Cap Fréhel and its lighthouse!

Another wonderful monument to see riding along the D34 in Côtes d’Armor dept 22 of my beautiful Bretagne. This is at Cap Fréhel or some would say Plévenon. A wonderful cape at the end of the lands of Brittany facing the English anglo normand islands.

The town of Fréhel is known that started when text tells us that an abbey existed on the mound where the New Bourg was built in 1870. Under the name of Glayo abbey, it was cited in 1159 as a dependent of the Saint-Aubin des Bois abbey by cession of the Saint-Jacut abbey

In the town the main place and wonderful place to be is the seaside resort of Sables-d’Or-les-Pins ( see post)  created in the 1920s on the dunes along the great Minieu bay between Pléhérel Plage and Plurien. On August 14, 1944, a task force of the 28th American Infantry Division was tasked with attacking the nazis forces occupying Cap Fréhel. They arrived in Plévenon in the evening. The next day, August 15, with the help of FFI resistance fighters, it attacked the Frosh aerial reconnaissance station. The nazis surrendered around noon.

The Cap Fréhel or cape is a point of pink sandstone with a tormented relief that separates the bay of Saint-Brieuc to the east from the Bay of Saint-Malo, on the Channel coast. It is located in the town of Plévenon and not on the adjacent one of Fréhel, as the name of the latter might suggest. This cape is one of the most impressive in Brittany: the cliff dominates the sea from around 70 meters. The spectacular red cliffs show red sandstone dipping shallowly to the west and which is sometimes cut by large veins of diorite which rise almost vertically. Located 8.5 km from the center of Fréhel and 4 km from the center of Plévenon, access is via a coastal road D34, either from the east, passing near Fort La Latte ( see post), or from Sables- d’Or-les-Pins, (see post) to the west On a clear day you can see the Channel Island of Jersey. The wonderful beaches here are several such as the cove of Sévignés (at the foot of the cliffs of the cape), the Fosse (accessible by going down the dunes), or even the Grèves d’en Bas a recognized surf spot.

The old lighthouse or Vauban tower, in granite, was built under Louis XIV in 1701 by one of Vauban’s disciples, Jean-Siméon Garangeau. A more modern and taller lighthouse was built between 1845 and 1847, in place of the current one. It was electrified in 1886. Nazis troops destroyed it in August 1944. The current lighthouse, rebuilt in 1946, was inaugurated in 1950; with 32 meters high, its lantern dominates the sea from 103 meters. On a clear day, its light is visible more than 100 kilometers away.


In May 1694, Vauban inspected the northern coasts of Brittany and proposed the construction of a tower to warn of attacks by the English fleet. Around 1840, Léonce Reynaud, in front of the state of the building, plans to build a new octagonal tower 22 meters high that can support a Fresnel lens. Range of fire increases to 25 miles.

frehel phare old oct20

During WWII, the lighthouse served as an observation post for the Nazis army which dynamited the lighthouse on August 11, 1944. Only the old Vauban tower remained standing and supported a temporary fire until 1950. Begun in 1946, the construction of the current lighthouse is completed by the lighting of the fire on July 1, 1950. The electrification by the network is done simultaneously.


A small building is also built at the end of the cape, it is the mist siren.


The town of Plévenon in French:

The dept 22 Côtes d’Armor on the Cap Fréhel area:

The tourist office of Bretagne on cap Fréhel and Fort de Latte:

The DIRM Ministry of the Seas, on lighthouses such as this Cap Fréhel in French:

The lighthouses of France on Cap Fréhel in French:

And there you go a wonderful spot on my Bretagne and a beautiful lighthouse or phare! A nice place to visit me think, and beautiful views over the cliffs! Hope you enjoy the the tour.

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

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2 Comments to “Cap Fréhel and its lighthouse!”

  1. I very much appreciate your post. I’d been planning to travel to Brittany last spring but Covid put an end to that. On the bright side, I’m learning about new places to see that I hadn’t planned to visit. Thanks.

    Liked by 1 person

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