Archive for December 6th, 2020

December 6, 2020

Pointe du Raz in pays Bigouden !!!

And I continue my quest to update by now my entire blog!! So many older posts done in a hurry excited to tell but lacking prose and good pictures. Now on the current situation is the time to do this. Hope you are enjoying it and follow me on the bandwagon! This time I will update you on a windy point on the land of Bretagne; the Pointe du Raz!

We finally headed for Finistére. Getting back on the N165 passing the ria river of Auray over the  Kerplouz bridge we headed to our destination by taken the D784 just after Quimper direction Audierne.

We headed for Pouldreuzic in the pays Bigouden to get to the boutique factory of Hénaff (founded in 1907) the great Breton deli with all its delicacies. This was wonderful and we loaded up on more than 130€ shopping on cans from duck mousse to rabbit, deer, wild pigs, tuna, hams,  in different blends as well as cider (130 m2 of space). The store has a museum as well. It is a nice compact store with cold cuts pates on the right and souvenirs , fisheries and home deco items on the left side.  The factory is just around the corner and they have a full service center for the community . You have a salon de thé and garden playground next door with picnic tables. The opening hours varied in low and high season.

The official webpage Hénaffhttps://www.henaff.com/

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Once we did our shopping in Pouldreuzic town, we had some time left so we headed forward to the Pointe du Raz, the furthermost point in the peninsula passing towns like Landudec, Plozévet, and Plouhinec with nice churches and the great harbor of Audierne.

We did passed by the harbor beach town of Audierne, this is very picturesque like a post card and great ambiance along the waterfront.

And we finally reach Pointe du Raz, in the Cap Sizun, (or cape Sizun) at the westernmost point in the peninsula seeing the vast Atlantic ocean and the lighthouses of the island of Sein. The view here is magnificent over the vast ocean and you are on a cliff with rocky stony footpath leading you to the edge!  Parking starts from 6,50€ and there is plenty of shops and restos on the point to keep it a day. You see the grandeur of the panorama on the Raz de Sein very famous by seamen with their lighthouses of the Vieille, and the Tévennec, as well as the fascinating island of  île de Sein.

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More on the Pointe du Raz here: https://www.pointeduraz.com/en/grand-site-de-france/area-outstanding-natural-beauty

The tourist office of Finistére dept 29 in French: https://www.toutcommenceenfinistere.com/article/pointe-du-raz-grand-site-de-france

The local tourist office of Cap Sizun on the Pointe du Raz: https://www.capsizuntourisme.fr/le-cap-sizun/pointe-du-raz/grand-site-de-france/plogoff/bretagne/finistere

A place not to miss if coming to Brittany at least arrive to see it and have lunch on site great combination!

A lovely ride coming back late to get to my car wash at E Leclerc Vannes and the grocery shopping for other stuff there , finally reaching home pretty late. Sunday will be to rest lol! Again enjoy the ride in the Finistére! and lovely Pointe du Raz!!

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

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December 6, 2020

Commana enclose church!!

And I really needed a complete overhaul on this one, old but links old too. It has been written before in my blog but deserves more. One of the wonders of Bretagne. The enclose church in Commana.

One of the Church religious enclosures in Brittany, this one in Finistére, in the town of Commana. We left early on a wonderful day that saw temperatures go up to 23C or about 72F and sunny.

Commana is about 1h35 from our home and we left by car along the N165 to exit Morlaix , Plouay going into the D764 and D48 ; the town is right in the Parc Naturel Régional d’Armorique; a natural park passing by the famous Breton historical area of the Monts d’Arrée.

The enclosure or enclos paroissial de Commana  is done around the Church of Saint Derrien. It was built in the 16C to 17C and it is considered one of the most beautiful in Brittany. It includes the Church, the enclosure itself, and the Arc de Triomphe.

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The leyend about this Saint  Derrien is that he save from drowning the Prince Élorn ,by which the river now bears his name. Refusing to be given land in exchange for this good deed, the Saint demand that a church be built in Commana. So this was done in 1645.

The belltower is 57 meters high on one of the best hills of Léon which are at 262 meters above sea level. The belltower looks straight , austere arid on the image of the semi desert Monts d’Arrée; the date of 1592 is engraved on the base.

