Anglo-French Travel 2017 travel blog

Patrice with crabs

Sea food selection

Plus wine and charcuterie for a picnic on the beach

Towers of Quimper Cathedral

Well preserved Quimper wooden house

Today was an easy start at 9:30 as we did not have large distances to travel. Bretagne (Brittany) only became part of France in the 15th century and still preserves much of its Bretange culture, sense of independence and language. Sign Post are in two languages so Concarneau is Konk Kerne and Quimper is Kemper.

Our first stop was at a factory making traditional baked goods and we watched the crepe making and the traditional buttery cake of Bretagne being transferred from baking tin to packaging. The countryside in the area is lush with many plants suitable to a temperate climate - palms and even one banana plant was spotted.

Our bus could not get right to our next destination so we set off on foot, along with our driver Willy down a small road, the a track through a foresee area coming out at a bay and across the sand to a very simple shed inside which were two huge tanks filled with baskets of shellfish. The owner took us out to some picnic tables and explained, with Jan translating, the process of growing oysters which they do in this bay as well as growing a variety of other shellfish. Once his wife Patrice had dealt with some customers in the shed she took over and what a character and a hard worker involved in every stage of the enterprise. She continued with the explanations then brought out huge crabs which wrapped themselves around her sturdy fingers and then a blue lobster.

In the meantime her husband had been preparing what we expected to be a small tasting plate of oysters but no, out came oysters, prawns, some small bivalves, tiny snail like shells and some larger shellfish plus rye bread then beautiful local butter, two bottles of white wine, lemons and sauces for the shellfish with the appropriate cutlery for extracting creatures from shells then pate and a charcuterie platter. This was our lunch, eaten at very rustic tables on the edge of the bay!

Apparently our photo is now on their Facebook page I think the business is called Penfoulic ( and also on Facebook for the hotel Bayeux). We agreed to this.

Our afternoon venue was Quimper a very attractive city on the confluence of two rivers and the town is beautifully kept with flowers boxes on all the river crossings and around public buildings. Here the wooden houses are beautifully preserved and we had a ride of a Petit Train which took us around the city and then a local guide met us for a tour of the Cathedral and various areas ending in the reconstructed market where unfortunately the architect in a desire for light had not considered the impact of the glass roof on the indoor temperature so now they are seeking a solution. Moral of the story seems to be that architects should pay more attention to function rather than form.

Returned to our hotel and gathered in the bar before deciding to eat in at the hotel as we all wanted an early night ready for an early start tomorrow but at 9o'clock we were still all at the table fooled by the sun and light on the water of the bay.

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