Île de Ré (“IDR” going forward) is a popular vacation island just of the coast of La Rochelle. IDR is very popular with the French, especially Parisians, and has been referred to by numerous travel insiders as the Martha’s Vineyard of France. I took a day trip from La Rochelle to the main town on IDR, Saint-Martin-de-Ré (“Saint Martin” for short) in June. Saint Martin is the largest and most popular of 10 communes on IRD. St. Martin is located in the center of IDR on the Atlantic Ocean, although it does not have a beach. For that, you will have to rent a bicycle and travel to a neighboring town. Saint Martin dates back to hundreds of years and is surrounded by a fort constructed by Louis XIV’s engineer, Vauban!