Summer evenings can play havoc with sleep patterns
(work in progress)
This may seem an odd tip, given that long, lazy summer evenings are usually cited a major attraction of holidaying in Northern Europe, but this warning has been written for families visiting this area with young children.
This photo was taken on Ploumanac'h beach at 22:15 at the very beginning of July - just after the summer solstice, which is the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere. As you can see, it is still astonishingly light, and it only got dark well after 23:00 that evening.
We live quite close to the Tropic of Capricorn, and so are used to there not being too much variation in the length of day between summer and winter. As a result, our kids have grown up in a routine of going to bed with the sun and getting up with the sun. Which is all very well until you venture into a region where there are only a few hours of darkness, and enforcing 'bedtime' becomes a mission! As a result, the kids get more and more sleep deprived as time progresses, and - as any parent will tell you - there's absolutely no joy in having a cranky kid in tow!
If you're in a similar position and/or your child finds it difficult to sleep wen it's light, make sure that you select your accommodation with this in mind. Many Breton houses have either wooden shutters or exterior roller blinds, which are primarily designed to protect windows against storms, but which work equally well in blocking light during the summer.
A beach that's more fine gravel than sand ...
(work in progress)
I include this comment under 'warnings and dangers' as I realise that many people are more picky about their beach sand than I am.
Speaking as a recovering geologist, I shoudl point out that the beach at Ploumananc'h is technically fine gravel rather than sand: not surprising when you look at the grain size of the granite boulders from which the sand has formed. Personally I don't think that this is an issue, but if you're looking forward to sinking your feet into fine, soft sand then this will possibly come as a disappointment - if, on the other hand, you're looking for some robust exfoliation, then this may save you the cost of a pedicure!
If you're sensitive to such things, then I suggest that you come equipped with some appropriate footwear (flipflops or Crocs). It's still a stunning beach - especially if you're travelling with kids - so don't let this put you off!