For our annual road trip of the year we chose to stay in France to visit Brittany!
Its wild coasts, its turquoise waters, its castles full of history, many people can’t imagine the amazing landscapes that Brittany it has to offer.
Our road trip is divided in two parts :
- The first, from Saint-Malo to Cap Frehel, in a AirBNB;
- The second, for a new adventure … 5 days travelling by Van
Needless to say that his trip satiated our thirst for freedom and escape.
The big day has arrived, after spending the first part of our trip between Ille-et-Vilaine and Côtes-d’Armor : we start our first road trip by Van.
5 days to go around the Brittany coast with a tight schedule: Pink Granite Coast, Crozon Peninsula, Glénan islands, Quimper… without forgetting to leave a room for the unexpected surprises because that’s what we are looking for in this trip.
Disconnect from our everyday way of life, reconnect with nature, go back to simple things, with the option to go where we want when we want.
We arrive at Keltic Van in Plougonven, Finistère, where we are welcomed by Anabela, the boss of the rental van company.
There we meet our companion for the next 5 days, a brand new Peugeot expert ! After a very precise briefing and an exchange about our trip we are off the road, excitement is at its height!
Day 1 : Pink Granite Coast – Côtes-d’Armor
The trademark of Brittany is its customs trails with its GR34 along the coast. For our first hike we chose the famous Pink Granite Coast. It extends over 10 km on the towns of Perros-Guirec, Trégastel, Pleumeur-Bodou et Trébeurden.
The weather is changing but we expected it and it does not spoil our walk. Landscape is beautiful, exceptional colors; orange/pink of the rocks, changing blue of the sea and the threatening grey of the sky.
Our walk lasted about 1 hour and a half, we just follow the coast and turned back but it is possible to make a loop through the land.
Check the hike here
We found almost all of our hiking trails on the Cirkwi website which also offers kayaking, paddle tours and points of interest to visit.
Back to the Van and it’s already time to look for our first spot for the night. Thanks to the app Park 4 night, we find a unique place.
Park 4 night allows to find different types of spots: campsites, public parking with access to water and amenities, and our favorite option: spots in the wilderness; far, far from civilization.
It’s on the peninsula of Santec, facing the Batz island that we chose to spend our night. The spot is amazing, we have a view to almost 360 ° on the sea.
Once the van is parked, without further ado we put the outside table and chairs to admire the first sunset of our adventure in Van.
The evening goes very fast, with the falling night the freshness arrived so we chose to go back into the Van to finish our dinner.
Eating and sleeping in a Van requires organization, especially when you can not take advantage of the outdoors to spread out, but that’s when we realize that we do not need much to live, and that our big apartments could be much smaller.
Try the experience in Van is also disconnect from living in the fast lane. No more TVs, no more computers, almost no smartphones, no more metro, no more people in a hurry. Just us, nature and its sweet sound.
Day 2 : Crozon Peninsula – Finistère
We spent a long comfortable night, it’s time to draw the curtains for the first time. Waking up facing the sea without anyone around is magical. For this second day we take the time, breakfast outside, reorganization of the Van from night mode to day mode, fold the bed, put the seats back, store breakfast …
The Van is very well equipped, with a fridge, a small gas stove, a sink with a water reserve of 20 litters and lots of small cupboards to store our stuff. All is ready, it’s time to hit the road again …
What I particularly liked in Iceland were the unexpected discoveries on the side of the road. I found back this feeling in this road trip by giving ourselves the opportunity to stop and enjoy the scenery along the coast.
We are now on the Crozon Peninsula, in the heart of the Regional Natural Park of Armorique. The landscape is impressive, big rocks eroded by the sea and the wind, all at a height to make you dizzy.
There are many views along the coast including:
- Pointe de Penhir,
- Pointe de Dinan
- Cap de la chèvre
It’s super cloudy, wind is blowing and it is difficult to walk, be careful not to get too close to the edge of the cliffs by this conditions! The view is breathtaking and it feels like we’re back in Scotland.
Going down from the pointe de Pen-Hir we see a huge beach, the Veryach’s beach. Heavenly when the weather is good, but neither the rain nor the wind stop us. On the beach we take on a path that allows us to walk on the cliff behind the beach. You can walk to the pointe de Tavelle.
Through Cirkwi we can also have a stand-up-paddle trip proposed by the Leo Lagrange club in Camaret-sur-mer which allows you to go along the creeks and cliffs of the peninsula.
Price : 31€
After braving the wind and rain it’s time to find a spot for the night. Let’s go to the Cap de la Chèvre. Be careful this spot is not easy to find and it’s only reachable to cars and Vans.
