Brittany travel guide

Everything you should know before planning a holiday in Brittany, at a glance.

When go, the best sights and attractions, food and drinks not to miss.
And the best boutique hotels in Brittany bookable online, just a click away.  

Settled by migrants from Britain in the post-Roman period, Brittany has a unique culture with its own distinct language and history. 

Brittany's rugged, rocky coastline contains countless small, tranquil inlets as well as larger bays and estuaries. There's more to Brittany than its spectacular coastline and sandy beached, however: towns with tall medieval walls are reminders of an age when Brittany had to defend itself against France, while inland valleys offer peaceful walks through woods that once covered the whole landscape. 

Everything you should know about Brittany, at a glance. 


When to travel to Brittany

Locals say that in Brittany is the only place where the sun rises five times a day, and truth is when it does the colors are simply mind blowing. Never the less Brittany's climate is on the cool side. Crowds tend to stay away during these months, only really returning during the summer. This means that choosing the time of your holiday in Brittany is a balancing act. During July and August, the weather will be warmest, but crowds will similarly be heaviest. The early part of the tourist season – which runs from March to October – is a good time to visit, although visitors who want to swim in the sea will need a wetsuit. Outside of the tourist season, the weather could be defined as… invigorating – to say the least. 


Climate


Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

Average Temperature
°C 8 8 9 11 14 16 18 18 16 13 10 8
°F 46 46 48 51 57 60 64 64 61 55 48 46













Average Rainfall
mm 54 58 43 42 44 33 38 26 24 57 51 62
Days 17 14 15 14 12 11 12 11 10 16 17 16

Sights and attractions in Brittany

Historic cities and harbor villages are one of the main attractions for organizing a holiday in Brittany. The walled medieval town of Saint-Malo has been carefully reconstructed following damage during the Second World War. A walk around the walls provides stunning views of the harbour as well as of the historic city. Another beautiful historic town is Vitré, with its striking medieval castle and well-preserved 15th century houses and churches. Brittany is also famous for its prehistoric standing stones, the most remarkable of which are found in and around the village of Carnac. Outside the cities, Brittany's ever-changing landscape makes for beautiful walks and drives, either along the winding coastal roads or the gentle river valleys of the interior.

Local festivals are a great time to visit Brittany. For instance, during the Festival des Tombées de la Nuit in the town of Rennes, streets fill up with entertainers who perform for locals and tourists. For many people, of course, the real appeal of Brittany are its beaches, whether busy tourist destinations like the small plage de St-Guirec near Ploumanac'h or remote natural beauty spots like the beaches along the estuary near l’Aber Wrac’h.

Main cities of Brittany: Rennes, Fougeres, Saint-Malo, Dinan, Quimper, Brest

Main attractions of Brittany: Nantes Cathedral, Belle Ile, Saint Malo historic city, La Pointe Saint Matthieu, Golfe de Morbihan, Carnac, Paimpont forest, Carnac, 

Most beautiful villages of Brittany: Le Faou, La Gacilly, Perros-Guirec, Locronan, Rochefort-en-Terre, Saint-Suliac, Moncontour

Food and drinks of Brittany

Brittany's rocky coastline is dotted with fishing villages, and the region is famous for its seafood, particularly shellfish. Other culinary specialities include the famous Breton crepes.

  • Shellfish
    Mussels and oysters are two of the foundations of Breton cuisine, and some fishing villages are dedicated solely to cultivating them. Other species of shellfish such as bigorneau or sea snails are also considered local delicacies, although the small size of these creatures means that they have to be removed from their shells with a pin.
  • Cider and beer
    Like their Norman neighbours, the Bretons tend to produce cider rather than wine, although the southern part of the region is home to some very good white wines. Cider is traditionally served in a bowl rather than a glass. Brittany is also one of France's most important beer-producing regions, with a tradition dating back to the 17th century. Other popular Breton drinks include the potent Chouchen, made from fermented buckwheat honey. Breton cider replaces white wine in the kir breton, creating a drink with a robust, fruity flavour.
  • Crepes and galettes
    The universal symbols of Breton cuisine are crepes and galettes. Crepes are sweeter and often served with butter or with lait ribot, a Breton form of buttermilk. Galettes, made from buckwheat flour, are saltier than crepes and can be served with foods such as sausage or bacon.
  • Other regional specialities.
    Other Breton specialities include kouign amann (“butter cake”), a sugary cake based on bread flour and typically served slightly warm. Another characteristic Breton pastry is far breton, a distinctive regional prune cake. Kig ha farz is a hearty dish in which several different types of meat are simmered in broth together with buckwheat dumplings. 

About

Size: 34,023 square kilometres 
Population: approximately 4,475,000 people 
Capital city: Rennes
Provinces: Côtes-d'Armor, Finistère, Ille-et-Vilaine, Morbihan
Landscape: Wooded valleys, winding rivers, rocky coastal headlands, rolling hills


Places to stay in Brittany

Les Costans

Les Costans

Perros-Guirec, Les Costans
La Désirade

La Désirade

Belle-Île-en-Mer, La Désirade
Manoir Dalmore

Manoir Dalmore

Névez, Manoir Dalmore