Dreaming of the coast of France and colorful Bretagne this Waterlogue Wednesday.
I have decided to quit hoarding so many photos and share more images each Waterlogue Wednesday.
Today’s first hydrangea burst comes from the garden of L’Orangerie Lanniron on the River Odet. This is a fabulous place! I am way overdue to do a whole post on it. Today’s “blue two” are from the darling town of Pont-Aven in Bretagne. I had been to Pont-Aven before, but I told R that we needed to return because I felt there was much more to explore. It was a misty and, at times, rainy afternoon, but the art galleries and vibrant colors brightened our time. The town sits on a port and has water running right through the center of it. Behind many of the shops lies a maze of bridges where hanging flower boxes invite visitors to discover the next gallery, boutique, or crêperie. No visit to Bretagne is complete without a stop in Pont-Aven.
Today’s Waterlogue is from an image not from Provence, but from the western region of Bretagne. I still dream of seeing fields and fields of lavender one of these summers in France, but this particular garden was just as satisfying with its impressive display of both lavender and hydrangeas. The bumble bees were having a heyday! We had picked up a brochure of the region somewhere along the highway and so I was directing us based on what looked most interesting… and colorful. Although this is only a small zoomed-in image of the incredible garden, I prefer to share this simple snapshot of so many consider quintessential French summertime.
Many years ago, my adopted French family, who live in Marseille, invited me to their second home in Bretagne, in western France. I had never been, and since I never pass up the opportunity to either see a new place or see this family that has been so gracious and welcoming to me over the years, I jumped at the chance.
Their home is in Quimperlé, not directly on the beach, but close enough to taste that intoxicating sea air that reminds you you’re close to the coast. It was on this trip that I discovered this gorgeous region of France and subsequently inspired me to make plans to camp there at my next chance. With the company of an expert camper European, we set off from hot and polluted Paris and headed west toward bluer (and damper) landscapes. Having been to enchanting Mont St. Michel before, we skipped it this trip, only just seeing its tiny silhouette in the distance out the right side of the car. Our destination (if only the first one) was clear: St. Malo awaited us.
Brittany and Normandy being so critically important in WWII, it is not uncommon to come across historic sites and markers in both regions. However, we were surprised when our not so advanced search for a campsite led us to one perched atop a German bunker from the War. We enjoyed a relaxed couple of days there, a fascinating tour of the bunker itself, and discovering (albeit a little late) the extraordinary walled city of St. Malo, very reminiscent of Mont St. Michel in many ways. Typical French charm oozes from this place not without tourists due to its historical significance and beauty.
From St. Malo we headed further west, toward one of the most western points in the region at the charming seaside town of Camaret-sur-Mer. From there, we headed further down and a bit more east to Concarneau, which was a favorite as well. We drove largely without aim, using only hints from locals and brochures picked up at tourist offices. We made no reservations in advance and had no problem getting a camping plot. (Note: For a long-term stay, it may not have been so easy.)
This region is best done, in my opinion, with a couple of nights in each spot. Because of the geography and topography, it’s fairly easy to get from one new town to another – and even one coast to another – within just a couple of hours. What is typically Breton is indeed pervasive throughout – fishing culture, cider and crêpes, colorful shutters and façades, thatched roofs, hydrangeas galore, and historically significant spots perfect for visits when you’re looking for something beyond lounging around at the beach or playing at the campsite. Make no mistake, though, even in summer (I was there in late July), this is a damp region and is not a place to go to get a tan. Take sweaters and rain jackets, but more importantly grab your camera and just go.
Great news, Instacanv.as is having a sale!
Go to: http://instacanv.as/fallingoffbicycles/, select the photo and product you desire, and insert code ICC20PTCC at checkout.
I took this photo last week in Camaret-sur-Mer, Bretagne.
Falling Off Bicycles photograph on matte wrapped canvas
Taken in Brittany, France
I took this in the summer during a trip to Bretagne, France. Summers in Brittany mean hydrangeas everywhere! I couldn’t get enough shots of them! This particular one is a cottage I came across during a walk.
Looks great on an easel or hanging on a wall.
Size: 8×10 wrapped canvas with 3/4″ deep frame
Comes with tooth hook for easy hanging
Sent this postcard to a special someone in 2007 who just rediscovered it the other day… subconscious inspiration or a sign?