Monday, 20 June 2011


Brittany is renowned for its cycling. It also rivals our West Country for cider offering some good local brews. Unless visiting the coast, it has pleasant rolling hills, artichoke fields, good restaurants for lunches and there is a timeless feel about the area. Cyclists we met ranged from a manic enthusiast who cycles 250km a day to groups out on their mountain bikes. At Vannes, we stayed in a former nunnery still run by the church and the pictures below show a Gite d'Etaps, a local hostel that provides food and has a bar.

We travelled three days sadly in the rain and one day it was windy so the area did not look at its best. Mostly buildings are traditional but the new house below in the shape of a dome was inspired with its woodland location.

We discover that lots of English people have made their homes in the rural centre of Brittany. They do not seem to be wealthy Brits with second homes but are less well off people who have moved to the area permanently.

Brittany shares a common language with the Cornish, Welsh, Irish and Scots who speak Gaelic. The Bretagne language is near enough the same. We spend a pleasant evening at the Gite discussing cider, Bretagne language, cycling and fishing.

There is a timeless feel about this holiday group encountered on a long distance cycleway.

We reached Roscoff at 07.30 this morning to catch our ferry back to Plymouth. I have calculated that our distance was 754 miles and we had 13 cycling days. We had two afternoons off.

My best bits were the wildlife areas in the coastal plains and the Vendee forests. I did not like the traffic in Bilbao and on the French/Spanish border.

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