Inside, you have the retables of Sainte Anne, a work of art baroque from the 17C more precise in 1682 ; there are two other retables those of  the Rosary or Rosaire , and the  Cinq-Plaies or Five Wounds.

The chapel retable of Sainte Anne, is a work of art baroque from the 17C, measuring 6 meters by 8 meters high. It is composed of three parts, in the middle the Virgin and Sainte Anne looking at the Enfant Child having in its left hand the globe of the world.  See the two columns twisted and decorated in guirlandes of vines and leaves. The lateral niches enclosed Saint Joseph ,and Saint Joachim. Higher up you see the Sainte Virgin and the Angel Gabriel. Below it the throne of the Eternal Father held by two angels.  At the summit you find Sainte Trinité and God Eternal Father holding his sons ,all built 1682.

The retable or altar chapel of the Rosary or Rosaire shows the statues of the Virgin and the Child offering the rosary to Saint Dominique and Sainte Catherine de Sienne.  The two niches laterally enclosed the statues of Saint Joachim , and Saint Joseph. Below them, you see a figure of the Father and Mother presenting their Child to the Holy Virgin.

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The central niche of the  Chapel retable of the Cinq-Plaies shows the Lord showing its wounds.  On the side two angels crowned in roses have a crown of thorns and nails ; showing laterally the statues of Saint Sébastien and Sainte Marguerite.  They are dated from 1852. The image of these to the figures on the boat of the times makes you think that like the retable of Sainte Anne, they are done by the marines of Brest.

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The baptismal chapel dates from the 18C.  However, the urn dates from 1656, located at the heart of a column decorated with gadroons, fluted and surmounted by a canopy in wood to five parts carried by five pilasters to which are attached two cardinal virtues (the Justice and Temperance) and the three theological virtues (faith, hope, and charity).  Above the canopy, balusters support the dome above the statue of Jesus  holding a cross, sustained three caryatids. This last work dates from 1683.

Coming into the enclosure you pass by an Arc de Triomphe ,closed of a wrought iron grille dating from the 18C. It was open only for wedding or funeral to allow processions, the access to the Church being usually by steps located on the left side of the Arc de Triomphe.

Once through the Arc de Triomphe, you see , immediately on the left, the Reliquary  Chapel, improperly called the ossuary ; dated 1677 to 1687 , this chapel is very sober, has only one door and four windows each with stouts. Only the rosettes and spitters spiral carved dragons adorn the façade.

There are two cavalries; the first one is located between the Arc de Triomphe and the porch is dated 1585, however the cross carrying the date of 1742, which suggests that it had replaced a cross dating from the 16C. Dating from 1624, the second Calvary is located more in the cemetery.

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The city of Commana on the enclosure in French: http://www.commana.fr/fr/information/38099/patrimoine-commana

The dept 29 Finistére on the enclosure of Commana: http://www.finisteretourisme.com/enclos-paroissial-de-commana-commana-1?_ga=2.85759825.91573807.1605287544-435743096.1603981364

The CIAP interpretation center on the enclosures such as Commanahttps://www.ciap-enclos.fr/enclos/commana/

Each weekend or most, we tend to go out and see these, the beauty and the choices of Bretagne/Brittany/Breizh are inmense and a lot more than galettes and cider and or beaches! Hope you enjoy this jewel of architecture and history in Commana.

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

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December 6, 2020

Quant Hanvec, Finistére!

And this one was a rescue from older misc posts and I feel deserves one post of its own. We go often to the neighboring dept 29 of Finistére and our vision of small quant towns have been enlarged! This is the case of quant Hanvec!

Hanvec is a town in the Finistère department,29  in the Brittany region between the harbor of Brest and the Monts d’Arrée, in the northern borders of Cornouaille, south-east of Brest and 15 km south of Landerneau.

Eugène Boudin, Norman impressionist painter liked to stayed there. He let himself be seduced by the Breton skies, and by a local lady, Marie-Anne Guédès whom he married on January 14, 1853 in Le Havre. A great watercolourist, Boudin stayed many times at the manor of Kerohan in Lanvoy; he immortalized on his paintings the village, the church, the countryside and village life. One of my favorite painters and see my Honfleur posts.

