The Pink Granite Coast

One of the most scenic coastlines in France is in Bretagne (Brittany), between Saint-Brieuc, west of Saint-Malo, and Perros-Guirec. That’s the Pink Granite Coast, or, as the French call it, ‘la Cote de Granit Rose.’ This remarkably beautiful coastline is quite different from the rest of Bretagne: the rocks have an incredible pink hue, right next to a turquoise sea and fine sandy beaches stretching for miles.  

My daughter Clara and I were returning from our visit to Mont Saint-Michel. I had driven for hours under the rain (it rains a lot in the winter in that region), but I had seen pictures of the Pink Coast and was intent on finding it. Clara wanted to go straight to our rented house in Roscoff. We exited at Perros-Guirec, a delightful sea town with picturesque views, and drove along the coast looking for a place to eat. I was hoping we’d both feel better after lunch.  

After a delicious meal of fresh local seafood, I got out my map and learned that we were near the Pink Coast, but it would take some walking to get there. Clara was not in the mood and said I probably wouldn’t find anything (why are teenagers so negative?). When we got to the end of the small access road I left her in the car and walked towards the beach, passing by a wooded area. The rain had stopped, it was bright and sunny again, and all of a sudden everything in front of me was pink, as far as the eye could see. It was quite a vision, like being in a painting. I was going to walk back to the car to get Clara to see it, but that was not necessary – she was right behind me. “Of course you found it,” she said, smiling. 

The view was spectacular: the coast was dotted with very unusual rock formations stretching for miles. Huge boulders of the purest pink color, piled high on top of each other, formed unusual designs. Some rocks were so uniquely positioned that I wondered how they could be free standing. Some even had names: one was ‘Napoléon’s hat,’ others were named after animals they resembled.

Claire decided to climb the rocks, as enchanted by the scene as I was. I took the trail along the coast and walked for some time on it, taking pictures. I had never seen something quite like that, it was magical. I don’t know how long we stayed there, but when the sun started to go down we decided to end our visit.

Back in the car, Clara said “you were right, it was wonderful.” I agreed wholeheartedly.

Clara on top of the rocks

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