One of France’s most rugged regions, Brittany is a fascinating blend of spectacular coastline, ancient towns, magical islands and inland woods. When you journey through this western peninsula you will discover a people whose language, customs and dress remain a vivid homage of their past.

So it is no wonder that Brittany is one of France’s most popular self catering holiday destinations for both the French and foreigners alike. 3 million French and 700,000 foreigners flock there every summer!

It is easy to see why so many Brits book holiday rentals there because it is well connected to the UK via ports at Roscoff and St-Malo in Brittany and Cherbourg, Caen or Le Havre in the neighbouring region of Normandy. Airports at Brest, Nantes and Dinard link Brittany to Paris and London and trains from Paris take between two and four hours to reach the main towns of Brittany.

Brittany was a separate country created when Cornish people fled there to escape invasions by the Anglo Saxons. It wasn’t until 1532 that it became a part of France. Nowadays Brittany celebrates its Celtic differences in food, drink, architecture and culture and you can also still hear the Breton language used.

1,875 miles of Atlantic coastline can be found in Brittany, that’s 25 percent of Frances total coastline! The north coast comprises of chocolate box harbours and secret coves; the south coast has stretches of sandy beaches and wide estuaries and the west coast is all rocks and striking cliffs.

Finistere, on the west coast, has a large number of lighthouses and Brittany as a whole has a third of all French lighthouses. The inland areas of Brittany are made up of lakes, moors, woodlands and fields.

The area is popular with walkers, campers and camper vans, plus of course, cyclists. Brittany is a low lying country with no road tolls and little if any traffic congestions. Also you can partake in all manner of water sports, sailing, canoeing, canal boating and fishing.

The town of Rennes, with its well established university is the capital of Brittany and also its largest city, with Brest coming a close second.

Cote D’emeraude, Saint Malo is a very popular destination. Built in granite rock in the English channel, the bathing resort of Saint Malo is known for its castle, the cathedral of Saint Vincent and its 14th century ramparts which overlook the sea. Saint Malo is the birthplace of famous French writer and statesman, Chateaubriand.

Pink Granite Coast, sunset is the best time to explore the headland of Arcouest and the island of Brehat and admire the expanse of sandy beaches and the rusty rock formations in splendid hues of pink which give this coast its name.

The Parish Closes of Thegonnec, Guimiliau and Lampaul – Guimiliau, which were built as early as 1532 are symbols of Brittany’s Catholic and Celtic heritage. These granite religious structures are an intimate mesh of skilled craftsmanship and imagery. Churches, altarpieces and crosses are adorned with elves, Gods and fairies carved in wood.

Quimper/ Pont-Aven – Located in the heart of traditional cozyturtlerv Brittany and flanked by the Odet and Steir rivers Quimper is famous for its Faience ceramics which have been produced by skilled craftsmen since the 17th Century. The gothic cathedral of Saint Corentin has exceptional 15th Century stained glass windows.

Carnac, Gulf of Morbian, one of the foremost prehistoric centres, the second seaside resort of Carnac is famed for its Megalistic remains from the Neolithic period. In addition to 2792 Menhirs, massive stones erected by tribes who inhabited the region before the arrival of the Gauls, the area is studded with burial places, semi circles and tumuli.

Belle Ile ( ” Beautiful Island” ) is Brittany’s largest and it is located ten miles off the southern coast. Buffeted by storms and fringed by rocky cliffs, it is an isolated natural paradise whose inhabitants are known for their hospitality. The medieval city of Vannes at the head of the Gulf Morbihan is a perfect base from which to explore this magical inland sea and its many islands.