Despite the GPS point of the app, we had to use Google Earth to reach this location by looking for practicable paths. The one recommended by the GPS led us to a dead end.
Once there, it’s even more impressive than the day before. This time we are literally on a cliff, surrounded by nature and with a breathtaking view on the ocean. Since the wind and rain didn’t stopped for the entire day, the evening and the night were therefore agitated.
Sleeping in a slope and with the wind shaking the Van in all directions was not necessarily very reassuring but the real gift was waking up here… we let you judge…
Day 3 : From Locronan to the pointe du Raz – Finistère
We made a little tour on the trails around our spot of the night before leaving, then we head to the pointe du Raz with a stop by the town of Locronan. One thing is sure Locronan deserves its label of the “most beautiful villages in France”.
Medieval and timeless, the city has an architecture and a character that will make you go back centuries. Its large paved central square, its beautiful granite houses., it’s very small but we loved walking there.
We also found many small craftsmen and especially the one called “Art Breton” located 13 rue du Prieure; which made us discover his ancestral knowledge of the Breton embroidery.
Pointe du Raz
We continue our day at the pointe du Raz, a highly tourist place and for good reason … the place is magical. Its rocky promontories rising up to 72 meters high, plunge directly into the Iroise sea and it’s beautiful!
The site is big and you can take a nice walk. Warning signs indicate a limit not to cross, again if the weather is not good do not venture. Hopefully, it was a good day for us and we were able to enjoy completely the place.
For walkers a trail from the pointe du Van to the pointe du Raz will let you discover its beautiful coast on 15km.
First the effort, then the comfort, we wanted to take some time to rest and enjoy the Vanlife. We do some research on Google Earth, we identify a spot for the evening.
Less cut from the world than the previous ones but once again facing the sea, perfect to admire the sunset with a good meal.
Day 4 : Glenan Islands – Finistère
Today head to Bénodet. We leave the Van on the mainland and boarding to discover the Glenan Islands. On today’s program : visit the island of Saint Nicolas and cruise in the archipelago. After an hour of rough crossing, we reach Saint-Nicolas.
For having visited a few days before the Bréhat island, Saint-Nicolas seems very small, yet it is the main island of the archipelago!
A few houses, a restaurant, a diving center and a wind turbine to supply the island with electricity. The tour is made pretty quickly but the landscape is beautiful: white sand, turquoise water despite a grey sky.
We arrived at low tide which allowed us to discover the sandbank of Saint Nicolas, the “Tombolo” which led us to the island of Bananec.
Once we finish our picnic on the beach we are off for the cruise to discover the nine main islands and a large number of islets.
Sometimes islands only populated by birds, sometimes by kite surf and sailboards, this small archipelago keeps its promises, nature first and a total disconnection.
There are several departure points and formulas to visit the Glenan archipelago.
We took the “vedettes de L’Odette” from Bénodet for 45€ /person.
Back on the ground, the weather is getting better, we decided to do some shopping for the evening, Keltic Van lent us a mini BBQ it’s time to use it!
Back on our spot of the previous day. We install the awning to protect us from the wind, it’s quick and easy to assemble.
We cooked a bit, mounted the outdoor table, launched the BBQ then we settle in front of the ocean to enjoy the landscape.
Being able to enjoy outdoors with a Van really make experience nicer, for sure we have adopted the “Van life”!
Day 5 : Quimper and Keltic Van way back
It’s already the last day of our road trip in Van. Time has gone so fast that it really seems too short.
Me who thought that the lack of shower and toilet would be complicated for 5 days, we quickly adapted to this nomad life, so it has positive sides. It’s time to do some cleaning, the Van is equipped with so many small storage that we spreaded out our stuff everywhere.
Before going back around Morlaix to return the Van, we make a final stop in the city of Quimper for a gradual return to civilization. The city seems very big, after Locronan. Quimper is classified city of history and art and there we discover a beautiful city center without forgetting of course the wonderful Saint-Corentin’s Cathedral.
This time it is, it’s time to return our companion to his owner with so many memories in our heads. Thanks to Keltic Van for lending us this Van for 5 days, what an experience!
If you want to rent a Van in Brittany you can check the website
Anabela can offer you 3 vans :
- The classic Volkswagen California
- The roomy Mercedes Viano Marco Polo
- Our companion the Peugeot expert
Low season :
Middle season :
High season :
740€/week from 06/29 to 07/13
940€/week from 07/14 to 08/31
We hope that this article has given you plenty of ideas for a future road trip in Van or in Brittany, do not hesitate to send us your questions!