There is no other part of Brittany that offers as many riches as Finistere – culturally and architecturally it is unique. Apart from its own style of churches, it has its own language, Breton, still heard in many of the inland villages especially in the Monts D'arree. In Nord Finistere every village has its Fest Noz - a village feast day with traditional music and circle dancing, costumed processions, crepes and cidre. There are many wonderful musuems across the region, including the wolf museum in our own village of Le Cloitre. Finistere is famous for its varied gardens and floral towns and round-a-bouts. MORLAIX, pictured right, is the bustling centre of the region; famed for it's 19th century viaduct, 16th century timber houses and the beautiful Baye de Morlaix. The charming city has a wealth of restaurants and bars, museums and galleries, and a wonderful Saturday market full of local produce. Along the Morlaix river, near the yachts, you can see egrets and comorants stretching their wings. If you like to find your seafood the coast has many fine beaches where you can find shellfish or their shells. 3 km from the campsite is the natural reserve of the Cragou, home to montague and harrier hawks, dartmoor ponies, beavers and many rare fauna and flora found on heath and peat lands. The campsite is situated in the conservation parc d'armorique and benefits from no encroaching houses, industry or busy roads.
Our little camping is nestled in the forested hills of the MONTS D'ARREE, pictured left. An area of outstanding natural beauty. Curving across central Finistère, separating the north of the county from the south, or Léon from Cornouaille. The Monts d'Arrée form a land apart. The craggy tops look at once forbidding and compelling – they should appeal to those of a romantic disposition. Our favourite is Montagne St-Michel, an extraordinary rounded hill topped by a chapel battered almost ceaselessly by the winds on this exposed height since it was built in the 17th century. The nearby Lac du Drennec is a large body of water nestled below these wild hills. Perfect for swimming and boating. There is a nice sandy beach, badminton and table tennis and a children's play park. Numerous walks lead off around the lake and the surrounding hills. There are donkeys in the Monts d'Arrée, you can hire them and trek across the moors unaccompanied. In the little mountain town of Huelgoat, the Jardin d'Argoat is an Arbatorium of rare and exotic trees. Not to be missed is the very ancient forest with enormous boulders, tumbled by giants. Along the gorge the footpaths lead down to the old silver mine, past the trembling rock through the land of Arthurian legends.
You can't come to Brittany and not mention the sea, and though we're tucked away inland, the sea is a strong presence in the area and reached in 30 to 40 minutes. You can almost taste the salt in the air some days. Finistere's beaches are plentiful and varied, from 3 miles stretches of white sand at Plage de Dossen to the gorgeous unspoilt cove of BEG-AN-FRY near Locquirec, pictured right. Our three favourites are Carantec, Plougasnou and Les Sables Blanc, which would be more at home in the Caribbean than Brittany. The port of Roscoff is worth a look, famous for it's onion festival and the neighbouring Ile de Batz. Further west lies the town of Landerneau, home of the famous Rohan bridge, which is the only bridge in Europe that still has people living on it. It even has a restaurant on it! The town itself is bustling and dynamic, it's days of prosperity left it with a real taste for markets, festivals and exhibitions. Worth a visit is the Le Clerc exhibition centre with its annual world class art exhibition. Lastly of note is the city of Brest, though a fair drive from us at Des Bruyeres, it's worth a day trip with the kids. Oceanopolis is an aquarium of 3 pavilions with varying temperatures from arctic to tropical. Its enormous. There are touching tanks and feeding times and even a shark tank too!