Car Hire in La Rochelle
Car hire in La Rochelle makes exploring the Bay of Biscay easy. Tranquil islands, rolling vineyards and captivating beaches are all a short drive away. Rent a car in La Rochelle and get more out of your holiday – for less, with our cheap car hire deals in La Rochelle.
Where to Hire a Car in La Rochelle
Car hire at La Rochelle-Ville train station is available from Hertz and Sixt. The central location makes picking up your car easy if you're staying in town and only need to hire a car for a few days. If you'd rather hop off your flight and into your rental car, car hire at La Rochelle Airport is available from Sixt, Europcar and Hertz. Use our comparison tool to find the best car hire prices for your trip to La Rochelle now.
Tips for Driving in La Rochelle
Traffic in France drives on the right-hand side of the road, so be extra careful when you approach T-junctions. La Rochelle isn't just popular with Irish tourists, it's also a top destination during the summer months for the French. Watch out for congested roads, especially during August when there's an influx of visitors from Paris.
The French have a 'driving with due care and attention' law, which means you could technically be pulled over for eating at the wheel, applying makeup or fiddling with your phone. You don't need to carry a breathalyser in your car – although this was proposed a few years ago, plans to bring in a fine were officially shelved in 2013.
Note that you can be fined if you have a device that alerts you to speed cameras, so double check that this setting on your phone's sat-nav system are firmly switched off.
4 Easy Day Trips from La Rochelle
Best for relaxation – Île de Ré 40 minutes drive from La Rochelle, the Île de Ré is where the French glitterati head for their summer holibobs. Peaceful and pastoral, this gorgeous island is known for its rolling sand dunes and working harbour villages. Cycle tracks criss-cross the island, and there are plenty of spots to sip cool white wine and eat local seafood. Magnifique.
Best for beaches – Royan An hour and ten minutes to the south of La Rochelle, the seaside resort of Royan is famous for its gorgeous sandy beaches. The most famous is La Grande Conche. Free parking is available along the promenade and side streets, but arrive early to get the best spot.
Best for nature lovers – Marais Poitevin Natural Regional Park Beach not your thing? Head 50 minutes inland to one of Europe's largest marshlands. Known in France as the green Venice, the Marais Poitevin Natural Regional Park is criss-crossed with canals. Go for a punt, hike or cycle.
Best for families – Futuroscope This film-themed adventure park is in Poitiers, about 90 minutes drive from La Rochelle. As well as 3D and 4D cinemas, the park also has some innovative rides and attractions. Their partnership with Cirque du Soleil means there's something for all the family.