Belle‑Ile, South Brittany

Description: The largest island off Brittany (20km x 9km at its widest, and 15km off the coast of Morbihan), the Belle Ile is deserving of its name. The countryside is green and undulating whilst the beaches are enormous, with beautiful sandy stretches and rocky coves. It is well worth a day trip or an even longer stay.

General information: Website of the Belle Ile tourist office.

Location: About 30 minutes boat ride from Quiberon on the south east coast of Brittany.

Our recommendations: In the winter months you can watch the incredible spectacle of barnacle picking where the locals brave the cliffs and waves to collect barnacles.  These crustaceans are mainly exported to Spain where they are considered a delicacy.

There are 60 beaches along la Belle Ile and walkers will love exploring along the coast. The main town is Le Palais, which features a star-shaped fort which is also a museum dedicated to the island’s history.

Every August there is an international opera festival – the Festival Lyrique en Mer – which features some of hottest new talent from the world of opera.

For the children: Leave the car on the mainland and hire bicycles to explore the island’s 200km of trails, 35km of which are waymarked. Take your swimming costumes and a picnic!

Here’s more information to make the most of your visit to Brittany: