Archive for April, 2019

April 23, 2019

Saint Philibert and the beaches near me!

Ok so moving alone in my beautiful Morbihan dept 56 of the region of Brittany/Bretagne or Breizh (Breton language) I like to show you a bit more of the goodies and lovely beaches we have here now that the season is getting nearer and planning is a virtue!

I am lucky perhaps to have so much near me next to the Atlantic coast with lovely beaches often overlook for those in the south and south east of France , however these ones here can keep up nicely in Summers. I have a wonderful choice of beaches that I have briefly mentioned in my other posts but like to tell you a bit more on Saint Philibert.

The town is really, believe me, best known for its megaliths stones that abound in this area going back milleniums without still knowing exactly how they got here. However, seldom the beaches are mention and they are very nice. Therefore,here is more on the beaches and goodies of the sea off Saint Philibert.

Saint-Philibert, is a  town  created in 1892 on territories that belonged to the town of Locmariaquer.   Here I come for my oysters and mussels, more below.

It is part of the community of towns of the Trois Rivières . Saint-Philibert has a total area of 7 km2; with average altitude of 10 meters. The neighboring towns are La Trinité-sur-Mer, Crac’h, Locmariaquer, Le Bono, and Carnac. The big city closest to Saint-Philibert is Vannes and is 20 km away (about 12 miles). The closest train station to Saint-Philibert is in Auray at 11 km( about 7 miles) (direct to Montparnasse Paris on TGV).

At Saint Philibert you have more megalith stones, more religious buildings from Chapels to Churches and of course the beaches. These are some of the best in the area; and we love it. The architecture is modern spacious home of the good living of my belle France.

The beaches are wonderful here  info can be found at Plages tv here in French:   https://www.plages.tv/station-balneaire/saint-philibert-56471

City of St Philibert on its beaches https://www.saintphilibert.fr/st-philibert/les-plages/

The local area tourist office of Morbihan on the beaches:  http://www.morbihan-way.fr/fr/page/saint-philibert-nautisme-et-plages

The  beach or plage de men er beleg is really nice ,secluded with nuts trees and good condominiums for rentals behind it.  In French you can see more of it on the plages tv webpage here, and more pictures : https://www.plages.tv/detail/plage-de-men-er-beleg-saint-philibert-56471

saint philibert

saint philibert

And, after further loading here from the real thing, we continue to see the splendid beaches of Kernevest ; these are gorgeous and not far from the first one above. Toilet facilities and parking in the pines in a wild environment. Just what the doctor calls for relax you are in heavens.  The plage de Kernevest are just that, more here:  https://www.plages.tv/detail/plage-de-kernevest-saint-philibert-56471

More in English from the Brittany tourist office official site here:  https://www.brittanytourism.com/offers/plage-de-kernevest-saint-philibert-en-1994147/

It’s the main beach and lovely with families and young crowd as well but quiet and beautifully serene facing the ocean and to your right the entrance to the harbor of La Trinité sur Mer.

Saint philibert

As promise at the start these are my suppliers and they are both good!! We passed by many oysters and mussels producers like those at Intrenn Passion at the corner of rue des presses and rue de l’océan; more here:  https://www.ostreiculteur-trinitesurmer-morbihan.fr/

Or a bit further the buying and tasting of oysters and mussels at Chez Jaouen , more here:  http://jaouenaquaculture.objectis.net/

saint philibert

One more webpage to share is the Golfe du Morbihan or Gulf of Morbihan with tourist info on all the towns around it and have it on Saint Philibert: Gulf of Morbihan on tourist sites such as St Philibert

And there you go another nice sublime gem of my lovely Morbihan to share with you.  And of course, pretty Saint Philibert. If in the area let me know; and why not come, this is great living by the sea. Enjoy it

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

 

 

 

April 22, 2019

Church Notre Dame de Victoire/St Louis at Lorient!

Ok this is one example of the multitude of choices and sights we have in my belle France. The place is only 30 minutes by car from my house, and visited several times; even in the Church, yet not written a post on it!!! Amazes me all the time! Well it’s time I tell you a bit more on the Church of Notre Dame de Victoire or St Louis of Lorient. Of course, this is in lovely Morbihan dept 56 of my lovely Brittany!

Let me go from the back forward on the nice sea town of Lorient. The town was created in 1666 and developed in the 18C following two axes from the paddock, one in the direction of Ploemeur, via the rue du Port, an another one towards Hennebont via the Rue Maréchal Foch. It is around the Church of St. Louis, which was in the extension of the Rue Maréchal Foch, that all the administrative, educational, social and commercial equipments are concentrated today.

The Church of St. Louis escapes the rule by being built along a north-west – southeast axis. The Church is elevated in the axis of old Rue du Morbihan (current Rue Maréchal Foch). Revamped several times, the Church is truly completed in 1830, with the construction of the Bell Tower. which also served as a flashing light.

The new Church of Notre-Dame-de-Victoire, the seat of the parish of Saint-Louis, is a church located in the center of Lorient. It was completed in 1955 after the bombing that had destroyed in 1943 the Church of St. Louis b.1810-30. It is the most important parish in the country of Lorient. The dedication to Notre-Dame-de-Victoire refers to the city’s English siége in 1746.  Made of concrete, the steeple culminates at 54 meters high, and is the highest point of Lorient. The access to its summit is done by means of a staircase of 270 steps.

lorient

lorient

Let me tell you a bit of history and details on it. Imposing Church right in the area we do our shopping!

The former St. Louis Church  was built between 1810 and 1830. A neo-classical style, it had a bell tower that dominated the city. In 1940, the Nazis occupiers created a very vulnerable submarine base in the Atlantic. Curiously, the Royal Air Force will only start bombing once the base is finished from 1943. Under the influence of the bombs, the Church of St. Louis will be so damaged that it was abandoned to restore it.

In 1953, the request was given to rebuild a church, 400 meters from the site of the old one. It will be inspired by neo-Byzantine art by creating a large dome above the nave. The development of the place Alsace-Lorraine, who’s Church occupies one side. The construction of the Church will span three years (1953-1955) and use materials and finishes in honor at the time, in other words the concrete left unsheathing.  The Church is placed under the patronage of Notre Dame de Victoire or Our Lady of Victory, but also, as the one she replaces, under that of St. Louis. Our Lady of Victory, very honored by the locals since the failure of the English siege of 1746, owns her statue in the Chapel of the Virgin.

Poor in ornamentation, this Church of Notre Dame de Victoire nevertheless possesses some interesting frescoes, works of Parisian and Breton artists. One will notice the great fresco of the apse illustrating the coronation of Virgin. The exterior of the Church also offers three stone statues ; Madonna and Child, Saint-Pierre-aux-Liens and Saint-Louis. The stained glass windows, are very succinct. The monumental porch, in the middle of the façade, is 12 meters high, it is adorned with a statue of Notre Dame.

As soon as the visitor enters the Church of Notre Dame de Victoire/St Louis , their gaze is struck by the chromatic contrast between the grey, almost uniform, of the nave and the rather yellow clarity of the choir. This was the will of the architects,  to create a nave without many stained glass and which must remain in the shadows so that the attention of the faithful is sucked by the light of the choir. To this end, a series of glazed screen walls borders the north and south sides of the sanctuary, almost from the ground to the vault.  The Entombment,  and the Annunciation show the chromatic dominance of the two frescoes is grey, as if it were not necessary at any price to detach themselves on the concrete elevation in the background, grey too. Admittedly, it is necessary to ensure the contrast with the choir, but a distracted visitor may very well not see them by doing the round of the nave.

lorient

The high Altar of the Church of Notre Dame de Victoire/St Louis is associated with the famous word of Christ, read in the Gospel according to Luke: “advance offshore, and throw your nets for fishing.” These words addressed to Simon-Peter are the prelude to the miraculous fishery. “Forward offshore” also appears on a banner clearly visible on the western façade of the Church. The side chapels are  two chapels each decorated with a large fresco. That of the Chapel of the Virgin traces elements of the life of Saint Louis, while that of the Blessed Sacrament Chapel  is rich with a biblical symbolism very removed.

lorient

lorient

In the Chapel of the Virgin throne the statue of Our Lady of Victory, (Notre Dame de Victoire) from 1850. The city of Lorient is meant to be under the protection of Saint Mary and this statue is the illustration. In 1746, during the war of the Austrian succession, when the city was besieged by the English, the inhabitants made a vow to the Virgin. A silver statue of Notre Dame was created. It will disappear in the French revolution and be replaced in 1850. In 1943, the statue was removed intact from the rubble of the Church of St. Louis, which was interpreted as a sign of the protection of Our Lady of Victory over the city. The Virgin sits on the city walls. From her scepter, she made depart the British leopard.

lorient

I keep writing the double name of Notre Dame de Victoire and Saint Louis because as the new Church was really given the name of ND de Victoire, the locals still refers to it as Saint Louis therefore ,the title of my post! ok It is worth the detour for the contrast of a modern Church to many old ones we have around here. Something to see other than sea boating museum activities in town,and shopping::)

lorient

Some webpages to help you plan your trip here are

City of Lorient and its heritage sites

Tourist office of Lorient South Brittany on Lorient heritage

Tourist office of Morbihan dept 56 on Lorient

Tourist office of Brittany on Lorient

And there you go, now come and see the nice Church of Notre Dame de VictoireSt Louis ,and lovely city of Lorient. It is worth a detour me think.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

 

 

 

April 22, 2019

Church Notre Dame de Kerdro at Locmariaquer!

So let me put you back near me and keep showcasing my area gems of my belle France. We are still in Spring but sunny just nice Breton weather!  Again passages of it but feel need to tell you a bit more in depth on these beauties.

Locmariaquer is a town in the Morbihan Department 56 of the region of Brittany . The town is located at the western mouth of the Gulf of Morbihan and has many beaches overlooking the Bay of Quiberon, western part of Mor Braz which opens access to the Atlantic Ocean.

locmariaquer

 The Church of Notre-Dame de Kerdro is a Romanesque style church, built between 1082 and 1120 by the monks of Quimperlé, the transept and the choir are the surviving elements. In 1548, Locmariaquer was attacked by the English fleet and largely destroyed. The Church suffers damage. It is re renovated new in the 17-18C as the construction of the nave, modification of the Romanesque parts; the Bell Tower is built in 1817. The west, north and south gates are built in 1835.

Locmariaquer

The Church of Notre Dame de Kerdro is done in a Latin cross, the intersection of which is a square tower of 1817 with a Bell Tower and a slate. The Romanesque apse is backed by four buttresses.. At the location of the southern one, a sacristy was built. The exterior walls of the Romanesque part, choir and transept, mounted in small archaic apparatus like cubic rubble, scattered bricks and rows of Roman bricks in re-use, are older 11C than the interior structure. The façade bears the Latin inscription “HIC Domus dei” or”here is the House of God“. The south gate is protected by a porch in advance; It is topped by a crest bearing the words “Haec Porta Coelli” or “this is the gate of heaven”.

Locmariaquer

The Church Notre Dame de Kerdro is covered with framing. It consists of a nave with three smaller naves 18C separated by full-arches worn by square piles, a transept and a Romanesque Choir 11-12C. The Cross of the transept opens with large double-roll arched arches worn by complex piles with engaged columns whose capitals are carved. It is covered with a wooden ceiling. The choir of two bays separated by a double arch falling on columns engaged in carved capitals is vaulted into a cradle. It ends in a cul-de-furnace the beautiful series of Romanesque capitals is adorned with stylised geometric and vegetal motifs. A marquee is carved from opposing Rams ‘ heads in angles.

