Prettiest and charming towns in Brittany

Last Updated on 12/09/2020 by secretmoona

I have recently visited two of Brittany’s four “departments”, the Côtes d’Armor (22) in the north and Ille et Vilaine (35) in the east, bordering on Normandy. So I wanted to share with you, some of the most beautiful towns I have visited or want to visit. Therefore, here is my top prettiest and charming medieval towns in Brittany, they all represent one of the heritage characters of Brittany (urban, maritime, castles, rural and religious)


prettiest and charming towns in Brittany

Brittany’s prettiest and charming towns

Brittany is a very diverse region both architecturally and geographically. Breton have a strong cultural identity so they have preserved most of their heritage. From the several walled cities, fishing ports and rustic buildings to medieval castles, Brittany has become a very touristic region where culture and sea are on top of the agenda.

Auray, Morbihan

View of port of Saint-Goustan - Auray Brittany one of the most charming towns in Brittany
Picturesque port of Saint-Goustan

Auray is one of these quaint towns you will love at first sight. From its historic half-timbered and stone houses to its cobbled streets and the picturesque port of Saint-Goustan, Auray has all the ingredients of a charming town! The port town that used to be an important harbor is now a lovely place with restaurants, bars, and arty boutiques. Definitely worth a visit.

Bécherel, Ille-et-Vilaine

Town of Bécherel is one of the most charming towns in Brittany
Entrance to a bookstore…only in Bécherel

Situated between Rennes and Saint Malo, Bécherel is France’s first book town and third in Europe after Hay-on-Wye (Wales) and Redu (Belgium). With more than 15 bookshops, a monthly open-air book market and a popular Fête du Livre every year, the little town is the place of reference for book lovers of all age and gender. As well as being a culture/literature town, the village is also picturesquely beautiful.

Dinan, Côtes d’Armor

Dinan, one of the most charming towns in Brittany
A winding street in Dinan

Dinan is the definition of the quaint beautiful Breton town. The charming little town, full of medieval history with a well preserved 13th-century castle and ramparts, is like a jewel. Walking through the narrow cobbled streets, you see how the locals care about and cherish their town. In my opinion, Dinan is the prettiest town in Brittany. A must see!

Fougères, Ille-et-Vilaine

Another pretty and charming town is the little town of Fougères at the border of Normandy with a lovely medieval quarter. It is a must-see for its fairytale-like château. As a Ville d’Art et d’Histoire (town of Art and History) it offers lots of things to see and discover.

Saint-Malo, Ille-et-Vilaine

the walled town of St Malo is one of the most charming towns in Brittany
The walled town of St Malo

The historic walled seaside town of Saint-Malo should be in any Brittany itinerary. With its historic town centre, Fort National, castle, delicious seafood, beaches and galettes, Saint-Malo is an inevitable and unmissable place.

Vannes, Morbihan

Pretty and charming town of Vannes

Located in Morbihan, southern coast of Brittany, Vannes is a pretty city that has retained its medieval features. Formally built on a fortified Roman site, the town has beautiful wood beamed houses and the magnificent Cathédrale de St Pierre. The quaint streets are full of nice shops, boutiques, and restaurants where you can enjoy the taste of Brittany and sample the delicious crepes, local cheeses, and oysters.

Locronan, Finistère

Locronan is listed in our list of the most beautiful villages in Brittany for one reason: its beauty. I mean this photo speaks for itself, right? This picturesque village has managed to preserve its heritage, including its granite Renaissance homes, old church and well located in the pedestrian historic centre. The pleasantly preserved architecture testify to the rich past of the town which reached its apogee thanks to Admirably well preserved, they testify to the rich past. 

Vitré, Ille-et-Vilaine

Half-Timbered House in Vitre
Half-Timbered House in Vitre – @David Cuningham

Vitré’s charm doesn’t stop to its grand high-rise half-timbered houses, stones cottages and quaint streets and fairytale-like castle. It offers also a place where you can enjoy nature. The several lakes offer great walking spots as well as places for bathing and enjoying water sports. Also with Mme de Sévigné at the town’s most famous former resident, you are sure to enjoy a bit of literature as well.

Moncontour, Côtes d’Armor

Charming Moncontour @Brittany Tourism

Moncontour is a small village surrounded by imposing ramparts. The narrow streets, impressive mansions and buildings make it  a great place for strolling. The village made its name in the production and trading of fabric but now it is known as a tourist spot, especially in summer. The village hosts a medieval festival with street entertainments every odd year.

Have you visited any of these beautiful and charming villages and towns? Which one is your favorite? I am curious to know.

Editor’s note: This post was originally posted in October 2017 and has now been updated

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Hi there! I'm Mayi. Welcome to my blog SecretMoona! I hope to share with you the hidden secret of places I visit.

37 thoughts on “Prettiest and charming towns in Brittany

  1. Awesome! My family is originally from Brittany. I love this region. I was always going on holidays near St Malo (Cancale, famous for the oysters) and near Vannes (Arradon, on the coast, with many islands nearby). I loved reading your article about some of our lovely villages – and I also particularly loved the photos 🙂

    1. Merci Eloïse! I fell in love with Brittany. I’m off to Vannes and St Gildas in December. Maybe I will have time to check out Arradon?

    2. One of those places i think is on most people’s places to visit list as every photo you see is just so inviting for that next holiday break and so easy to get to. 4holidays has a great selection of accommodation for all budgets and you can check reviews before booking. Travel insurance also available on-line for all UK and EU residents.

  2. This looks like a fairytale town… Sometimes I think after travelling so much I have seen a lot of places and then blogs like this reminds me there’s still a huge world waiting our there

    1. Thanks for reading. There are so much places to see in France, Brittany is one of them. The thing I like the most about it is the difference between the north and south.

  3. Brittany looks like such a beautiful area, with so many charming houses and alleyways. I loved your photos – they definitely made me want to go check it out!

  4. These are beautiful! I would love to go back to Brittany. I’ve been a couple of times but just for short periods on family vacations in certain places. I’ll definitely be returning and going here! Dinan looks gorgeous.

  5. All of these towns look so pretty! I’m taking a trip to France next year so I’ll have to see if I can visit Brittany while I’m there!

  6. Those towns are very charming, I especially like the one with first book shop, cause I’m a book nerd. I’m definitely adding Brittany to the places that I have to visit in France

    1. Thanks. Bécherel is a lovely town. They have all sorts of books: classics to foreign books. You will like it.

  7. Brittany is such a beautiful region of France! I travelled there with my parents as a teenager twice but would love to visit again! I remember that I loved Vannes!

  8. Beautiful! I spent a few summers living in Brittany (near Lorient) and have managed to visit most of these places – so beautiful! I especially fell in love with Auray when I was there, so pretty.

  9. Goodness what a ridiculously pretty (and quaint) area. I love the look of all of these villages, especially Vannes – it’s really cool the way the pain the wood on those tudor-esque buildings. I have never seen that before, but I love the look of it. Back in the UK, those wooden beams are always just black.

    As always, your posts give me wanderlust.

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