From glorious walled cities and castles to extravagant churches, Brittany’s built heritage looks extremely appealing while recalling the concerns and obsessions of Breton society down the centuries. Traditional farms and manors are scattered liberally across the countryside and the Church commissioned both fine and modest buildings from major cathedrals and abbeys to the quaintest, tiniest chapels.


  • Centre-ville de Morlaix (29)

    Urban heritage

    Brittany’s big cities and major ports have put tourism and culture at the top of the agenda. They’re jam-packed with interesting things to do. In addition, Brittany has an exceptional number of cathedral cities, most not large urban centres, but on a delightful scale. As to petites cités de caractère, they’re not cities in the conventional sense at all, but they are full of charm.
  • Mouillage à Belle-Ile-en-Mer

    Maritime heritage

    Such was the beauty of Brittany’s numerous traditional fishing ports that once the tourists began to arrive, many doubled as resorts. Next, a number of totally new resorts arose in prime beach locations and then along came a spate of marinas offering berths in one of the most famous sailing destinations in the world, producing many of the planet’s greatest sailors.
  • Château de Vitré

    Castles & forts

    Brittany’s shores bristle with defensive castles and forts as its long tracts of coast were vulnerable to invaders. But now these places, some in ruin, some still lovingly maintained, are assailed for their beauty. You can visit a whole host of Breton castles and manors inland too – you can even stay in some, converted into hotels or B&Bs.


  • Chaumière

    Rural heritage

    As a strongly rural region, Brittany has preserved a fair amount of its country heritage, notably its characteristic farms built around a square courtyard. There are also tidal mills and windmills, some gorgeous rustic industrial buildings, and then the écomusées, intense, small-scale local museums recalling specific traditions, from textile working to algae harvesting, via specialist fishing.


  • Religious heritage

    In Brittany, the Church has been an extremely powerful force since its inception –although just as a distinctive Celtic brand of Catholicism developed in the region, so did a slightly different religious architecture. The elaborate outdoor carved calvaries may be the most unusual element to many a parish church, but, be it little or large, you can’t mistake a Breton religious house.