Anglo-French Travel 2017 travel blog

Gannets on the island and in the air

Shag on a rock

Rocky island area with a group of the smaller birds

The marine aquarium at Tregestal


Colourful display

My regal bedroom in what was a convent

We certainly have plenty of variety on this trip and today we headed off fora boat ride around islands off the "Pink granite coast" an area where even the kerbs are made from the local pink granite.

Vivienne, David and I opted for the top uncovered section of the boat and were very pleased as we had a great view. You need to look at the photos but doubt that they do justice to seeing the flights of birds that came over and the magnificence of the gannets as they came close to the boat so that we were viewing them from underneath. As we came near to one island one face of rock appeared to be white and as we neared discovered it was covered in birds. Young gannets spend their time in a "singles club group" until old enough to mate, then have that mate for life; on the death of a mate they are then banished to a widow and widowers area. From the boat we were able to see some involved in a sort of courtship dance.

Although the gannets predominate there are other birds, including guillemots, puffins and shags which I think we call cormorants but I understand the expression ""shag on a rock" as they are not true seabirds and after diving for fish must dry their feathers.

At one island which has a lighthouse, now not operational we were able to get off the boat and explore and were happy to watch a group of seals seemingly at play but probably fishing.

Our trusty driver Willy had been commisssioned once again to purchase sandwiches (actually half a baguette with filling) so we could have longer at out next stop which was the Marine Museum at Tregastel. The museum is within an area of pink granite boulders which form the "rooms" for the displays. In earlier times it was home for troglodytes, then a Chapel and a WWII ammunition dump. Now home to a wonderful display of marine life we were entranced especially by the cuttlefish which seemed to dance for us changing colour before sinking to the bottom with a look of weariness.

There is a breeding program here and a couple of us witnessed two stingray"eggs" being netted form the floor of their enclosure. One proved to be empty but the other will be kept in the nursery till hatching. These egg cases look very much like what we've found on the beach and always called shark eggs.

We all enjoyed a refreshing glacé, mine framboisse sorbet served with a macaron, then on to Dinan a beautifully preserved medieval town in the centre of the new town and we walked to the river, down and down and down, thinking about the trip back up, but after finding a restaurant we ordered our meal, including Rhum Baba for Jan and me, and then walked back and somehow the climb seemed easier than the descent.

Our last evening in France and after St Malo tomorrow we'll take the ferry across to Jersey.

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