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Travel on great liners


You will understand the high technology and incredible logistics it takes to build the biggest cruise ships in the world… and you will feel quite small, surrounded by gigantic installations.

Birthplace of the giants of the seas

For more than a century and a half, ocean liners and now cruise ships have been the most prestigious ambassadors of Saint-Nazaire, bearing witness to an extraordinary know-how. Saint-Nazaire’s shipyard, which is renowned all over the world, opens its doors and allows you inside, as a privileged visitor.

We’ll take you by bus from the submarine base into the shipyard for a guided tour of a very dynamic, constantly evolving company. You will see the “streets” of the yard, the huge workshops and assembly docks, while high above you towers one of the most powerful gantry cranes in Europe. This is a place where industry becomes quite spectacular!

An outstanding industrial saga

The shipyard of Saint-Nazaire is one of the biggest and oldest in the world, and at the same time one of the most innovating. Everything is gigantic here: the assembly dock and the pre-assembly area are more than 900 metres long; the huge gantry crane is able to lift weights of up to 1,400 tons, i.e. ship sections which are as big as whole buildings. Maybe you will be lucky to enough to see it work.

When visiting the shipyard in Saint-Nazaire, you will:

  • Find yourself very close to the ships under construction, and understand what an outstanding industrial story has been writing itself here over the last 150 years
  • Gain privileged entrance to a “city within the city” for a firsthand experience of its gigantism and innovation
  • Understand all the stages of the shipbuilding process, from the arrival of the steel plates to the final outfitting.

Two ways of visiting the shipyard

Currently there are two ways of visiting the shipyard: a two-hour guided tour which is about all the aspects of the shipyard including the diversification towards marine renewable energy (the yard will build elements for offshore wind farms). This tour is called Chantier naval (Shipyard). It is available only in French.

And there is the guided tour Géant des mers (Giant of the seas) which lasts an hour and a half and is themed about the huge cruise ships currently being built and due to be built over the next years, as the shipyard’s order book is full to the rim. This tour is also in French, but English-speaking tours are organized in the summer. It can be combined with the visit of Escal’Atlantic, please enquire at the ticket offices.


  • Departure by bus from the submarine base, Saint-Nazaire, Ville-Port, boulevard de la Légion d’Honneur. Carparks nearby.
  • Public transport : the nearest bus stops are rue de la Paix + 7 minutes’ walk, HélYce line (every day); Ruban Bleu + 4 minutes’ walk; U2 and U4 lines (from Monday to Saturday).



  • The shipyard tours usually take place on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays, and on a daily basis in the holiday season. See dates in the online ticket office: tours in French, and tours in English (in July and August).


How much?

2017 prices
Full Reduced* Children age 4-14
14 € 12,60 € 7 €

*Reduced price (ID required): students, unemployed, disabled persons and accompanying person (if necessary), mini-groups of at least 10 tickets for the same visit, in a single payment.

Combination ticket “Saint-Nazaire’s giants of the seas” (guided shipyard tour “Géants des mers” + visit of Escal’Atlantic):

Combination tickets
Full Reduced* Children age 4-14
20 € 12,60 € 10 €



  • Guided tour, 2 hours (the “Chantier naval” tour) or 1 1/2 hours (the “Geant des mers” tour).
  • The tours are in French; English-speaking tours are organised in July and August (for the “Géant des mers” tour).
  • The details of the tour inside the factory and the contents of the visit may vary according to the company’s activity.
  • See special conditions for groups.
  • The shipyard tour is not accessible to disabled visitors.
  • During the shipyard tour you do not have access to the ships under construction.
  • Photographing and filming are strictly forbidden during the tour.
  • Booking procedure: ID details (name, nationality, date and place of birth) are required for each visitor.
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