During the two-week road trip along the Brittany coast, we delved into the wonders of the Gulf of Morbihan and Côtes-d’Armor. The undulating Brittany peninsula stretches gracefully towards the vastness of the Atlantic Ocean, revealing a distinctive rugged coastline, notably the renowned Pink Granite Coast. This coastal gem is celebrated for its extraordinary blush-hued sand and rocks. As we meandered through Brittany’s landscapes, we were attracted by the presence of numerous prehistoric megaliths, adding a touch of ancient charm to our modern exploration.
Where we stayed
During the first week, our family enjoyed the comforts of a holiday house in Sarzeau. For the second week, we opted for a holiday house in Trélévern, situated in the north of Brittany.
Our road trip along the Brittany Coast included a visit to Mont St. Michel, a two-hour drive from Trélévern. To make the most of our time exploring this iconic destination, we adjusted our plans, staying six nights in Trélévern instead of the originally planned seven days. Additionally, we booked a night at the Mercure Hotel near Mont St. Michel. This change allowed us ample time to immerse ourselves in the beauty of Mont St. Michel.
As a thoughtful measure to reduce potential stress on our journey back to Germany, we spent an extra night at IBIS at Chalon en Champagne before concluding our road trip.
Itinerary for our road trip along Brittany coast
Our road trip plan along the Brittany coast is divided into two parts: one week for exploring the Gulf of Morbihan and the other week for discovering the Côtes-d’Armor region.
First week itinerary (Gulf of Morbihan)
- 1st Day: Saint-Gildas-de-Rhuys market, Cliff walking at Saint-Gildas, Port Navalo’s coastal path, Arzon, Moulin De Pen Castel, and Oyster farm (Pointe de I’Ours, Sarzeau)
- 2ed Day: Carnac standing stones and Quiberon peninsular round trip
- 3rd Day: Belle‑Ile, the beautiful island
- 4th Day: La Belle-Iloise fish cannery, Saint-Cado Islet, Swim at Plage Des Govelins
- 5th Day: Domaine de Suscinio, Salt Museum, and Salt marshes around Guerande
- 6th Day: Vannes old town
Second week itinerary (Côtes-d’Armor)
- 7th Day: Ville Close (Concarneau), Trélévern
- 8th Day: Ploumanac’h pink rock hiking trail, Port de Trébeurden, Île-Grande
- 9th Day: Trelevern
- 10th Day: Plougrescant peninsula, Treguier, La Roche‑Derrien, and Plage de Trestel
- 11th Day: Lannion and Château de la Roche-Jagu
- 12th Day: Paimpol, Abbaye de Beauport
- 13th Day: Dinan, Mont St. Michel (Overnight stay in Mercure Hotel)
- 14th Day: Mont St. Michel (Overnight stay in IBIS at Chalon en Champagne)
1st Day: Rhuys Peninsular
The locals offered a wide array of seafood, including oysters, shrimp, mussels, clams, crabs, periwinkles, and whelks. Apart from the seafood, you could also find other daily essentials like clothes and bags in the local markets.
Cliff walking at Saint-Gildas
Saint-Gildas has an array of well-maintained walking paths across the peninsula. Following a brief stop at the market, we took a cliff walk along the Pointe Du Gran Mont trail.
Port Navalo’s coastal path
The coastal path around Port Navalo meanders near the charming Côté Mer restaurant. This moderately frequented walking trail provides views of the Quiberon peninsula and the rugged coastline.
After a delightful lunch at Port Navalo, as we made our way back to our holiday house in Sarzeau, we made a short break in the small town of Arzon.
Moulin De Pen Castel
We carried on our journey along the northeastern part of the peninsula, and we came across a charming windmill house called Moulin De Pen Castel, which serves as a tidal power station. Intriguingly, inside the building, there is also an art gallery to explore.
Oyster farm (Pointe de I’Ours, Sarzeau)
Our holiday home landlord tipped us off about Les Fruits De Mer, an oyster farm near Pointe de l’Ours, Sarzeau. Unfortunately, the factory and its restaurant don’t open until 18:00. Nevertheless, we decided to soak in the breathtaking sunset views at Pointe de l’Ours to wrap up our day.
