The coast of Brittany (Bretagne) is popular with vacationing Parisians, but it is relatively unknown outside of France. This is especially true of Americans, who often flock to Normandy without even thinking about a visit to neighboring Brittany.
However, by skipping Brittany, travelers are missing a unique part of France.
Why you should visit Brittany in 10 photos
Here are 10 pictures of Brittany that highlight a few of my favorite discoveries.
1. Charming villages
France is famous for villages that ooze charm, and Brittany has more than its share of them.
2. Beautiful cities
Urban charm isn’t confined to Brittany’s villages. The region also has some wonderful cities. One of my favorites is Dinan, which feels like a grown-up village.
(It’s even beautiful in the rain!)
3. Lively medieval festivals
Medieval festivals are popular throughout France, but a festival in Brittany has its own flair.
The medieval festival in Guérande is held within the walls of one of Brittany’s finest medieval cities, making it feel all the more like a trip back in time!
4. Elaborate local churches
Between the 15th and 17th centuries local parishes in Brittany had a competition of sorts to add the most elaborate features to their church. Because of this, it’s easy to find unexpectedly elaborate churches and church yards in even the smallest of towns.
5. Delicious food
With the bounty of the sea and produce from the garden readily available, dining in Brittany is a treat.
Looking for fast food? Try one of Brittany’s traditional galettes (a savory crêpe made with buckwheat flour) and a local cider.
6. Quiet rural roads
Driving in Brittany is generally a dream, with nearly empty roads that wind through the countryside.
(Don’t worry about getting lost and just enjoy the journey.)
7. Windswept beaches
Brittany has miles of beach and, unless you visit during the peak of the summer season, you will often have them all to yourself.
8. Dramatic coastlines
While much of Brittany’s coast is low and sandy, there are also areas with dramatic rock formations — the most unusual of which may be along the Pink Granite Coast.
9. Really high (and low) tides
Brittany’s tides are among the highest in the world. While this means beach-goers need to be aware of when the tide will come in, it also provides some interesting scenes in the region’s ports!
10. Old boats
While old boats may not be at the top of everyone’s list, I just love them. And there are quite a number of them in Brittany.
There’s much more to see in this small part of France, but I hope these images are enough to inspire you to plan your own trip to Brittany!