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  • Mikebond's Profile Photo

    SPREV

    by Mikebond Updated Sep 22, 2005

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    Fondest memory: SPREV stands for "Sauvegarde du Patrimoine Religieux En Vie" ("Protection of the Living Religious Heritage").
    It is a non-profit organisation of students who lead you to the discovery of the Breton churches and enclos paroissiaux.
    Most of them are young women and most of them are able to make the explanation very interesting, with anecdotes and questions to the visitors. Only a young man who told us about the Roscoff church was quite boring.
    However, it was sad to realize that this "job" is not well rewarded, since the tourists who really want to enrich their culture are very few. In a church, my parents and I were the only people who listened to the guide.
    You can find more information about SPREV here.

    our SPREV guide in Saint-Th��gonnec
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  • pfsmalo's Profile Photo

    Credit cards for toll booths in Brittany.

    by pfsmalo Written Jul 27, 2011

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: If you stay in Brittany you have no need for toll booths, there aren't any!!!!! Due to an ancient law dating back to Queen Anne of Bretagne, it is forbidden to create toll roads so no paying even on the freeways. If you are coming through St Malo, you can go as far down as Nantes south and to Laval on the road to Paris w/out paying, in fact all over the 4 departements (counties) that make up the Brittany region.

    What conversion are you talking about ? I've had my current card since sept. 2008 and it has not been changed. In France we have always had pin-numbers when needed, although some shops still have the old sliding-through-the-slot machines. But on motorways where we have to pay, we just put the card in, and the machine spits it back out again, w/out having to type the pin number, so I imagine your card will work. There's hundreds of Brits pass through here every day so I don't suppose they all change their C.C.

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  • Mikebond's Profile Photo

    "Enclos paroissiaux"

    by Mikebond Updated Nov 18, 2005

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    Favorite thing: An enclos paroissial (above you see the plural form; the English translation is "parish enclosure") is a typical religious architecture in Bretagne.
    It consists of:
    1) a church;
    2) a charnel house (it can also be used as a normal chapel);
    3) a calvaire, the real symbol of Breton faith. Calvaires are big sculptures representing the Crucifixion and other Biblic scenes;
    4) a cemetery (not obligatory).
    These four elements are located within an enclosure, which explains the name.
    I have visited quite a lot of them during my last trip to Bretagne: Saint-Jean-du-Doigt, Saint-Thégonnec, Guimiliau and more.

    the enclos paroissial of Guimiliau
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  • bzh's Profile Photo

    Granite and slate

    by bzh Written Mar 15, 2003

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    Favorite thing: The typical Breton house is built of granite with a slate roof. Granite being expensive, modern houses tend to reduce the actual stone to door and window frames but the older ones are completely built of stone. Granite and slate are exacavated locally. The granite can be of a variety of hues, typically light grey, yellow-brown or pink. The latter one comes from the cliffs of pink granite in the North of the region and is very particular. Its colour comes from the pink feldspath part of the stone is made of. The slate can go from deep black to grey or yellow.

    Typical Breton house
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  • bzh's Profile Photo

    Beatiful beaches

    by bzh Written Feb 26, 2003

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    Favorite thing: Is this Barbados? No, it is Brittany. To be precise, this picture was taken in the Crozon peninsula, not far from the town of Camaret. Beaches in Brittany are usually of the finest and whitest sand, formed from the break up of granite cliffs. Occasionaly, the sand will glitter with mica. It is ideal to drop a beach towel on and for sand castles.

    Beach in the Crozon peninsula
    Related to:
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    • Beaches
    • Romantic Travel and Honeymoons

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    Gwen Ha Du

    by bzh Updated Feb 26, 2003

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    Favorite thing: You cannot miss the black and white Breton flag, called Gwen Ha Du in Breton, which literally means "black and white". The flag is a comparatively recent creation. It first appeared in 1923, created by Morvan Marchal, the founder of the Breiz Atao (Free Brittany) movement. It was originally meant to provide a unifying symbol to all Bretons who wanted independance from France. Nowadays, it is the emblem of a Brittany that is comfortable with being part of France while being proud of its unique cultural heritage.