Locmariaquer

Locmariaquer

The ornamention inside the Church Notre Dame de Kerdro includes a Blessed cowl included in the wall near the south entrance would date from the 15C. It is adorned with foliage and grapes. Each of the two crosses has an altarpiece topped by a painting, dating from the 17C. The table of the north brace represents the Annunciation, the one of the south the crosillon the Visitation. The twelve stained windows of the Church Notre Dame de Kerdro are equipped with contemporary stained glass, made in 1960.The motifs of the seven stained glass windows of the nave and the transept are abstract. The five stained glass windows of the choir represent images related to the region such as boats and fishing, ears of wheat (agriculture), letters NDK (Notre-Dame-de-Kerdro), bouquet of oyster-culture tiles, dolmen and menhirs (megaliths /stones).

Very nice Church and just around the port area with great seafood and views of the boats, nice indeed. Some webpages to help you plan your visit here are

City of Locmariaquer on Religious heritage

Tourist office of Morbihan on religious sites in Locmariaquer

Tourist office of Brittany on Locmariaquer

So there you go another gem indeed me think. And only 34 km from my house or about 21 miles. Enjoy Locmariaquer and the Church Notre Dame de Kerdro!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

April 22, 2019

Château de Josselin!

This is one of the towns of Brittany that we have visited the most. Its a lovely town by the Canal Nantes-Brest and the quant city center, and of course the main thing is the Château de Josselin. I have written plenty of posts on Josselin but feel the castle deserves a post of its own; so here it is.

Josselin

I have to start by saying is a must see in Brittany, part of the history of it and France lies here, and it has been renovated in good taste with the Dukes of Rohan still living in it! Of course all this is in the town of Josselin, dept 56 of Morbihan in the region of Brittany!

Josselin

The Château de Josselin  was built between 1490 and 1505, taking up many elements from the Louis XII style. It is one of the peaks of the Rohannais triangle of three great fortresses la Chèze, Josselin and Pontivy,  which is the center of the village of Rohan, the nominal fief of the House of Rohan whose castle is neglected for the benefit of the other three. The Castle is since its construction, the residence of the Dukes of Rohan.

josselin

A bit of history I like, and history it has!

Guéthénoc, cadet of the Ducal House of Brittany, Viscount of Porhoët, of Rohan and Guéméné, member of the family of the Counts of Rennes, would have left the feudal mound of Château-Tro in Guilliers to build in this place a first wooden castle around the year 1008. His son Goscelinus gives his name to the new fortress, castellum goscelini, from where Château-Josselin then Josselin, the casterly town that develops at the foot of the castle and offers a relative security.

josselin

In 1154, Eudon de Porhoët, stepfather, Regent and guardian of the young Duke of Brittany, Conan IV, brought together Breton Lords to deprive his son-in-law of his rights. He was defeated by Henry II Plantagenet, King of England and new Duke of Anjou, with whom Conan IV was taken refuge. Around 1170, Henri II personally directed the demolition of the Castle and planted salt to keep the walls in ruins. The fortress was raise from 1173 by the Viscount of Porhoët ,Eudon, an ally of the King of France. Then the Chatelaine passes to the hands of several large families foreign to Brittany. In 1370, it is agreed to cede Josselin, Castle and town, to Olivier V de Clisson in exchange for the Barony of Thuit, near Falaise (Normandy).

josselin

From the existing castle, Clisson built the best armed fortress of Brittany, a feudal enclosure of 4 500 m2, with a Chalet-residence and walls of 25 meters staked with nine towers and a huge dungeon of 26 meters in diameter and 32 meters in height. In 1389, Clisson was banned from the Kingdom of France and sentenced to death by Duke John IV. He takes refuge in his stronghold of Josselin but John IV does not delay to make the siege of the castle. The struggle with the Duke of Brittany will continue until his death.  After the death of Olivier de Clisson, the Château became the property of Alain VIII de Rohan ,heir to the Viscounts of Rohan, whose castle is about 20 km away, and who married Beatrice, daughter of Olivier de Clisson.

Josselin

In 1488, the Duke of Brittany François II took the Castle of Josselin and partially demolished it in order to punish John II of Rohan for his support of the French party against him. His daughter Duchess Anne de Bretagne restored it to John II, who, thanks to the incomes of the Chatelaine of Dinan and Léhon, he was gratified by Charles VIII in gratitude for his help in conquering the hand of the little Duchess (also Queen of France), can transform the Castle and build in the ramparts a Logis de Plaisance (pleasure house), which will be endowed with 1490 to 1510 of a beautiful façade of carved granite typical of the style Louis XII.

josselin

Banished from Josselin because of their adherence to Protestantism, the Rohan must let the Governor of Brittany, the Duke of Mercœur, make their Castle a base for the League opposite to the new King Henri IV. The war of Succession of Brittany gave him its military role during the episode of the combat of the Thirty in 1351 as from Josselin leave the thirty supporters of Charles de Blois (side of king of France) under the leadership of Jean de Beaumanoir. In 1455, the Viscount de Rohan rearranges the castle to install artillery,but the time of military concerns has passed.  Jean II de Rohan undertook important restoration work aimed at improving comfort. He rebuilt the Manor House and its beautiful façade on the northeast courtyard.

