The town has a fine port and shipbuilding has long been an important industry. More recently, aircraft manufacture has become important; Airbus have a large factory in the town.
During World War II, the drydock at Saint-Nazaire was the only one on the Atlantic coast of German-held France that could repair large vessels such as battleships. British raiders put it out of commission in 1942 by ramming it with a destroyer (an old ship that had been built for the US Navy during World War I) packed with explosives; it was not repaired until 1947.
- Airbus Saint-Nazaire, Saint-Nazaire Tourisme & Patrimoine 3 boulevard de la Légion d’Honneur France, ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. Generally on Wednesday and Friday; extra visits during French school holidays. A must-see for any aviation enthusiast, tours meet at the submarine base and you board a bus to be taken to the Airbus plant. Inside you'll see various stages of aircraft manufacture and different processes will be explained. Tours available in English. Free up to 4 years; €7 age 4-14; €14 full price.