a toilet! Woosh!…

Zohée, please… In the 19th century, the tide mill was transformed one last time. It was used to wash salt ! The grime that built up in its mechanism was used for fishing razor clams.

Look at the tide mill from the port. How many openings (topped with Roman arches) is the mill’s salt marsh water regulation mechanism sheltered under?

Write this digit down. It is the equivalent of C : C =_____

At N 46°12.996' / W 001°26.343' take the path along « la fosse de Loix, » towards the next step.

The salt marshes (N46°13.017’ / W001°25.917’)

Hmmm… talk to the local’z she said… and for what result?! From now on, I’ll just have to trust my own instinct ! Thanks for nothing Zohée… Now about finding that treasure chest…

Our gold is white Captain. That’s the name we give to salt around here! White gold… since it used to be rare and precious. The Atlantic, facing the marshes, forms what we call « la fosse de Loix », where many ships used to lie at anchor.

During the golden age of the salt trade, Loix was a major port. They say that ships on their way to fish for cod in Newfoundland would come here to stock up on salt. That’s right ! Salt was used to preserve fish !

From where you are standing, what part of the landscape can’t you see ?

  1. The tide mill (at the tip of the port)
  2. The salt marshes
  3. Fosse de Loix
  4. The Phare des baleines lighthouse

Which one can’t you see?

Write this digit down. It is the equivalent of D : D =_____

Eyelets (N46°13.071’ / W001°25.499’)

Salt marshes are formed by ponds called « eyelets », in which the sea water penetrates. The heat from the sun makes the water contained in the eyelets evaporate, forming crystals… the coarse salt that remains is collected using large rakes called a « simoussis ».

The salt-worker has asked me to open the valves to let the water into the eyelets. Would you please give me a hand ?

Zouti, have you ever found a treasure at the bottom of the marshes ?

I’ll tell you if you give me a hand, mate !

How many black valves are there between the the salt-worker’s house (« maison du saunier »), located at the extremity of the ponds, and the next crossroads N 46°13.103' / W 001°25.300'? Only count the ones at the extremity (cabin side).

Write this digit down. It is the equivalent of E : E =_____
In the table of 3, this number comes after the answer you found for « B ».

The last valve (N46°13.159’ / W001°25.125’)

There’s just one last valve to open to let the seawater in…

Find the « Cardinaud » label on the valve (ocean side). It has a serial number on it. Add the 5 digits together to get a two-digit number.

Write this number down. It is the equivalent of F : F =_____

There ! And now, to answer your question, no. I never found a treasure in the marshes. But I’ve heard of such a treasure… They say it sank out in the open sea a long time ago.

Probably during the battle of Feneau bridge! In the 17th century, île de Ré was the scene of conflicts between the English and the French. The English came to help the Protestants of La Rochelle. They were defeated by the French near the « Fosse de Loix ».

Maybe one of the ships sank with its hold chock full of gold? I’ll check the shore to see if any coins washed up…

At the crossroads N 46°13.435' / W 001°25.122' turn left into Chemin de la Levée du Groin. Then head towards the next step.

Grouin point (N46°13.429’ / W001°25.523’)

Isn’t it lovely here, friend’z ? ... Did you know that « pointe du Grouin » and « Fosse de Loix » are registered wildlife zones (« Zones naturelles d’intérêt écologique, faunistique et floristique »?

Several species live here… Food is abundant for birds and the ponds are quite shallow. See if you can spot a Black-winged stilt. These black and white birds are easy to recognize with their long red legs.

Not a treasure in sight…

According to the sign, how far is it (in kilometres) to Grouin beach (plage de Grouin) ?

Write this digit down. It is the equivalent of G : G =_____

At the end of the lane, turn right into rue des Alouettes. At the end of the street, turn left onto route du Grouin.

The « crafts village » (N46°13.672’ / W001°25.811’)

Zisséo ! You can always buy a souvenir, even if you can’t find the treasure…

Shhh, Zéchopp. You’re going to upset him…

The crafts village of Loix has about 20 shops and trades directly linked to the island’s heritage. A soap shop (La savonnerie), « l'Abeille de Ré », Paul Georgelet’s goat farm and cheeses ...

Find the soap shop (« Savonnerie Artisanale de Ré »). What type of milk is their soap made with ?

  1. Bubalina milk
  2. She-ass milk
  3. Goat’s milk

Write this number down.

Write this digit down. It is the equivalent of H : H =_____

At the end of route du Corps de Garde N 46°13.762' / W 001°25.764' turn left and follow the path.

Pas de la Contre-Ordre et de la Vette (N46°13.762’ / W001°25.983’)

Another beach ! The treasure is bound to be here somewhere!

Here you can spot the « Bûcheron » sand bank, when the tide is low! Far over to the left, you can see the gateway to Ré, and a little further… the Vendée area.

Zarthus ! We are looking for a treasure that sank out in the open sea during the battle of Feneau Bridge…

A treasure, did you say ? The only thing they found here is a canon from an English ship. You can see it standing proudly in a park in Loix… I can take you there if you like…

Before you go, add 1 to the answer you found for D

Write this digit down. It is the equivalent of I : I =_____

Walk along the beach then turn left into the street N 46°13.728' / W 001°26.399'. Take your second left into Rue du Moulin. At N 46°13.561' / W 001°26.226' take a few steps into impasse du Moulin.

The mill (N46°13.510’ / W001°26.233’)

The mill is a private property. Please admire it from the street.

Over here, friend’z ! The park I was telling you about isn’t much further… Before we go, have a look at the amazing mill! The bush at the entrance is donkey-shaped! The mill’s owner trims it that way and he even puts underwear on the donkey in the summer!

Besides water mills, there were also windmills on the island. What part of this windmill is still visible today ?

  1. Its blades
  2. Its roof
  3. Its wall

Write down the number of the correct answer.

Write this digit down. It is the equivalent of J : J =_____

The cache !

No treasure here either !

Wait a minute Zisséo… Hey, isn’t that… ?

« Attention geocaching friends ! No need to lift rocks, pick walls apart, or uproot plants... the cache is most likely there, right before your eyes! Remember that your quest must remain environmentally friendly ! Thank-you ! »

If your answers are all correct, the cache’s GPS coordinates will be green on the app. Click on “locate the cache” then let the app guide you!

Cache coordinates: N46°13.(E-I)(F/J)(D-A)’ / W001°26.2(B-C)(GxH)’
 The mystery word is written in the log book, inside the container

Well done, you have found the cache!
See you soon for more adventures!

Contact :

Destination Ile de Ré - Bureau de Loix
Place du Marché
17111 Loix
05 46 09 00 55

Terr'Aventurers' comments

22 jan 2022

Jpkrakaris has found the cache

jolie promenade sur les bords de mer

22 jan 2022

Livia Arnaud has found the cache

ballade très fraîche sur le front de mer

19 jan 2022

Granck33 has found the cache


16 jan 2022

Theolola has found the cache


16 jan 2022

Unicorn79 has found the cache

mplc du brouillard mais belle balade

16 jan 2022

Ft79 has found the cache

dommage d'avoir eu du brouillard.

15 jan 2022

Familly 17 has found the cache

gagné 😁

15 jan 2022

Team niboux has found the cache

frais et brouillard mais super balade !

15 jan 2022

Odre86 has found the cache

top pour notre 1ere fois malgres le brouillard :)

15 jan 2022

Atuwa has found the cache

Très jolie petit village.