Henri II de Rohan, Chief General of the Protestants, transferred the siege of his power to the Château de Pontivy. During the wars of Religion, he rebelled against the Royal power. To punish him, Cardinal Richelieu had the dungeon dismantled in March 1629 , and three towers, but spared the Renaissance building.  In 1694, after the battle of Camaret, the Castle of Josselin served as a prison for British soldiers. In the 18C, the Rohan, living at the Court, no longer resides in the castle which is unfurnished and abandoned. The castle again became a prison in 1758, after the battle of Saint-Cast, and then housed nearly 1 200 prisoners of war. In 1760, in front of the decay of the fortress, Louis III de Rohan Chabot demolished what remains of the two large towers that frame the first door and the drawbridge. In 1776, in order to provide work for poor children in the region, the Duchess of Rohan used to establish a cotton spinning mill in the rooms on the ground floor.

josselin

During the French revolution, the town of Josselin took over the castle and settled there to hold its meetings. Part of the dwelling serves as a grain depot and in the isolated Tower the well-off are imprisoned. In 1799, the castle was returned to the Rohan family, in a much degraded state. This situation of abandonment of the Castle of Josselin will continue until around 1850. In 1822, the Duchess of Berry, during her adventurous tour, convinced the Duke of Rohan to restore it. Around 1835, Charles de Rohan-Chabot, 10th Duke of Rohan, decided to initiate a restoration in good and due form of his abode.  The exterior is rehabilitated; the Interior decorated in the neo-Gothic style called “Troubadour” then in vogue and refurbished almost completely redesigned. The work was continued from 1880 to 1904 and then in 1917, before being opened to the public in 1930.

josselin

It is currently inhabited by the 14th Duke of Rohan, Josselin de Rohan, withdrawn from regional or national policy affairs, and his family. The gardens and four large rooms on the ground floor of the Castle are visited, the long dining room whose top of the paneling is carved up to date with the names of Duke Alain, his parents, his wife and his children, the Salon, an anteroom and the library containing 3 000 volumes and old portraits. Very nice kept indeed!

There are many works of art exhibited such as paintings by masters including a portrait of Louis XIV by Rigaud, that of the Admiral of the Casse attributed to Rigaud, that of Louis XV child by Rosalba Carriera, number of family effigies like the Cardinal of Rohan, the Duchess de La Rochefoucauld d’Enville, Josselin de Rohan-Chabot 12th Duke of Rohan and member Deputy of the Morbihan dept by Jean-Gabriel Domergue, the marble bust of Duke Alain by Auguste Rodin, a beautiful 18C furniture, the table that served for the signature of the Edict of Nantes, porcelain of Sèvres, a large pendulum offered by Louis XV to Bussy, successor of Dupleix as Governor of the French India c 1755, the bronze copy of the famous statue of Henri of Navarre young by Bosio who was shown until 1830 the apartment of the Royal children at the Palais des Tuileries (Paris) , a monumental equestrian statue in marble by Olivier V de Clisson by Emmanuel Frémiet whose plaster reproduction, offered by the 12th Duke, is exhibited in a room of the Château de Suscinio (Morbihan). The old stables have been upgraded to accommodate the doll museum (musée des poupées) of historical dolls collected by the Duchees of Rohan and very interesting especially for children.

The French garden created at the beginning of the 20C extends to the Renaissance façade of the Castle of Josselin. Boxwood and trimmed yews frame the lawns.  A rose garden has been arranged in 2001. It comprises 160 roses belonging to 40 different varieties.  An English park stretches at the foot of the ramparts, along a river. This park features rare species of azaleas, camellias, many rhododendrons and centuries-old trees. It is open to the public for the heritage days (journées du patrimoine)  ; the next on is due 36th Edition September 21-22, 2019.

josselin

As usual by me , some webpages to help you plan your trip here are

Official Chateau de Josselin

Tourist office of Morbihan on the Castle and gardens

Tourist office of Brittany on the Castle

It should be one of your highlights of a visit to Brittany away from the beaches. I say worth the detour indeed at the Château de Josselin. Enjoy it with the whole family and not forget to visit the Dolls museum in it, great for all but especially for children.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

 

April 21, 2019

Lorient , a nice sailing harbor!

Well now the weather is on sunny days and nice even high of 24C under the sun , it seems Spring is getting ready.  I have come to this town often close to me and the sub prefecture of the Morbihan dept 56 .  It really not well known off the beaten path even if has nice things to see especially as it relates to the sea. The city of Lorient means in breton An Oriant or the Orient as the companies that sail to the new world ,the Americas were done here and across the bay at Port Louis.

Lorient was heavily damaged during WWII about 80% of it destroyed. It was an important nazi submarine base from which they prowl the Atlantic sinking allied ships. The base is still there , today use for better things. city webpage  https://patrimoine.lorient.bzh/histoire/

lorient

lorient

lorient

You then go next door in the beautiful sailing boats harbor of Lorient home of many sailing competitions, and the great champion Eric Tabarly. He ,with sponsors created a place call the Cité de Voilé Eric Tabarly. This is an impressive building with all you need to know about sailings boats, models, sea maps, interactive sailing boat class, films, pictures,and guides, all around and inside the sailing world. The boats are magnificent starting with the front door black  boat in front that you can climb inside with the purchase ticket, and the sailing boat tower to see all the harbor of Lorient. Huge interactive ,display museum of sailing interesting for the whole family. Webpage:   https://www.citevoile-tabarly.com/en

lorient

lorient-ent-inside-cite-eric-tabarly-sep12

lorient

lorient

We have been here before, but as there is so much to see here, sometimes you need to come back for more lol! The place Aristide Briand where the FNAC store (which my boys shop enormously!) is where the gare d’échanges for the bus terminal and the narrow streets full of shops and restos are vibrant always especially on Saturdays. The whole town is there it seems. The marina of pleasure boats just as impressive as the harbor of sailing boats,and the passenger terminal to go to île de Groix (sublime at the Atlantic ocean) across the bay with the compagnie Océane, webpage : https://www.compagnie-oceane.fr/en/node/2

lorient gare maritime pass entr jul13

lorient

A nice way to do some walking around beautiful sailing boats,and past the afternoon with the family, while looking into some historical facts of our past to serve as learnings not to repeat them in the future. Enjoy renovated Lorient, only about 30 minutes from my house. If you like the sea ,then this town is for you. Remember to search in my blog for more posts on Lorient!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

April 21, 2019

A paradise found, La Trinité sur Mer!!!

It never cease to amaze me of the gems we have in my belle France, and my beautiful Brittany just needs to be seen more. I am always wondering where to go as always a difficult decision here. However, going to La Trinité sur Mer is sublime. This is heavens for boaters, but a great leisure day can be spend here, more if you decide to partake the wonderful beaches here.

