Saturday, May 24, 2014

Brittany Rain Tour 2014 - Day 1

I took the 9 am train from Paris to Brest, arriving in Brest at 1:30pm.  Expecting cold rain and winds, I started cycling with my sweatshirt and raincoat. It was a bit cloudy, but the sun was trying hard to shine through the clouds, so I quickly became hot and ended up cycling with a t-shirt.  So far I haven't seen more than a couple of drops of rain here in Bretagne. I must have brought the Paris sun with me.

I visited a couple of beaches. I saw Oceanopolis, but didn't know what it was, so I didn't go in. It's a sea-themed science museum with about 50 aquariums. On the way to Landerneau, I saw a campsite, which was closed due to maintenance or public works, scheduled to be reopened in summer... 2013. Glad I booked a hotel instead of planning to camp there :-)

Today has not been very exciting gastronomically speaking. I had a microwave heated chicken pasta dish on the train for lunch. I had dinner at the hotel. The restaurant was not open tonight, but they have meals you can order at the reception. I ordered a fish and rice dinner, with a crumble dessert. They gave me an extra dessert because they had to get rid of it. Maybe it was expired :-)

Today I cycled 26km in Bretagne, plus 5km in Paris to get to the train station.  You can see route I took as recorded by my GPS, below. Tomorrow I head out to Morlaix. Here's the list of cities I plan to visit:

Brest (today)
Landerneau (today)
Morlaix (tomorrow)
Lannion (Monday)
Guingamp (Tuesday)
Saint-Brieuc (Wednesday)
Pléven (Thursday)
Saint Malo (Friday)
Pontorson (Saturday)
Le Mont Saint Michel (Sunday)

The last few bike tours I did, my legs were so sore after two days that I had to spend a whole day in bed recovering. I've tried to reduce the number of kilometers per day for this trip to prevent that from happening again, but I'm still a bit nervous about that, as this time all my hotels are booked, so I have less flexibility. We'll see. So far, I still feel in good shape :-)

The road signs here are often both in French and Breton.  The hotel information pamphlet is also in Breton. You can see a photo of it below.

That's about it for day 1!


  1. A good start, Carmen. It's fortunate that the weather is cooperating. I hope it's that way all the way through. I had to look up Breton to find out what other languages it's related to. Most people in Brittany speak French, though, right?

    1. Yeah they speak French here though I guess with a slightly different accent than in Paris.

      Looks like Breton is dying out. From Wikipedia :

      Having declined from more than one million speakers around 1950 to about 200,000 (out of which only 35,000 use it on a daily basis[4]) in the first decade of the 21st century, of whom 61% are more than 60 years old, Breton is classified as "severely endangered" by the UNESCO Atlas of the World's Languages in Danger. However, the number of children attending bilingual classes has risen 33% between 2006 and 2012 to 14,709