Tuck on the side of the grand Basilica, there is an entrance to come in to the cloisters right by the treasury and store of the complex.At the cloisters there is held temporary and permanent exhibition of arts, and paintings from many periods. I pass by here often as live within 10 kms and on my way to work, so finally decided to go in as there was...more
St Anne was the mother of the Virgin Mary, so the fact that she's the patron saint of women in various roles (women in labour, housewives, grandmothers and unmarried women) isn't very surprising, although her link to cabinet makers and horser riders would seem a little more baffling.She was adopted as Brittany's patron saint in 1914 and is...more
St Anne d'Auray is 'big' on John Paul II, which is not surprising, as he visited here on 20 September 1996. It's not every place of pilgrimage that manages to attract a Pope during his papacy, and there has been a noticeable upswing in pilgrim numbers since his visit - currently about 600,000 per annum, with the largest number visiting on 26 July,...more
This ornate set of steps stand at the opposite end of a huge lawn from the Basilica and have no visible signage. They have no obvious purpose since they lead from nowhere to nowhere over an unthreatening section of gravel, and had me bamboozled for a good while until I did some background research.It turns out that the Scala Sancta ('Holy Steps' in...more
The Wall of Remembrance at the Breton war memorial is a place that I'll never forget for a whole host of reasons.Firstly, it's staggeringly beautiful in its pared back simplicity. The pale stone panels listing the war casualties village by village are interspersed by the Stations of the Cross (fourteen events in the trial, crucifixion and burial of...more
One million Bretons answered the call up during World War I, but a horrifying 25% never returned, about double the rate of casualties suffered by other French troops. The 250,000 Bretons died equates to one in fourteen of Brittany's entire population, leading to a whole slew of social problems in postwar society, including a severe gender...more
Before we visited Brittany, I'd not heard anything about Sainte-Anne d'Auray, and it was only a short but intriguing comment in our guidebook that persuaded us to take a detour through the town on the way back from Carnac.As soon as we turned into town, the huge tower of the Basilica reared into view, and it began to dawn on me that this was not...more
The appalling Breton casualties in World War I are commemorated in the exquisitely moving Breton war memorial and the surrounding wall of remembrance.Sadly, humanity displays a depressing inability to learn the lessons of the past, and memorial to commemorate the "The War to End All Wars" was completed less than a decade before the outbreak of the...more
The one impression that you'll probably come away with from visiting the war memorial in Sainte-Anne d'Auray is that it commemorate Breton - rather than French - war casualties.Despite attempts to achieve national homogenisation of identity under a French banner, the Breton sense of nationalism remains endearingly robust. To reinforce this point,...more
Traditional French with a hotel next to it, serving all. right across from the basilica. It has been here since 1840 doing the right things in the kitchen and with great service.The resto is usually full of pelegrins and visitors ,but today was fairly ok;not crowded. the food is good, seafood and fish par excellence! Traditional French proposing...more
very nice place open in 2012 by young chefs traditional food and bar à vins a great place to spent while overlooking the great basilique sainte anne.Open for lunch and dinner except wednesdays and sundaysprovides formules of 16€ for entrée/plat/dessert14€ for entrée/plat or plat/dessertand 10€ for the plat du jour the meal of the day with a choice...more
Its on the circuit as one of the best creperies of Brittany, sitting right across the basilica of St Anne, the biggest religious center in Brittany and second in France.The place is rustic, nice historical, serve with care by the family as far as small daughter serving. The food is authentic Breton,with flag and all. Nice family ambiance ,friendly...more
Well I live about 10 kms from here that is about 6 miles, and as the expressway is sometimes busy especially n summer months I do take this route to avoid traffic on the road D19 that goes into and connects with Auray on the D17 coming on the back.It is all country here, farming area, and lovely ,quiet , real nice folks who always will come and...more
By auto you take the Autoroute Paris/Rennes A11, or expressway N24 Rennes/Vannes,or expressway N165, Nantes/Auray.By trainarriving at Gare d'Auray, my train station to Paris MontparnasseGare d’Auray (TGV)local trains TER Bretagnehttp://www.ter-sncf.com/regions/bretagne/fr/By busbus transport of the dept of...more
For all your gifts ideas from Sainte Anne d'Auray this is the best. I live nearby so stop by almost every day on this area, and the store is always full with great service.Of course, many are of religious background been next to the Basilica and a center of pilgrimage but there are other gifts as well. Its a witness gift to your visit here, sublime...more
As you might expect from a town that's a magnet for pilgrims, there are a number of shops specialising in a bewildering range of religious paraphernalia. Rosaries, crucifixes, devotional books, CDs of religious music - if it's got even the most tenuous link to Catholicism, chances are that it's on sale here.Unsurprisingly the best selling lines of...more
Compared to other more 'first division' tourist attractions in this region, Sainte-Anne d'Auray is a bit off the beaten track, especially for visitors from outside Brittany. The happy outcome of its relative obscurity for all but non-Bretons and those with a particular devotion to St Anne is that it isn't besieged by hoardes of visitors, except for a couple of notable festivals during the year.
The majority of the 600,000 pilgrims that visit St Anne d'Auray visit on her feast day, 26 July. There are also major celebrations here on Pentecost, which falls 50 days after Easter (a Sunday some time in May - check the exact date on which this will fall in the year that you're planning to visit).
I hate crowds, so I would probably go out of my way to avoid visiting on the day of St Anne's 'Grand Pardon'. However, if you'd like to experience a truly Breton religious ceremony honouring their patron saint, then this could be ideal for you: just bear in mind that the village will be packed out, so accommodation and parking will be at an absolute premium and other tourist amenities such as restaurants will likely be packed out.
Yves Nicolazic was born at Pluneret,April 3 1591,and died on May 13 1645Yves Nicolazic , is the farmer breton that told of a vision of Sainte Anne, the mother of Virgen Mary,and grandmother of Jesus. The dreamt of a vision and later found a statue in the fields of the Sainte Anne and this field became the place of pilgrimage we know today and the...more
A wonderful cupola dome monument representing all 7 parrishes of Brittany in memory of those fallen in WWIa moving place to the left facing the basilica de Sainte Anne d'Auray and seldom notice but its there big facing you, a must to see.respect to those who fell brave,and to know a bit more of the history of France and WWI.a bit of historyIt is...more
an impressive monument to the count de Chambord amongst trees on way out of town. After the discovery of the virgen Ste Anne at Auray in 1624 the royal families of France take the town in its arms from 1628.All the great nobles of the house of Bourbon came here beginning by a wish of Anne of Austria queen of France that after a gift of statue of...more
well walking is always nice, on any town,and we love it. Here we are at 10 kms from home ,and on my way to work. It is a tranquil space to walk the gardens, the cloister gardens, the treasury, the monuments and statues all over and the grand Basilica all gears towards the great Sainte Anne, the mother of Mary, grandmother of Jesus Christ,and patron...more