I have written about La Trinité sur Mer  before in my posts. So this is a recap with some common information. To start ,I always look up the tourist office ,the office is just before reaching the Casino on the wharfs, webpage http://www.ot-trinite-sur-mer.fr/en/default.aspx   ,then for bit more on transports I take a look at the city mayor’s site , let me tell you by TIM bus line 1  Auray-Carnac-Quiberon ,you can connect from Paris Montparnasse to Auray and there take this bus to LTM. Of course, we come by car , off the N165 expressway exit on D28  dir St Philbert, and find easy free parking at Place du Voulien (except market days), Stade de la Vigie, Le Poulbert by rue du Men Du,dir Carnac, and Le Men Du by the beach.   There is a small parking above the main street Kermogat.

la trinite sur mer

The highlights for me here other than seeing the boats, and walking the upper city hilly street all with beautiful views of the bay below is to eat or beach activities.  There is a great bridge over the harbor, pont de Kerister, and a nice resto A l’etage just by the end of the marina with good food and great views; upper floor with a cold one lazy outlook you can spend several hours there lol!!!  This site in French but nice picture tells you of the bridge of Kerister the new one from 1956 but was initially conceptualise by Gustave Eiffel (you know him!). http://locmariaquer.info/f221_%20le%20pont%20de%20Kerisper.htm

la trinite sur mer

Oh yes the beaches, well give the names, port Men Allen,Kerbihan, Kervillen (the best), and Le Men Du. The tourist office tells you more about them,  http://www.ot-trinite-sur-mer.fr/en/les-plages.aspx

This is a webpage that I always look when looking for beaches to go here Plages TV, have it on La Trinité sur Mer: https://en.plages.tv/seaside-resorts/la-trinite-sur-mer-56470

Some further info on the beaches here:

Plage du Port, is a small sandy beach exposed to the East, located along the side trail with green surroundings. It is the closest to the city center, and the view stretches from the Kerisper bridge to the channel’s exit. It is accessible only from the coastal path sentier des douaniers.

The beach of Plage du Men-Dû  is a fine sandy beach facing South. It’s shallow. It makes the joy of bathers at high tide, and the joy of wading and fishing by foot on shallow waters at low tide. In the center, dominates the island of Stuhan (l’île de Stuhan). At low seas, this islet is connected to landside by a strip of sand, called tombolo. Parking with direct access allows you to reach the beach by car with ease. In July and August, a free mini bus, circulating on the town, serves this beach. At the same time, it has a Beach Club, which also provides surveillance. It is equipped with public toilets. Pets are not allowed. A bar-restaurant is located close to the beach.

la trinite sur mer

The beach of Kervillen or plage de Kervillen (good one ok) is a fine sandy beach facing South. A parking nearby with direct access to the beach makes it possible to get there by car with convenience. In July and August, a free mini-bus circulating on the town serves this beach. It is ideal for swimming at any time of the tide, and safely. In July and August, it has a rescue station (SNSM very good folks) open from 13h30 to 19h. A seahorse armchair for people with reduced mobility is available. It is equipped with a slipstream for small navigation gear (light sail). On site, public toilets. Family-run, it hosts a Beach Club in July and August. Pedalos (pedal boats) ,and kayaks rentals are also possible at this time. Dogs are not allowed. A restaurant and bar with direct access overlooks it and offers food and beverages at any time.

La trinite sur mer

There is a funny petit train or little train ride that takes you into the hilly parts of La Trinité sur Mer and the harbor front up to nearby Carnac. A nice quick way to see the main points,and giving you time to come back to see more in depth later on. You get on it at La Trinité Sur Mer by the cours des quais along the marina; webpage:  https://www.petittrain-carnac.com/carnac?language=en

la trinite sur mer

You to go to this resto A l’Etage , you can start here for an apéro drink before meal or the whole thing, one of my favorite there, great views and great company ,Yelp has some info on the resto here: https://www.yelp.fr/biz/l-etage-la-trinit%C3%A9-sur-mer-2

la trinite sur mer

la trinite sur mer

For lunch, you can try another favorite ,the Créperie Le Goeland, just in front of harbor marina on main street, men du, and it is on a second floor, you entered to a stair in beton  up to the upper level by the parking La Vergie and turn left, its just about 25 meters ,and the entrance its there. Very good food, although the portions a bit small, sausages and cheese galettes, ham and cheese galette, with poire hélene and banana split desserts and half a bottle of sauvignon white wine from Touraine(Loire); expresso coffee, was the last euros given here! .Webpage on tourist office:  http://www.ot-trinite-sur-mer.fr/fr/restaurants-la-trinite-creperie-le-goeland-e121-l1-r908.aspx

la trinite sur mer

Another place I do frequent and buy when I visit really early is the fish market, all fressssh off the boats and very nicely and cleanly done, they can even cook it for you on the spot!!! Yummy seafood from Brittany, the best in France for sure. They are the Halle aux Poissons,open every mornings,and another foody ,veggie, clothings type flea market that is on in summers only ,Foodies on Tuesdays and all types on Fridays mornings from 8h to 13h by the Place du Voulien continuing towards the rue du Douet. But hurry up as they are to begin remodeling the whole area on September 2019 and the fish/food market won’t open until Summer 2020. More info on the market in the city page in French here: https://www.la-trinite-sur-mer.fr/vie-quotidienne/marches/marches-de-la-trinite-sur-mer-et-de-sa-region/

la trinite sur mer

la trinite sur mer

There is a nice grocery store right in town such as Carrefour City, and other specialize food stores. Carrefour is a chain, and there you will find the best prices for your in house food,sundry items. It is on your way from the center towards the Casino, on your left hand side, webpage https://www.carrefour.fr/magasin/city-la-trinite-sur-mer

There you go folks, another gem in my background.  I am only 26 km or about 16 mi from me, and it is a delight at any time. La Trinité sur Mer is really a Trinity!! Enjoy it

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

 

April 21, 2019

Sarzeau castles and oysters!

