One of my very early explorations in Western France took me through northern Brittany and down the coast to La Rochelle, before I took the ferry to the island of Ile d’Oleron. This island offered a pleasurable culinary experience with oysters and exotic wine before I moved south to Bordeaux and even further to the coast at Arcachon; a very lovely week spent exploring western France
It’s time for a return visit to the coast of western France but this time photographing French cuisine, its culture, and places of interest for tourism.
This trip will be planned by deciding which would be the best route, which towns to visit town along the way, it all started at St Malo, with a slight diversion to Mont Saint Michel and then back to Dinan, which is renowned its medieval ramparts, cobblestone streets, and half-timbered houses.
The coastal route will take me to Saint-Brieuc before continuing onto Quimper and then onto Benodet, made it in time for lunch; a seafood platter, Benodet is famous for its yacht racing and beaches on the side of the Odet river and on the seafront promenade.
The walled town of Concarneau in the medieval Ville Close was the next stop; when you go through the main entrance you will find many attractions, tourist shops, clothes shops and restaurants, Concarneau port is also France’s third most important fishing port
If you drive into Concarneau along the coast road it is easy to park next to the beach rather than in the town; you can then walk into town past the sea museum which is worth a visit
My next stop was at the Carnac stones, megalithic site of ancient stones around the village of Carnac in Brittany, great for landscape photography but keep in mind the opening hours, opens late and closes early, it is still worth a visit.
The Carnac Stones consist of both single and rows of standing stones and stone circles. The main group of stone alignments involves 12 converging rows of standing stones stretching more than a kilometer, many of these stones are 4m high and weigh 3.5 Tons
My next stop was at La Rochelle, arrived at La Rochelle in the afternoon, with enough time to enjoy this coastal city, it has been a centre for fishing since the 12th century, with it’s famous Vieux Port (old harbour), with lots of cafes to relax in and enjoy the French cuisine.
The final stop was at the seaside of Arcachon and four districts that are named after the four seasons are indeed a spectacle to behold. Expectedly, these locations inspired my France travel photography. Interestingly, the winter town is celebrated for its relaxing and therapeutic atmosphere from the pine trees and has Royal connections. This ended the first stage of France’s West Coat Tour, but there more to come, do I move onto the wine country of the Loire Valley or go to the Camargue.