Normandy and Brittany are among the most fascinating regions of northern France. Located a few hundred kilometers from Paris, they are easily accessible from the rest of Europe with the numerous low-cost flights that land at one of the three Paris airports. Here an itinerary in Brittany and Normandy to do with your car starting from any European country or even better with a rental car.
These two French regions, rich in natural and artistic beauty, lend themselves to be visited independently with a rental car. The most convenient choice is to reserve the car in advance so that it is ready when you arrive at the airport. Car rent.
1st day: Paris – Rouen (131 km)
Our itinerary in Normandy and Brittany starts from Paris, from where we will leave for Rouen, the historical capital of Normandy. In Rouen are worth visiting the Gothic Cathedral of Notre Dame – the highest in France -, the Gros Horloge – an astronomical clock from the 14th century and the Old Market Square. It was in this square that, during the Hundred Years War, on May 30, 1431, Joan of Arc was burned alive. Finally, the Abbatiale Saint-Ouen (collegiate church of Saint-Ouen), an immense building built between the 14th and 15th centuries in Gothic style, is worth visiting.
Overnight in Rouen.
2nd day: Rouen – Etretat – Honfleur (150 km)
We leave Rouen and head towards the Alabaster coast, until we reach Etretat, a small fishing village on the English Channel coast, famous for its spectacular coast formed by white rock cliffs. After visiting the spectacular cliffs we continue our itinerary until we reach Honfleur, an enchanting fishing port, which still retains its narrow alleys with the characteristic Scandinavian houses, to see also the church of Saint Catherine with a characteristic vaulted ceiling in the shape of an inverted drakkar (Viking boat).
Night in Honfleur.
Day 3: Honfleur – Arromanches – Mont Saint Michel (250 km)
Today we will visit the places of the famous Normandy landings during the Second World War. We stop in Arromanches where we will visit the landing beaches, and where we will see the wrecks of the artificial port of Port Winston, which was used by the Allies to land over 2,500,000 men and 500,000 vehicles decisive to continue the advance in French territory. We will be able to visit the landing memorial. Another place to visit is the Pointe du Hoc, which is located between Omaha and Utah Beach, where the landing took place on June 6, 1944.
Our itinerary at this point can continue for the Normandy peninsula up to Cherbourg and Cap de la Hague, or we can visit the town of Bayeux famous for the Tapestry of Queen Matilde (tapisserie de Bayeux), dating back to the 11th century. This tapestry is 70 meters long and consists of 58 embroidered scenes that recount the Anglo-Saxon conquest of England in 1066. We then continue in the direction of Mont-Saint Michel.
Overnight in Mont Saint Michel.
4th day: Mont-Saint Michel
Full day dedicated to visiting Mont-St. Michel, a Gothic abbey situated on a granite islet surrounded by sandbanks exposed to tidal forces, near the border between Normandy and Brittany. In 1979, UNESCO included Mont Saint-Michel Abbey and its bay on the list of world heritage sites. The place, in addition to the wonderful abbey – where the fort, the crypt, the chapel and the church are built in overlap – is famous for the tides, which are among the highest in the world, the highest tides are between 36 and 48 hours after the full or new moon.
Overnight in Mont-Saint Michel.
5th day: Mont-Saint Michel – St Malo – Dinan (95 km)
Today we enter Brittany, we follow the coastal road, along the way we can make a short stop at Pointe du Grouin, a wild and windswept place. Then we come to St. Malo that we visit. The city is famous for its wonderful granite walls, among other things to visit the cathedral and the tomb of the writer Chateaubriand on the Ile du Grand Bé. From St. Malo we finally head to the picturesque town of Dinan, here we can visit the Jacobins Theater dating back to 1224, the flamboyant Gothic style church of St Malo’s, the Romanesque basilica of St Savior, and the castle of Dinan.
Night in Dinan.
Day 6: Dinan – Cap Fréhel – Perros-Guirec (Pink Granite Coast) (180 km)
We continue our itinerary today towards the Emerald Coast (Côte d’Emeraude) and the Pink Granite Coast (Côte de Granit rose). Our first stop is Cap Fréhel (Emerald Coast) and its cliffs overlooking the sea, it is one of the most famous scenic spots in Brittany. Do not miss a visit to Fort La Latte (XIV century) which is located in scenic position overlooking the sea. If the weather is nice, the view extends to the English island of Jersey. The visit can continue to the Cap d’Erquy. If there is time, you can stop to visit the small village of Moncontour.
We continue our itinerary towards the Pink Granite Coast, crossing the beautiful beaches of St. Quay Portrieux and the Plohua coast, then we cross the Cote du Goelo where we can stop at the scenic spots of Pointe de l’Arcouest and Pointe du Chateau nearby in Plougrescant, or visit the ruins of the Beauport abbey near Paimpol.
Also interesting is the village of Treguier with the beautiful Gothic cathedral of St.Tugdal. We then reach Perros-Guirec, the most important seaside resort on the Pink Granite Coast.
Overnight in Perros-Guirec.
Our itinerary in Brittany and Normandy continues:
FROM PERROS-GUIREC TO BREST — >>>
BREST – QUIMPER
CARNAC – JOSSELIN – RENNES