Staying in my beautiful Morbihan in my lovely Brittany of my belle France let me tell you a bit more on a nice area we like. I have to say as many here do with pride, this is the only administrative department of France that the name is not French! You will be in Dept 56 Morbihan or in French would be Petite Mer, small sea. This is what is call in Breton language, Mor=sea bihan=small. And you should know my lovely Brittany is Bretagne in French but in local Breton is Breizh!

Now you come into the Presqu’île de Rhuys or the Rhuys peninsula to visit the nice small town of Sarzeau. The most known castle here ,Suscinio, and resident of the Dukes of Brittany had a separate page in my blog. I give that link here for ease of search in my blog: My blog post on the Chateau de Suscinio

Sarzeau has several islands which are administratively attached to it such as the Isle of Ouefs, Godec Island, Stibiden Island, Govihan Island, and Brannec island.  Sarzeau is limited to the west by the towns of Arzon and Saint-Gildas-de-Rhuys, to the northeast by that of Saint-Armel and to the southeast by that of the Tour-du-Parc; To the north by the Gulf of Morbihan and to the south by the Atlantic Ocean. With more than 65 km of coastline, Sarzeau is one of the towns of Brittany and even France that have the longest coastline!!

Area Tourist office of Gulf of Morbihan on Sarzeau

sarzeau

However, the area has plenty of castles , unfortunately most are private, still in old families descendants or partially open by reservation or in Summer. And we keep missing them by traveling outside the area in those months! So when we try this past Saturday , it was more of the same lol!  Let me just give you a couple of examples

The Château or Castle of Kerlevénan is built in the late 18C, by 1780, the Castle, built in the classical style was restored in the 19C in the Italian taste. Chinese pavilion, family Chapel and English garden/ park. All done on behalf of Marie-Joseph-Armand de Gouvello, Lord of Keriaval, Kelevenan, Kerhar, Kerbot and Kerlen. Born in 1747, he married in the same year 1780, Catherine-Charlotte de Peyrac, a native of Santo Domingo. He is a member of the Court by the order of nobility, in the States of Brittany of 1788. He emigrated from the French revolution in Augsburg, Bavaria, and then to Brighton, Sussex, England. The castle is sold as a national property during its exile. Under the restoration of the monarchy, the castle is bought by his son who had also, emigrated with his parents in Bavaria and England, then in Italy (see post on the Hotel de Limur of Vannes) heir to the Castle, the founding son of the rural senior rest homes of Kerhar and Kerbot, in Sarzeau, near the Castle of Kerlevénan. He is a legitimist Royal member of the Morbihan from 1871 to 1876, President of the society of patronage of the agricultural orphanages of France, Honorary President of the society of Breton rescuers and of the Board of Directors of the École Saint-François-Xavier in Vannes. The castle is open every day from July 1st to September 15th, except on Wednesdays, from 14h to 18h, and by appointment from October 1st to June 30th. Which we always missed lol! Contact tel for reservations is +33 0) 2 97 26 46 79.

Tourist office of Dept 56 Morbihan on Kerlevenan castle

Tourist office of the Area Gulf of Morbihan on Kerlevenan castle

Tourist office of Brittany on Kerlevenan castle

Sarzeau

The Château or Castle of Truscat, is from 1702, revamped towards 1830 at the site of a Manor of the 16C, after 1850, the works of embellishment were carried out. The Chapel is built between 1625 and 1630. The castle is in the middle of a beautiful park on the edge of the Gulf of Morbihan with centuries-old trees. It belongs to the descendants of the Francheville family for more than five centuries. In 1815, General Bernadotte, the future King of Sweden (and from which Royal line is today) , presided over the feast of the pacification. A friend of Jules de Francheville, Frédéric Ozanam often stayed there. A private property is not visit. Even with call for reservation.

sarzeau

Both of these castles have to be seen up close otherwise the park property is too far to be seen from closeup. Kerlevenan can be seen a bit from the road D780 that goes into the peninsula but rather fast difficult for pictures.

However, one thing we enjoy coming to the town itself of Sarzeau and the coastal area is the precious oysters, one of the best and produce , taste, sold and eaten locally!!! We shop at one property that we were just this morning

The Nurserie of the Gulf-Spiru’Breizh is the 1st connected growing of oysters of France. Tasting of oysters refined to the fresh Spiru’Marine produced on site and appetizers ‘ Triskel.  From Wednesday to Sunday, terrace laid out on the sea and privatise area for all your events (seminar, wedding, birthday…). A magical place, a remarkable site. Open from April.  Visit of the farm from 11h to 12h with guide or interactive (children quiz): 5€ at Pointe de Benance, city limits of Sarzeau on the water!

Official La Nurserie du Golfe

Area tourist office Gulf of Morbihan on the Nursery of the Gulf oysters!

sarzeau

sarzeau

sarzeau

The whole area is full of awesome seafood of course and many more all over the place along the coast. However, we like to stick with the one we first like and continue the patronage , it is always appreciated. For other choices here is the tourist office

Area tourist office Gulf of Morbihan on oyster farming

You all come here you hear this is the best time before the real hot weather and crowds come in, well they are already here but later will be busier indeed.  Presqu’ile de Rhuys ok. This is the third most visited region of France ,Brittany, after Ile de France ,and PACA/provence, but , also, the least publisized for foreign visitors still. You will have a lot of off the beaten path places to see and enjoy.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

 

 

April 21, 2019

The ramparts fortifications of Hennebont!

And I am back at you on lovely close by Hennebont in my lovely Morbihan of my beautiful Brittany in my belle France ::) So much beauty to see again no wonder is No 1 visited country in the world and since 1949! Let me bring you a bit closer to this nice town and its beauties, you can see my other posts on Hennebont as well in my blog.

