We would like to retire to Britanny…my husband is French… I’m Irish. We live in the Rhone Alpe area and miss the sea.
Any idea of a good area where we could meet other people.
Hi Valerie, I can’t help at all as not from the area but just wanted to welcome you to the forum
We do have a few folk from Brittany so I’m sure they’ll be along soon.
I can honestly say that there are plenty of areas. The Bretons are generally very friendly and hospitable people who enjoy a wide range of indoor and outdoor activities.
The place can be quiet during the winter but it literally bursts into life between March and October and there is almost too much to see and do. We also have that glorious coastline which can be enjoyed at any time if the year. Wherever you locate to would almost certainly be within an hour of the beach.
There are numerous quaint villages to complement the larger towns though of course this is not unique to Brittany. The infrastructure is well developed pretty much throughout and medical and commercial services are abundant although they can be patchy dependant upon area.
Property prices climb the nearer you get to the coast. There used to be a few unfashionable coastal towns where bargains could be had but with the influx of French and foreign residents these are few and far between.
We live in central Brittany about an hour from both the north and south coasts - so maybe not your perfect location, but we love it here. I must echo what Damian has said - especially the friendliness of the Bretons. This is a very laid back culture - maybe a touch of the Irish!
In terms of the coasts, I prefer the north. It’s maybe not quite so good in weather terms - but it is astonishingly beautiful, and generally a bit quieter (in terms of tourists) than the south coast.
Again as Damian says, Brittany is packed with lovely towns and villages - and many of the bigger places (like Rennes, Vannes, Dinan and Quimper) have beautifully preserved medieval and 16th-19th century areas. Brest and Lorient were heavily bombed in the war, but are still attractive in their own way.
Do let us know a bit more about what you’re looking for and we’ll try to advise more.
Thank you all so much for taking the time to reply. We shall visit a few places on the north coast maybe around Paimpol and also other areas to get the feel of the place. I like the Cote D’Armor area but maybe a bit expensive… Maybe also around Lannion. I’m sure we will enjoy all this searching and it’s nice to know that the Bretons are so friendly.
I wouldn’t necessarily be put off by property prices in the Cote d’Armor area Valerie.
I work as an estate agent so I do have (or certainly should have) some broad knowledge.
Brittany can be very patchy with traditionally sort after and ‘fashionable’ enclaves being considerably more expensive than nearby neighbours. Examples would be Perros Gueric on the north coast and Carnac/Trinite on the south.
Nationwide statistics indicate that property is more expensive in the south in general terms.
Found an old house in Paimpol. Looking forward to the move in the summer.
I’m sure you’ll enjoy your new home in Paimpol which is yet another place we need to visit. An early welcome to Brittany from us.
Thank you. Just pop in anytime from Sept.
That is a kind offer Val but don’t expect me anytime soon as we’ve been living in Brittany for over a decade now and haven’t yet made it to Paimpol. We have visited Perros Guirec though and were very impressed.
The last time my wife went to Paimpol she came back with a whole sack of beans (literally - they’re famous - Coco de Paimpol - so much so that the neighbours wanted to share them, and I escaped living on beans for weeks).
Will be moving in during Sept. I’ll remember to search out the beans. Good to hear from you.