We are in Cap Fréhel, the last of our stops in Brittany for this season. We’d first made a visit here last year on a day trip from Rennes, seeking relief from a heat wave. What a glorious escape that was. The bracing morning mist had hovered over the heathery hills, the ocean barely perceptible below, to lift with clear sunshine and a refreshing breeze by noon. Inland, the hamlets of granite Breton houses with blue shutters and hollyhocks growing madly in every crevice emanated cool calm.
So we had to return. And it turns out last August was exceptionally hot, and this year it has been exceptionally cloudy and rainy.
Nevertheless, we’ve had enough lovely weather to spend a lot of time walking on those heathery hills. On the inclement days, we’ve visited historic towns like Lamballe and Moncontour. We drove to Rennes, our old haunt from last summer, and saw our friends Ruth and John. And now the weather forecast is in the 70s F and sunny for days on end.
This part of Brittany, the Cote d’Armor, is significantly more popular than the more remote Crozon Peninsula and southern Finistere regions. Parisians occupy the Belle Epoque resort towns of St. Lunaire and Saint Briac sur Mer (you can tell they are Parisians because unlike the Bretons they don’t greet you with a civil “bonjour”). August is also peak season, which accounts for local beach parking lots being full by mid-morning. We don’t find the tourist presence overwhelming, however. Compared to even Cannon Beach in Oregon, it’s pretty quiet around here.
Mornings I am often on the Sentier des Douaniers, part of the afore-mentioned GR34 path along the entire Breton coast. It’s a couple of minutes’ walk from our rental, and it takes me to the remnants of one of the old quarries that hauled out the Grès Rose stone, responsible for the pinkish hue of the area houses.
Generally speaking, we daily visit a point of interest then stop by a market and a café before coming home for a late lunch and down time before our late afternoon picturesque walk. Yesterday was hot — 76F — enough for a long day at the beach in my wetsuit getting tossed by the waves.
If that’s not enough, there’s always the option of an evening drive down back roads and a stop at the local microbrewery.
It’s difficult to imagine having had a more perfect summer in France.
Very pretty images especially the beaches and the museum window views 🙂 I’m so happy you are enjoying the Frehel! It seems peaceful.
Sent from my iPhone so please excuse the brevity
Kathleen, it was great to spend time with you and Dave this summer. Very pleasant, quite memorable warm and fuzzy
OK – let’s gamble a tiny bit — I’ll bet at least half the people reading your blog laughed when they read:
“Yesterday was hot – 76F ” Someone from Phoenix would not e able to restrain themselves!
Sent from Mail for Windows 10
Wonderful to read your last line! We’re happy to think of you two rambling this exceptionally beautiful corner of France. A description once applied to the Lozère also may apt for this part of Brétagne: “havre de paix et de tranquilité.”
That’s it, Ted.
Your photos and description of Brittany are enchanting. I’m so glad you both have had such a great summer. We look forward to seeing back in Nice in October. Our summer trip to LA and Tulsa is coming to an end. It’s been so nice to visit family and catch up. LA is so authentically fake but original at the same time. Going to see Pink Martini at the Hollywood Bowl with Booker T—a great way to close out our SoCal trip. Enjoy your September and see you both soon.
Thank you, Cicely. I miss you and David. Yes, LA is “real fake” but something to experience for sure. Pink Martini was in Brittany but too far from us. We love them. See you in October.