You must see the ramparts, placed at the old fortification of the times of duke Jean I (13C). Overcoming many wars such as the one of the succession of Brittany and the war of the league in 1590. The towers crown the corners at four cardinal points ,now only 3 remained, Tour St Nicolas (at south side), Tour des Carmes,(north east side), and the fortified porte or door at the east side, built before the 14C.  This last one, known as  Porte Broërec’h, the entry door to the enclosed city is flanked by two twins towers link by a bridge conserving the machinary of the raising bridge. A round walkway is seen on top of the towers whre great views of the city can be seen today.

hennebont

hennebont

La Porte Broêrec’h ,  is a defensive work to serve tower to tower the guards of the prison that it was  with room for the homeless and finally a museum; one of the richest in the department on the Breton Arts. Most of the rooms were destroyed on the Nazi bombardment of August 7 1944. today, the Tours Broêrec’h house in its ten rooms a museum of arts and traditions. Open from June 1st to 30 September from 10h30 -12h30 and  13h30 to 18h30. More info here:  http://www.musee-hennebont.fr/#

Hennebont

This urban enclosure is a set of fortification elements built around the fortified town of Hennebont. It is raised from the last third of the 13C. These ramparts know several changes over the centuries: modernizations in the 14C, 16C and in the 20C. Preserved for nearly 900 meters, it is the second largest in the Dept 56 of Morbihan.

A bit of history I like

In the 6C, the building of the first fortifications to control the passage of the Blavet river.  In the 11C a mound is reinforced by the Lords ofo Kemenet-Héboé on one located on the right bank of the Blavet river. Later in the 13C dismantling of the first feudal mound and construction of the current fortifications as a fortified town  by the order of John I Le Roux. In August 1264, mention of “lamote de Henbont” in an Act passed between Hervé de Léon and Pierre de Bretagne. It is on this occasion that prohibition is made for the descendants of the signatories to  do a fort castle at this place. After 1270, the Duke of Brittany Jean Le Roux dismantled the old feudal motte and built fortifications on the left bank of the Blavet river. By 1342 the city is besieged twice but without success, by Charles de Blois during the war of Succession of the Duchy of Brittany. In 1590, the Prince of Dombes tries to seize the city. This was resumed shortly thereafter by his rival, the Duke of Mercoeur. In the 14C  to the 16C, modernizations of the ramparts to adapt to the evolution of the canons.  On August 7, 1944, allied bombardment touches part of the ramparts.

hennebont

hennebont

 

Today, it is a place of walk by locals and visitors alike, very pleasant nice views indeed ,that we enjoy very much, it runs along the rue Trottier, bordered by beautiful landscaped spaces at the foot of the Tour de St. Nicolas. You can go back from the Blavet river to the fortified gate dating from the end of the 14C, the Porte Broërec’h, entrance to the walled city. It is a monumental door backed by two twin towers connected by a courting. There are still traces of the old drawbridge. To the northeast still remains the Tour des Carmes.  These vestiges show that Hennebont had a great military importance at the time.

hennebont

hennebont

Very nice pretty and historical area not to say more of the architecture. Here are some webpages to help you plan your trip here

Tourist office of the Lorient south Brittany area on Hennebont

Tourist office of Brittany on Hennebont

Indeed worth a detour and see my other posts on nice Hennebont. And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

 

April 20, 2019

The Haras National of Hennebont!

So bringing you closer to home in my delightful Morbihan 56 Breton in beautiful Brittany. There are towns here galore that stay on the off the beaten path do not know why. They are loaded with good sights and wonderful small town ambiance of my belle France. I am trying to make them discover for you.

This is the case of Hennebont a fortified city, more of that later. For now, enjoy the Horse Stud Farm or Haras National d’Hennebont!  Various activities are carried out such as  reproduction of stallion, Equestrian Club, dressage, discovery space of the horse, guided visits etc. It is a historical place and very nicely done; worth the detour near me!

hennebont

A bit of history I like

The deposit of stallions created at Langonnet Abbey in 1806 for the south of Brittany, poorly served by narrow and unpassable roads, was transferred in 1857 to Hennebont in the enclosure of the Abbey de La Joie. The Abbaye de la Joie Notre-Dame or Abbey of Notre-Dame-de-Joy is a former Cistercian Abbey. Nowadays, it is on the site of the national stud farms.  The Abbey of Joy Notre-Dame, founded in 1953 in Campénéac, takes over the tradition now of the abbey of old.

From its inception, the Haras National or national stud farm of Hennebont  became the capital of the Breton horse breeding.  The Haras  comprises seven stables arranged around two courtyards as well as an infirmary, a forge, a saddlery and the dwellings of the Director and staff. Since 2007, the Joint Union of the national stud farm of Hennebont manages the property, outside the Abbey of Joy and the Pavilion of the Porterie.

hennebont

In April 2016, the city of Hennebont and Lorient agglomeration officially announced that it had negotiated an agreement with the IFCE to become owners of the entire site comprising the 32 buildings, including the Abbey of Joy, spread over 23 hectares,  provided that the partners of the mixed Union are committed to helping to ensure the management of the site.  The envisaged project plans to perpetuate the activity around the horse to make the stud farm a tourist hub of the Lorient basin. Which they did!

An integral part of the history of Hennebont for over 150 years, the Haras National or national stud farm is a unique and prestigious place. The wooded park, located between the city and the countryside, houses the historic buildings of the Napoleonic stables. The birthplace of the Breton draught horse, the stud was originally bred for war horses.  If the activity of the place has evolved over time, it is always dense with reproduction of stallions, Equestrian Club, dressage, carriage rides, sightseeing, and saddlery. A discovery area of the horse is located in its enclosure.

hennebont

In the great period of the stud farm, more than 200 stallions were in operation. At the beginning of the 2000’s, a total of 50 horses, including 35 traits and 15 horses of blood that live permanently at the Hennebont stud farm. In 2016, there are only a dozen horses in the stud farm.

hennebont

hennebont

It was after WWII,  the decline of breeds line began with the progress of mechanization. The Breton breed, by its qualities, nevertheless resists thanks to the meat market in the French and Italian markets.  The techniques evolve and the Haras now transport the stallions by truck to mount bars installed near the farms. The incentive premiums allocated during the breeding competitions encourage the continuation of the activity and allow the Haras National d’Hennebont to maintain its influence.  It also opens up to other uses of the horse, through equestrian sports by hosting the national equestrian society. The number of sports and racing horses goes up to 12 stallions in 1973.  The decline in the line workforce is thus compensated by a progress in the blood workforce.  The number of stations decreases and the techniques become sharper with the emergence of artificial insemination in 1981 to the Haras d’Hennebont,  then the techniques of freezing of semen that allow today to serve the mares without moving the stallions .

