The Vendée Globe race village remains a popular pilgrimage for hundreds of thousands of visitors who travel to Les Sables d’Olonne to see the 29 strong fleet of IMOCA race boats, the skippers and to enjoy the expansive, interactive displays.
In the first week since opening (from 15th to 23rd October), more than 300,000 visitors came to Port-Olona. This is more or less the same numbers as visited during the corresponding pre-start week in 2012. The fine weather, school holidays and the fast approaching date of the start means the crowds are increasing by the day.
Yves Auvinet, President of the SAEM Vendée, commented on these numbers: “Eleven days ago on 15th October, the Vendée Globe Village opened its doors in Les Sables d'Olonne for three weeks leading up to the start on 6th November. A place where people come and talk, the 2016 Vendée Globe Village enables visitors to discover the race and those involved with free access to almost all of the areas. The public were quite right to turn out in crowds during this first week to admire the 29 boats setting off around the world, meet the skippers and make the most of all the events and exhibitions in the Village…"