The Parish Closes (Les Enclos Paroissiaux) of Brittany

On a visit to Bretagne (Brittanny), in France, my daughter Clara and I saw two of the best-known Parish Closes of Lower Bretagne: Saint-Thégonnec and Sizun. They were stunning monuments to the religious fervor of the 16th and 17th centuries, and a reminder of the enormous wealth brought to the region by the linen trade.Continue reading “The Parish Closes (Les Enclos Paroissiaux) of Brittany”

LÉHON, Brittany – a pretty surprise in France

Have you ever been to a place so beautiful, so peaceful and relaxed that you felt like never leaving it? I have, and that place for me was Léhon, a small French medieval village near Dinan, in Bretagne (Brittany), France. I arrived there after a 30-minute walk, following a trail from Dinan. It was aContinue reading “LÉHON, Brittany – a pretty surprise in France”

DINAN, France – a true Breton town

With only two days left in Bretagne (Brittany), I had heard enough about Dinan to be curious. So I looked on the map, made a hurried hotel reservation, and drove 110 miles inland from Roscoff to the Côte d’Armor region, where Dinan is located. When I arrived in Dinan it was market day, and IContinue reading “DINAN, France – a true Breton town”

North Finistere, Brittany – sea and sky

Driving west along the coast of Bretagne (Brittany) in France, from Roscoff to the end of the province, I noticed a drastic change in the landscape: the region called North Finistère is far less populated than its eastern part, where St-Malo is located. The North has open spaces, deserted beaches, lighthouses guarding jagged reefs andContinue reading “North Finistere, Brittany – sea and sky”

Morlaix, France – an architectural jewel

While vacationing in Bretagne (Brittany) with my daughter Clara, in February of 2017, we stayed in a rental in Roscoff, on the English Channel coast. But we often drove to Morlaix, a historic Breton town 15 minutes away, a place we felt attracted to from the first time we saw it. Morlaix had a very livelyContinue reading “Morlaix, France – an architectural jewel”

Roscoff, France – a town of the sea

Of all the off-the-beaten-path places most Americans miss, few have so much to offer as Roscoff, a quaint port on the English Channel, in Bretagne (Brittany), northwest of France. Some US travel guides don’t even mention it, which is a shame: Roscoff has gorgeous views, great cuisine, rich history and a central location that invitesContinue reading “Roscoff, France – a town of the sea”

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, rightContinue reading “The Pink Granite Coast”

Jacques Cartier, discoverer of Canada

Visiting Saint Vincent Cathedral, in Saint-Malo – a historic walled town on the coast of Brittany, France – I was intrigued by a marble sign on the floor. It was placed on the exact spot where, on April 20th, 1534, a seaman called Jacques Cartier knelt down to receive blessings from the local bishop, beforeContinue reading “Jacques Cartier, discoverer of Canada”

Saint-Malo, France – tragedy and survival

Our small and unassuming two-star Hotel San Pedro, in Saint-Malo, was a real gem and a great experience. That was because of Mireille, its owner and manager, who more than made up for the simple lodgings (although the location was great) by going out of her way to help her guests. She would start early,Continue reading “Saint-Malo, France – tragedy and survival”

Saint-Malo, France – pirates and seafood

I am a big fan of the south of France. But the first time I saw windy Brittany (Bretagne in French; Breizh in Breton), I felt my heart slowly switching allegiances, and I became a Bretagne lover. Bretagne is the name of the rugged northwestern peninsula of France, a land so completely different from theContinue reading “Saint-Malo, France – pirates and seafood”