Discover BRITTANY in 2015
BRITTANY is an enchanted region of France. It is, in fact, one of the oldest dating back to the ancient Gauls and was once a province of Rome.It was here that the Celtic language and culture survived to this day leaving Brittany-the land of the Bretons, as the largest stronghold of Celtic culture on the continent of Europe.It shares a common heritage with the Anglo-Saxon tribes who settled in Great Britain during the Middle Ages, hence a common folklore, customs and traditions. In 1977, for example, Brittany’s cultural identity was recognized by a charter from the French government. setting it apart from the rest of France. The region, however, has prospered and is now the fourth most visited region in France..
Brittany is particularly noted for festivals, holidays, and events.
In Finistere, Brittany’s biggest annual festival of Breton music takes place in the third week in July and on the last Sunday in July, Brittany’s largest showcase of Breton occurs.Started in 1992 is now considered the biggest open air music event in France, attracting world class musicians Another international festival of music, however, takes place in August in the port city of Lorient. Started in 1971 this annual event now attracts over 600,000 visitors from all parts of Europe and beyond.. The Vielles Charrues festival which takes place in late Summer is expected to be the largest music festival in France this year, however. It is planned to reach the U.S.mainland sometime in the Fall of 2016. Another important festival is the Blue Fish Nets festival which starts in the Fall in Concarneau (Finistere ) where a parade of fishing boats celebrate a lively tradition in the old city with traditional Breton costumes, music and dance. And In Brest visit the Oceanopolis- 50 aquariums in various sizes and divided into three climactic zones, stocked with over 1000 varieties of fish, and marine life from polar regions, temperate zones and the tropics. In Cornouailles you’ll find one of France’s largest botanical gardens and arboretums where over 3500 plant varieties are on display.. In Celtic Brittany discover the famous stones of Carnac, over 3000 in fact, preceding even Stonehenge in the U.K. On the so-called Emerald Coast of Brittany, a long expanse some 1600 miles of shoreline from north to south on the north- western coast of France visit Dinard and Saint Malo, a series of 5-star resorts like no other; a trove for sailboats and sailing enthusiasts. There’s also Ft. la Latte near Frehel and Fougeres, both walled cities where an assembly of 18th century castles abound and Quiberon and Pleuguenuc, where magnificently preserved small towns are open to visitors year-round. ln Nantes-Brest, you can cycle, hike, boat, and simply trail along at your heart’s content all the way from Pontivy to Nantes, via Josselin and Redon. And while you’re there let’s not forget the wonderful seafood of Brittany. Their “fruits de mer” is well known. Popular shellfish dishes include a range of mussels, scallops
( Coquilles St.Jacques ) crabs, lobsters oysters, to start off, served with Breton fresh garden vegetables and topped off with their famous ” crepes”, Bretton butter cake aka Kouign Amann.. Breton dark cider, white wines from the southern part of the region and local beers are also part of every meal.
While Brittany enjoys nearly a third of the coastline in France there’s plenty of room to spare, to relax, to find peace and tranquility on your next trio across the pond. .But more to the point, it also has an enormous distinctive culture, with lots to see and do. With a population of nearly 5 million and a land mass of nearly 15,000 square miles, it’s a place to discover in 2015. Air France, AIX, and a bevy of American carriers get you
there. From Paris you can train it, go rent-a-car, or bus. The choice is yours.
For more on Brittany go to Let’s Travel’s October showcase:
Discover Brittany in 2015. and see us on Facebook.
Michael Zufolo reporting for Let’s Travel! Radio,