the granit pink coast
Seeing life in pink in Brittany
We are all attached to a place.
For me, it is the pink granite coast. A vast field of (pink) rock running along the Côtes d’Armor to Perros-Guirec.
Very personally, I consider the pink granite coast to be the jewel of Brittany (yes, this is totally subjective). But let me tell you why!
Perros-Guirec is a small seaside resort nestled in the heart of the Côtes d’Armor and is full of beauty. Known for its pink granite chaos (300 million years old), and its protected natural sites, Perros-Guirec is a town of breathtaking charm. One of its districts, Ploumanac’h, was even elected “Favorite Village of the French” in 2015, it is a must!
What to do in Perros-Guirec?
1. Trestraou beach
Trestraou beach is surely the most popular beach in Perros-Guirec. With its 1.4km of fine sand, this seaside beach will allow you to relax.
Many restaurants line the beach to suit all budgets. You will find hotels, SPAs, a mini-golf course, a casino and a cinema. There is also a water sports centre where you can learn to sail and a surf school.
It is also the departure point for the ferry to the 7 islands archipelago (Rouzic, Malban, Les Costans, Bono, l’Île-aux-Moines, l’Île Plate and Le Cerf), as well as to the island of Bréhat.
2. Trestrignel beach
Trestrignel beach is a little sister to Trestraou. The two beaches are separated by a rocky point but are quite similar. A little less touristy and more favoured by the locals, Trestrignel has a few restaurants and hotels. The eastern point is also an excellent vantage point for watching the sunrise.
3. Renote Island
Technically, Renote Island is in the town of Tregastel, but we’ll cheat. It is a peninsula with an incredible charm! You can walk around it in less than an hour and enjoy the different viewpoints on the pink granite coast. The Toul Drez beach is the main (and largest) beach, but there are different beaches and spots where you can rest and swim.
4. Saint-Guirec beach
This small beach has a breathtaking view of the castle of Costaéres, and its pink granite chaos. You can find restaurants, hotels, shops and ice-cream parlours in the vicinity of the beach. You can also hire a paddle or kayak and visit the coast via the sea. The access to the lighthouse of Ploumanac’h is a great bonus!
It is a little jewel, you will not be able to resist its beauty!
On the beach you will find the oratory of Saint-Guirec! It is an ancient Christian place of worship in honour of the evangelist St Guirec. The pink granite statue is said to have various virtues and legends. One of the most popular is that unmarried girls stick a pine needle in the nose of the statue of the Saint. If the needle is still stuck after the tide, then the girl will be married before the end of the year. Maybe it’s time to try something other than Tinder for you, or your still single mate?
Tips: in the summer months, finding a parking space can be a challenge. It’s best to park at the port of Ploumanac’h or in the surrounding car parks.
5. Landrellec beach
Located in the commune of Pleumeur-Bodou, this area has several beaches. You will find a small port with a pier separating two beaches. At low tide, you can enjoy fishing or walking by visiting the accessible islets (beware of the tide, it rises quickly).
You can also walk from the beach on the harbour side to the beach on the GCU side and enjoy a nice short walk.
But whether it is on the harbour side or the beach side, the Breton charm will work!
6. White and Pink beach
The “grève blanche” and the “grève rose” are two twin beaches located in Trégastel. Both beaches are quite popular during the summer. There is a water sports centre where you can learn different water sports and also rent water sports equipment.
Your only choice will be the question, “What colour do I want my sand to be?
7. Curées beach
La grève des curés is a small beach next to the previous ones. You can feel sheltered between the rocks. It is a very popular beach with the locals as it is often sheltered from the wind.
8. Sentier des douaniers
Time: 1 day
This is a must-see walk if you are going to Perros-Guirec. The customs path is part of the GR34 (1 800 km). You will be able to appreciate the pink granite coast in all its splendour. It is possible to walk part of the way from Perros-Guirec to Tregastel in one day. For an even more incredible view, go to the sunrise on the Ranolien coast, and the sunset on the Men Ruz lighthouse (Saint Guirec).
9. Ploumanac'h lighthouse
Located on the customs path, it is one of the main attractions (no pun intended) of Perros-Guirec and the pink granite coast. The lighthouse of Ploumanac’h named Maen Ruz means “red stone” in Breton and this is because of the pink granite used for its construction. The first building was built in 1860 but destroyed by the Germans during the Second World War, it was rebuilt in 1946.
It is accessible by taking a small path through the pink granite chaos.
It is one of my favourite places, but it is also popular with tourists and locals, and in the high season you will see many people.