2ed Day: Carnac Stone and Quiberon peninsula
Carnac standing stones
Quiberon peninsula round trip
3rd Day: Belle‑Ile, the beautiful island
Belle-Île-en-Mer, the largest island in Brittany on the French Atlantic coast, is a picturesque haven with tiny harbours, pretty beaches, and sheltered coves surrounded by cliffs. During the off-season, we caught the earliest ferry at 8:15, reaching the island in just 45 minutes. Following our plan, we rented an electric car to explore the island.
Around lunchtime, we reached Port de Sauzon, a quaint fishing port. Spotting the just-opened Creperie Les Embruns, we couldn’t resist. The restaurant boasts an extensive selection of Galletes, a typical Breton food, both sweet and savoury.
4th Day: La Belle-Iloise fish cannery, Saint-Calo Islet, Swim at Plage Des Govelins
La Belle-Iloise fish cannery
The fish cannery in Quiberon has a long and storied history, specializing in the production of high-quality sardine and tuna products. These delectable offerings are primarily sold directly from the factory or its outlets. We took a quick guided tour and ended up spending nearly 200 Euros on a variety of canned fish products.
Saint-Cado (Île de Saint-Cado)
Saint-Cado islet (Île de Saint-Cado) in Morbihan is just a short drive from Lorient. Nestled in the heart of the Etel river, linked to the mainland by a legendary stone bridge, this village is a hidden treasure of Brittany. While it only takes around 15 minutes to stroll around the Saint-Cado islet, the magical setting of the landscape attracted us so much, we ended up spending a delightful two hours on this tiny treasure.
Swim at Plage Des Govelins
The weather was lovely, and it was still early in the afternoon. We spotted some locals taking a dip near the beach. Although the air was warm for autumn, the water, unfortunately, wasn’t quite on the same page. We attempted a quick swim, lasting only five minutes because the water was a bit too chilly for a prolonged dip!
5th Day: Domaine de Suscinio, Salt Marshes Museum, and Salt marshes around Guerande
Domaine de Suscinio
The trail from Suscinio Castle to the Atlantic Coast winds through a preserved natural area, featuring Suscinio Castle itself, a birdwatching platform, a stunning view of the Atlantic coastline, and a colourful lagoon.
Salt Marshes Museum
The Salt Marshes Museum in Batz-sur-Mer is a collection of information on the inner workings of salt pans, the rich history of Guerande salt, and an immersive journey into the life of a 19th-century salt worker.
Salt marshes around Guerande
The salt marshes around Guerande are vast! Crisscrossing streets offer convenient exploration of the area. We parked our car in the center, capturing sunset scenes over the salt marshes—a truly fabulous experience. During the summer, there’s an opportunity to join a tour, delving into the art of salt harvesting and visiting a salt pond with a knowledgeable salt harvester.
6th Day: Vannes old town
After days of nature exploration following our Brittany road trip itinerary, we longed for a more leisurely outing in Vannes Old Town. As the capital of Morbihan, the old town boasts a charming port, medieval architecture, delightful gardens, inviting squares, and a vibrant food scene to explore.
7th Day: Ville Close (Concarneau), Trélévern
Ville Close (Concarneau)
On our journey to the next house in Trélévern, we took a few hours of break at Concarneau and explored its fortified island, the Ville Close. The Ville Close is situated on a long island at the heart of Concarneau harbour. With its charming narrow streets, this walled town is just a stone’s throw away from the city and port.
As scheduled, we reached the vacation home at approximately 5:00 PM.
8th Day: Ploumanac’h pink rock hiking trail, Port de Trébeurden, and Île-Grande
Ploumanac’h pink rock hiking trail
One of the highlights of our road trip along Brittany’s coast was the incredible hike at Ploumanac’h on the Pink Granite Coast. The trail treated us to numerous viewpoints, offering glimpses of unique rocks emerging from the sea.
Port de Trébeurden
Following a seafood lunch at Plage de Trestraou, we ventured to Port de Trébeurden, located to the west of the small island l’Île Milliau. Unfortunately, as we reached the area in the afternoon, the tide had already submerged the pathway, preventing us from walking to the island.
With plenty of afternoon left to explore, we decided to turn our disappointment into excitement by heading to Île-Grande (Enez-Veur in Breton), an island situated on the north coast of Brittany, France. This island is connected to the mainland by a scenic road.
9th Day: Trélévern
Despite the rain, we made the most of our time by staying indoors at the holiday house. We engaged in lively board games and relished the fantastic sea view visible right from the comfort of our living room.