    Gwen Ha Du
    Related to:
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  • bzh's Profile Photo

    Seagulls

    by bzh Written Feb 26, 2003

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    Favorite thing: Seagulls can be found everywhere in Brittany, especially around towns and harbours. They are very opportunistic birds that feed on any garbage thrown by man. Their cry is very distinctive and is a permanent fixture of the coastal areas. It can be very annoying if you are not used to it. However, the opposite is true. The first time I moved away from Brittany to the East of France, it took me a few months to realise that what I was finding so strange in my new town was the silence.

    Seagull flight
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  • bzh's Profile Photo

    Yellow beauties with a sharp twist

    by bzh Written Mar 13, 2003

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    Favorite thing: This flower is called genêt in French but I don't know its name in English.

    Anyway, you will find it all along the Breton coast in summer, sometimes up to such an extent that it turns the moors yellow. Beware though, it is armed with big pointed thorns that will easily embed themselves in unwary fingers.

    Gen��ts on the Breton coast

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  • Toyin's Profile Photo

    Tourism Office on Ouessant.

    by Toyin Written Dec 23, 2004

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    Favorite thing: Usually, this is the first port of call for visitors setting foot on the Island. This is where you make enquiries as to where to rent bicycles or vechicle to tour the Island.
    You are also given pamflets showing areas of interests.

    Office de Tourisme
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    Renting Bicycles on the Island.

    by Toyin Updated Dec 23, 2004

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    Favorite thing: What I discover on the Island is that it is a bit expensive to rent these Bicyles. You pay an average of 10 euros for a period of few hrs. It is more than that in some cases.
    However, it is better to just walk the Island which is about 8 km by 4km.

    Bicycle rentals
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    Compagnie Maritime Penn ar Bed

    by Toyin Updated Dec 23, 2004

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    Favorite thing: In order to visit the three important Islands of Ouessants, Molène, and Sein..It is this company that you need to contact. It is cheaper if you in a group of 3 or 6. It cost about 50 euros for 3 people.

    Boat Cruise in Brest
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  • bzh's Profile Photo

    German legacy

    by bzh Written Mar 12, 2003

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    Favorite thing: During World War II, the Germans, who had invaded France, fortified the coast of Brittany to fight off a potential allied attack. The remanants of this chapter of history can still be found along the coast in the form of concrete bunkers. They are only shells nowadays but they give you a good idea of what it was like to live in them. Winters in those small concrete boxes must have been horrendous.

    Bunker near Le Conquet
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  • elgin99's Profile Photo

    Sunsets and ocean

    by elgin99 Written Jun 1, 2006

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    Fondest memory: What I remind for first, if I am thinking for that region? For the sunsets. Unique and unforgettable. To sit at beach and look for the colours, hear to the song of wind and waves and dream a while, until it get dark. Only then we went home, slowly...
    What a mood.
    In that tip are some beautiful pictures. I am sure you want travel soon.

    ocean at evening at ocean Sunset near Concaneau darkness coming Sunset
    Related to:
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  • bzh's Profile Photo

    The guys that will get you out of trouble

    by bzh Updated Mar 12, 2003

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    Favorite thing: The Société Nationale de Sauvetage en Mer (SNSM), i.e., the French sea rescue organisation is a non-profit organisation. They are partly financed by the state and regions but also rely heavilly on donations. They are all volunteers and will get you out of trouble for free. So, when you are in a restaurant or a bar and you see a small money box in the shape of a rescue boat with the letters SNSM on it, drop a few coins.

    For more information: http://www.snsm.eu.org/fr/

    SNSM emergency station in Le Conquet

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  • illumina's Profile Photo

    Lunchtime

    by illumina Written Mar 24, 2010

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    Favorite thing: Lunchtimes are taken very seriously around here. Turn up in any town between about 12 and 2pm, and the streets are likely to be totally deserted. Shops shut for at least an hour, usually two.

    Basically if you want to enjoy a bustling Breton scene, go early. People will start to reappear later in the afternoon, but most markets are held in the mornings anyway!

    Related to:
    • Budget Travel
    • Backpacking

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