10. Costaeres castle
The neo-Medieval building is located on the island of the same name. The castle was completed in 1896 by French craftsmen for Bruno Abakanowicz. He had bought the island from a Perrosian who grew potatoes on it.
The building has been extended several times, which explains its complex architecture. Moreover, it is more a large manor house than a castle in the strict sense.
It is a private residence and cannot be visited, but it is just as beautiful to see from the coast. You can also walk around the island during low tides.
11. Tour of Île Grande
Ile Grande is part of the commune of Pleumeur-Bodou. It is possible to walk around it (max 3h). You will be able to see different landscapes, and see the ornithological station! Between seas and Breton villages, you will feel immersed in this setting.
12. Traouïero valley
Take a walk along these bewitching streams, and discover its various points of interest! Lose yourself in this enchanting setting, between chestnut trees and pink granite chaos! (yes, pink rocks are everywhere!)
13. Ploumanac’h harbour
Stroll around the port of Ploumanac’h and its narrow streets. This small Breton port will tame your heart! You can start or finish the customs path, with a breathtaking view of the castle of Costaérès. A little extra? For the sunset, go to the path to discover a sumptuous spectacle!
This neighbouring town of Perros-Guirec is full of Breton houses and narrow streets that will surprise you. Its coast is also part of the pink granite coast and has many superb beaches (see above).
15. Doing water sports
There is a wide choice of sailing, canoeing, kayaking, paddling, diving, surfing, there is something for everyone! The advantage? It allows you to discover the coast in a different way! You can discover many treasures left by the sea! Meet at the sailing club in Trestraou or Trégastel. You can also rent equipment to enjoy your favourite sports in Perros-Guirec and Trégastel!
Nautic center: Perros-Guirec à Trestraou, Tregastel à la Grève Blanche
Surf school: Perros-Guirec à Trestraou,
16. Filling the belly
Brittany also has a rich culinary heritage, which is always a pleasure to taste!
How can you go to Brittany without tasting a crêpe or a galette? The best ones are at L’Abricotier or at Ty Breiz, near the marina!
A little ice cream to reward yourself after the customs path? If you arrive in Trestraou, it is at the Glacier des 7 Îles that you should go. And if you pass by Saint Guirec, run to KEO Glaces Artisanales ! Your taste buds will thank you!
Buy one of the best Kouign Aman ? Iconic Breton cake, to taste the best, go to the Boulangerie du port (Port de Perros-Guirec) or Maison Héméri !
Crêperie: Abricotier (Louannec), Ty Breiz (Perros-Guirec), Crêperie Bistrot du port (Ploumanac’h – Perros-Guirec)
Restaurants: Ker Bleu (Trestraou – Perros-Guirec), Coste Mor (Grève Saint-Guirec – Perros-Guirec), La Maison de Marie (Perros-Guirec)
Ice-cream: Glacier des 7 îles (Trestraou – Perros-Guirec), KEO Glaces Artisanales (Grève Saint Guirec – Perros-Guirec)
Kouign Aman: Boulangerie du port (Perros-Guirec), Maison Héméri (Perros-Guirec)
Have a drink: Triagoz (Tregastel)
If you are looking for a thrill during your stay, you can try a parachute jump! The skydiving centre in Lannion is really great! The view from the plane is breathtaking and the thrill of the jump is guaranteed!
I was lucky enough to do my jump just before sunset and with a beautiful blue sky! The turquoise water and pink granite rocks make for a beautiful sight.
18. Watch the Patrouille de France show
Every year the Patrouille de France offers a grandiose show on the pink granite coast. The show is made to be seen from the beach of Trestraou in Perros-Guirec. It is however possible to appreciate it from various points on the customs path.
On the programme, parachutists from the Lannion parachuting school, followed by the French patrol show. This is followed by an organised meeting of the aviators on the Trestraou promenade.
The dates change each year but the show is usually in August.
19. The 24h of Sailing
This is an annual sailing competition which takes place over 2 days in Tregastel. The event takes place in August. The programme includes entertainment, concerts, food and drink stalls, but above all teams compete for 24 hours at sea. The teams have to navigate between various buoys. Even if you don’t know much about sailing, it’s a great spectacle to see, especially at the end of the day with the sun setting!
The 50th edition will take place in 2023.
Access is free.
20. Lounging at the forum/swimmingpool
Rainy weather, but you want to enjoy the sea? Go to the Trégastel forum! It’s a seawater aquatic complex, where you can relax. Avoid drinking the cup, the water is salty 😉 A gym, a swimming pool, hammam, sauna, enough to enjoy your grey day!