Some of the things to see there are the Chapel of Lanvoy from the 11C, 16C and 18C, the former manor of Kerliver  14C to 16C, the Maison Herry b.1675. This house, steeped in history, successively town hall, prison, then café at the beginning of the 20C, saw the birth of  Michel Armand Herry on November 29, 1910. Resistance member, belonging to the Ronsard and Marathon network, he was shot dead by the Gestapo on May 19, 1944, just a few months after his marriage. Afterwards baptized “Maison Herry”, it was bought by the town in 2005.

The domaine de Ménez-Meur, vast of 520 hectares , was acquired by the general council of Finistère in 1969 and managed since its creation by the regional natural park of Armorique. The Ménez-Meur estate plays an educational role for the protection and management of natural environments, environmental awareness and contributes to the protection of regional breeds of domestic animals with low numbers such as Armorican cows, white pigs from the West, sheep from the Landes of Brittany, goats from Fossés, Breton black piebald cow etc, and even preserves a genetically reconstituted species: the aurochs. The tourist office of Brittany has more on it: https://www.brittanytourism.com/offers/domaine-de-menez-meur-hanvec-en-1971107/

And the regional natural park of Armorique on the Domaine de Ménez-Meur: https://menez-meur.pnr-armorique.fr/#

We were remark to see passing by Hanvec, the nice imposing Church Saint Pierre (St Peter) in city center/downtown. This is a small town , where Eugéne Boudin describe it in 1867 as a vast town with a spectacular view of the inland hills. Vast history of Sirs of Kerohan and Quélen and many calvaries and monuments to show from old age. The Church of Saint Pierre  is on the side of an older church of which the only remaining parts of the south porch from 1625 . After been almost in ruins it was ordered to rebuilt and finally finished in 1877 with the spiral tower not done until 1879.

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The Church of Saint Pierre has an old porch, of excellent fabrication dating from 1625 well preserved. The bell tower was completed in 1879. Three-navel Latin cross plan style church; bedside with cut-out sides flanked by two sacristies of rectangular plane. The south porch work on Granite-sized stone as well as the bell tower with open bell-chamber and corbally-made gallery, base of the octagonal arrow with a four-sided gallery with a large work in rubble of schist and granite covered with a light coating. Framing of the bays in kersantite and micro diorite stones. Thérèse, the biggest bell weighting 1100 kg and 1,20 meter in diameter was dating from 1964 was damaged and repair in 2013. Five-span nave illuminated by tall bays, octagonal pillars, broken arches, roofed paneling painted in blue on false vaulted arches of warheads resting on vegetal décor units located between the tall stained galls windows; the floor covered with granite slabs. The retable of the Rosary dates from the 17C. The Church houses the statues of St. Peter, Holy Philomène, Saint Nicodemus, Saint Corentin, Saint Herbot and a Crucifix of the 17C.

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You are moved by the monument to the Fallen, by the above church. Or the monument aux morts.  The monument named 168 soldiers dead for France including 136 from WWI and 27 from WWII. It has the name of Etienne Rozuel inscribe on the canon . Surprise, he was born here in 1853 and goes on to a distinguished career that takes him to Mayotte in 1870, Saigon in 1872, on the sea of China and Japan in 1875, to Indochina area in 1880, with the float at Tonkin in 1883, until finally died at  Tientsin in 1875 during a French expedition in China.

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The city of Hanvec on its heritage: https://www.mairie-hanvec.fr/patrimoine.php

Hope you enjoy the off the beaten path town of Hanvec as we did passing by. And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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December 6, 2020

Sizun enclose church!!!

And moving right along updating these older posts in my blog and why not continue a bit with the famous enclose churches of Bretagne! This time will bring you to Sizun,which already has newer posts too.

Ok so driving around the region of the Bretons or Bretagne or Breizh (in Breton language) we come often over to our neighborly department 29 the Finistére. This past Sunday or Palm Sunday or dimanche des Rameaux or Domingo de Ramos we went over to Sizun.  In getting there , we took the N165 with heavy traffic and deadly accident as well as near misses but we made it alright. Passing on the road D18 we passed by the picturesque town of Hanvec.