10th Day: Plougrescant peninsula, Treguier, La Roche‑Derrien, and Plage de Trestel
Le gouffre de Plougrescant
Nestled at Brittany’s northernmost point on the mainland, the Plougrescant peninsula is a beautiful part of the Pink Granite Coast. What makes this place truly unique is the Petite Maison du Gouffre, a quaint stone house wedged between two jagged rocks, creating an image that seems straight out of a fairy tale. Built in 1861, the house faces a serene saltwater pond.
The small town happens to be the hometown of St Yves, the patron saint of lawyers. Not only does it have a magnificent cathedral, but it also flaunts a pleasant harbour and charming half-timbered houses that trace back to the 15th century. For lunch, we chose for a local restaurant, where our friend, seeking culinary adventure, ordered the Chef’s Recommendation – the Andouille, a traditional sausage made from pig chitterlings, tripe, onions, wine, and seasoning. To our surprise, its unique aroma proved to be too intense for any of us to tolerate!
The heart of La Roche-Derrien beckons with its medieval half-timbered houses. For a scenic view, we headed to La Roche-Derrien’s pinnacle, the Chapel of the Calvary.
Plage de Trestel
The Plage de Trestel beach is expansive, white sands – a perfect spot for kite enthusiasts and joggers alike. Excitedly making our way to the beach, we were taken aback by the unusual sight of numerous “sandworms.” Upon closer inspection, we discovered these were trails created by worms beneath the sand. Quite a surprising encounter!
11th Day: Lannion and Château de la Roche-Jagu
Lannion has a mix of squares, charming cobbled alleyways, and unique houses, some with half-timbered structures or adorned with sculpted decorations, all reflecting the medieval vibe of the town. Interestingly, I discovered that Lannion is not just steeped in history but also hosts about a hundred modern high-tech companies and research centers. Quite a blend of old-world charm and cutting-edge innovation!
Château de la Roche–Jagu (Domaine de la roche jagu)
The Château de la Roche-Jagu, a remarkable 15th-century fortified house, is enveloped by a plethora of parks and gardens. As we strolled through dedicated pathways, we passed many sites, for instance, a tranquil forest area, an inviting oak grove, a flourishing vegetable garden, and even a medicinal plant garden. Not to forget the charming fishpond that adds to the charm of this historical gem.
12th Day: Paimpol, Abbaye de Beauport
The picturesque area of Paimpol is around its harbour and the winding streets of the historic centre. Along the harbourfront, restaurants offer an array of delectable seafood. For our lunch, we had a tempting seafood plate comprising crab, oysters, langoustines, clams, and more—all for a modest 38 Euros.
Abbaye de Beauport
Abbaye de Beauport stands as a testament to six centuries of religious history, covering over 100 hectares along the shoreline. It encompasses a diverse range of natural habitats, including reed beds, rocky shores, salt marshes, and marshland. Venturing further inland, the estate unfolds into a picturesque patchwork of woods, streams, and lakes.
13th Day: Dinan, Mont St. Michel
En route to Mont St. Michel, we seized the opportunity to explore Dinan, a charming market town renowned for its medieval ramparts, cobbled streets, and half-timbered houses. The ramparts are among the oldest and most impressive in Brittany. Unfortunately, a section of the ramparts was undergoing repairs and, regrettably, closed to the public during our visit.
Mont St. Michel
In the late afternoon, we arrived at the Mercure Hotel near Mont St. Michel. Despite the less-than-pleasant weather, we hopped on the shuttle bus to the castle hill and strolled along its charming stone streets.
14th Day: Mont St. Michel
In the early morning, we rushed to capture the morning beauty of Mont St. Michel. Following breakfast, we explored the island and toured the abbey. The place is brimming with picturesque spots, both on and around the island. Our stay on the island extended longer than planned, resulting in a late check-in at IBIS at Chalon en Champagne.
Travel tips for road trip along the Brittany coast
How to get around
For a convenient road trip along the beautiful Brittany coast, you’ll want a car—it makes getting to all those wonderful places so much easier. Parking is a breeze during autumn, and the best part is, it’s mostly free! Just remember to stick to the speed limits so your holiday stays stress-free and budget-friendly.
Where to stay
There’s no shortage of charming holiday houses along the coast. However, if you fancy using buses and trains to get around, it’s a good idea to base yourself in larger towns like Vannes, Dinan, Concarneau, and Saint-Malo.Booking.com