Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Saints Shore Way - cliffs of Trédrez

I've been working this week on the Saints Shore Way, a project in conjunction with the Pays de Morlaix. This picks up the idea of the Saints Way walking trail in Cornwall and follows a coastal route from Roscoff to Lannion, part of the shore where the Celtic monks and their followers landed. The themes of the guidebook will relate to the age of saints - particularly the early origins of Brittany and the Breton language, as well as economic connections with Great Britain and historical conflicts.
The GR34 coastal path in Brittany is based on what was originally a route for military defence and smuggler-watching, with many guard-houses and lookout towers remaining along the way. The cliffs of Trédrez where I walked yesterday offer a wilder stretch of heather-clad slopes above the sea in the bay of St-Michel-en-Grève, with views across to Grand Rocher and Locquirec. The path snakes along midway between the summits and the water before arrival in Locquemeau.
This area of the Trégor is one of the earliest districts of Brittany, based on the bishopric of Tréguier. Unfortunately carved up by the French at the Revolution, it now straddles the departments of Finistère and Cotes d'Armor. Both the coast and the interior are exceptionally worthy of exploration.

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