Plenty for the entire family to spent an afternoon here ;worth the detour I say. The Haras National  site offers you a two-time tour combining a free and guided course. In an old stable renovated, discover through a beautiful exhibition space with films, computer terminals, panels, the history of relations between man and horse, the activity of the Haras and its trades. Then, accompanied by a guide, you go to meet the horses in the stable n ° 1 through the saddlery of honor and the collection of horse-drawn carriages. The most for us was the animations and Equestrian shows done !

Some webpages to help you plan your trip here are

Official Haras National of Hennebont

Tourist office of Morbihan on the Haras

Tourist office of Brittany on the Haras

Again lovely place worth the detour. Enjoy the Haras National d’Hennebont in my gorgeous Morbihan 56.

And remember, happy travels ,good health, and many cheers to all!!!

April 20, 2019

Basilica of Notre Dame du Paradis at Hennebont!

And I need to take you back to my beloved home dept 56 of Morbihan in my beautiful adopted Brittany. There is so much to see and I feel I just touch the top, there is so much to see and see in depth, hopefully will have life to see them all. Hoping and praying, help me too. I thank you for reading my blog for the last 9,5 years and my almost 9th in the Morbihan!! time flies when having fun they said.

There is a nice fortified town near me that is just a gem and seldom visited even on tourist offices , sort of like an off the beaten path find. I will tell you a bit more of the Basilica Notre Dame du Paradis or Our Lady of Paradise Basilica in Hennebont.

hennebont

The Basilica of Our Lady of Paradise located in Hennebont dept 56 of the Morbihan in the region of Brittany; it has the status of minor Basilica.

hennebont

The project of a chapel dedicated to Notre-Dame is presented by François Michart, an ironworker, in 1513, on the place du Paradis. The first stone is laid in 1514 and the unfinished Church is consecrated in 1524. The chapel serves as a parish church from 1590. The Church is of flamboyant Gothic style, and is noticed by the boldness of its porch and the richness of its ornamentation.  The Church was elevated to the rank of minor Basilica by Pope Pius X on January 17, 1913. The Basilica Church Notre Dame du Paradis was miraculously spared by the Nazis bombing of1944, when a large part of the city was destroyed.

hennebont

The imposing Bell Tower. high of nearly 65 meters, its location on one of the high points of the city makes it a real sight. Moreover, when folks came on a pilgrimage from the west, the first point that could be seen was baptized because of that “mountain of salvation”. As soon as they saw her for the first time, the pilgrims were already saved.   The tower is divided into three parts. The base that opens with a vast porch whose elevation is made even more vertiginous by the carved decoration that adorns it. The massive buttresses are lighted by the presence of niches which may have housed statues   and small vegetal sculptures; at the first Gallery level. From the first balustrade, here is the drum that is enclosed the Bell-room, the only room in the building with a chimney, and the belfry with the bells. And finally, all of lace, the arrow itself that will know many times and restorations. Attached to the Bell Tower, the two turrets of stairs   one of which no longer exist   allow access to the upper parts and still visually lighten the mass of the Bell Tower. The particular color of the granite drawn from the old quarries of Locoyarne gives the Bell Tower a beautiful blond hue especially in the end of the day.

hennebont

Among the architectural features of the Basilica Notre Dame du Paradis or Our Lady of Paradis, you will noticed as soon as you penetrated into its walls the vast nave formed by the dark nave and the aisles pierced by large bays to bring the light in. This rather dark nave allows to highlight the most important part of a it; the choir. This polygonal choir receives a flood of light from the five stained glass windows that open into its walls. These stained glass windows are so vast that the walls that surround them seem, in the light, almost non-existent. Now masked by the organ, a canopy opens above the western gates; way to add light to the bottom of the nave. This emphasis on light is one of the characteristics of Gothic architecture. The oldest organ in the Morbihan which dates from 1652.

hennebont

In 1652 an epidemic ravaged the region, and nothing seemed to be able to stop it that the intervention of the Virgin to whom the inhabitants promised a silver statue that would be carried out in procession each year. Hennebont was spared and offered to the Church a silver statue in 1700, which unfortunately was melted in the Mint of Nantes in 1792 ,during the French revolution.. Since a new silver bronze statue made in 1818 replaces it. There is a painting evoking this episode: the vow of 1699, work of 1807 by François-Henri Mulard.. See inside the stained glass by Max Ingrand retracing the great events of the history of Hennebont.

hennebont

hennebont

An imposing Basilica Church on the now name Place du Maréchal Foch of Hennebont. Another gem of a monument to visit here and walking in town is glorious. We parked by the river basin just behind the ramparts or up behind the Basilica each time in town. We are just 28 km or about 17 miles from it along the expressway N165 direction Brest.

Some webpages as usual by me to help you plan your visit here are

City of Hennebont on the Basilica ND du Paradis

Tourist office of Lorient Brittany south on Hennebont

Tourist office of Brittany on Hennebont

et Voilà you have it all on the Basilica Notre Dame du Paradis and a great part of the city of Hennebont history. A welcome stop easy on and off the N165 expressway and train service abound. Hope you enjoy it as we do.

And remember, happy travels , good health, and many cheers to all!!!

 

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