We arrived at Sizun, and the first thing we did was eat lol! right off the D18 you go into city center and just around the big square, Pl Charles de Gaulle,  we see the restaurant L’Orée des Monts, a very nice friendly place with good food and nice prices. We pay 16.50€ per person with pizza orientale with chorizos, calzones, tagliatelle bolognaise, pizza four cheeses, and pizza Indienne; all down with good pints of beer pelforth brune and grimbergen as well as coffee espresso for all. Now we were ready for the day. Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/LOr%C3%A9e-des-Monts-990430197746791/

Then , we got to one of the exceptional Parrish sites of the Finistére; that of the Theater Church of Sizun. this is a monumental building including several ones all surrounded by a wall that is why they are known as enclos or enclosures. Here you come for the relics of Saint Suliau, who taken to the banks of the river Rance with four picks created magic that the wild animals who came to ravages his vineyards become domesticated, according to the legend.

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First ,you see the Triumphal door or Arc de Triomphe giving access to the cemetery which once was located around the church,one of the most beautiful in Brittany. It is 14,5 meters long formed by 3 arches separated by Corinthian columns and capitals. The Central part is topped by a calvary. It is estimated done by 1588-89.

The Ossuary is next to the Arc and divided into three records with decorated weapons of the Rohan family;the lower register contains stones in yellow granite and semicircular windows and has a date engraved of 1585.  The third register is formed by a series of twelve niches separated by fluted Doric pilasters in which the statue of the twelve apostles are place. At the top of the pediment above the arms of Rohan you see the date entered of 1588, and there is a small statuette of Saint Suliau holding away small sticks.

The bell tower is based on four pillars and has no foundation! It is one of the best of the Breton school, with 24 meters high tower and on the gallery 30 meters high octagonal shapes, with dates on it of 1728 and 1735.

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Going around the Church of Sizun, we see sometimes at eye level several depictions of animals with the church main door adorned with a pediment with the face of a philosopher, birds and characters of the harvest of wine. You see at the top its seven pigeons surmounted on lanterns and richly decorated. The sacristy is link to the choir in octagonal shape.

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The high altar and the altarpiece is the expression of Mary Joseph, the child, characters from Peter and Paul on either side of the tabernacle. You gaze up and see animals fox, lion, eagle, lamb and also a child as the resurrection.  Above Joseph and the Child you see the statue of Saint Suliau, the Patron saint of the parish. On the other side you see the Virgin and the Child.  Left in the Chorus the altarpiece of Saint Augustine and the history of the Holy Trinity. At the top the statue of Jesus with the world face turn towards the Altar. It is done with limestone of Laval the others in oak.At right the altarpiece of the baptism of Jesus, under the statue of Saint Yves,and the St Peter altarpiece opposite Saint Guillaume, the right pillar is Saint Maudetz. The pulpit to preach is from 1784.

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The retable of the Rosary is from 1668  the most remarkable is the pink column that frame the picture of the Rosary. They are chiseled in vine where animals and characters flolics. The statues of Saint Dominic and St Catherine of Siena. In the upper part the statue of the Virgin and Child frame by two angels. Opposite this altarpiece you see the oldest statue of Saint Saliau, gothic, polychrome. the altarpiece of the north transept ,of the dying two very sober columns that represent death of a faithful in the presence of Dom Michel le Nobletz a Breton noble missionary of the 17C from each side of the statues of St Peter and St Paul.

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The glass enclosure showcase is not a museum but actual objects and liturgical clothings which are part of the heritage of the parish. ON occasion of pardons, chalices, ciborium ,the bust of Saint Saliau, statue of the Virgin takes place in the festivities. The most important pieces are: Bust reliquary of Saint Saliau, relics embedded in his head, it is sterling silver made in 1625. The statue of the Madonna and Child in silver 17C; A chalice from 1660 in silver ; A silver ciborium punch of 1780, and the gilded silver chalice of Saint Eloy 16C. 

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The city of Sizun on the enclosure: http://www.mairie-sizun.fr/fr/information/83056/l-enclos-paroissial

The CIAP interpretation center on the enclosures such as Sizun: https://www.ciap-enclos.fr/enclos/sizun/

These are wonderful historically here in Bretagne and of course gorgeous architecture, we have tried to see them all. Hope you enjoy this one at Sizun.

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

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