Go Back  Fodor's Travel Talk Forums > Destinations > Europe
Reload this Page >

Looking for charming lodging in Morbihan (Locqmariaquer to Concarneau)

Looking for charming lodging in Morbihan (Locqmariaquer to Concarneau)

Old Sep 26th, 2010, 04:08 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 104
Looking for charming lodging in Morbihan (Locqmariaquer to Concarneau)

I've been following every trail I can and am turning up very little in the way of charming, affordable lodging in an interesting setting that's within a short drive of the oyster areas along the southern coast of Brittany.

We found scores of such offerings for the Loire Valley part of our trip, but I'm coming up empty for the three or four days in this area.

Many of the towns and areas right on the coast seem to have an abundance of schlock.

My wife and I look for places that are older, and either in an older part of a small to medium town or in an attractive natural setting. We don't need to be right on the coast, since we'll have a car. Somewhere within about 15km is fine, a bit further if the place is really nice. Rooms can be small, but need character, and, of course clean and relatively quiet.

Our budget is 100-125 euros per night. We occassionally go to 150 for an exceptional place.

I'd really love some suggestiions.

Thanks!
pconte is offline  
Old Sep 26th, 2010, 04:45 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 2,552
Can I ask what websites you've been checking? This is not an unreasonable request so I'm surprised you're having difficulty finding something to fit your criteria. You didn't say in what month you are coming and that can figure into the price. You also haven't said how long you are staying but I bet you could find a nice weekly rental in a charming small home or older type building that would be less than your planned nightly hotel expenditure.

I'm not an accommodation expert but I would suggest checking out these websites, if you haven't already. Go to www.homelidays.com and www.abritel.com. These websites offer B&B's and weekly rentals and are generally the only 2 websites I ever need to use to find a nice B&B or weekly rental.

The area around the Gulf of Morbihan is one of my favorite regions in France and I just returned from a visit in July, having stayed in Carnac. I wrote a trip report about all the places nearby. Let me know if you'd like the weblink to the report or if you need more help with your planning.

You can also try the gîtes de charme website.

http://www.gites-de-france.com/gites...uk/rural_gites

You might also try the Logis website. Here is the link for that.

http://www.logishotels.com/en/map-search.html

In just a few seconds of scanning that website I found a place in Plouharnel (next to Carnac) that seems like it might fit your criteria. Here is the link.

http://www.lesajoncsdor.com/

You should also check the tourist office websites for any town in this region. They generally list local accommodation and will help you locate a place free of charge. Just google names of towns in the region and you'll find their websites, which often have English versions.
FrenchMystiqueTours is offline  
Old Sep 26th, 2010, 04:47 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 2,552
Correction, you did say you were coming for three or four days.
FrenchMystiqueTours is offline  
Old Sep 26th, 2010, 05:25 PM
  #4  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 104
Hi FMT!

Thanks for the tips. I was about 2/3 of the way through your trip report when my wife hollered that you'd replied.

We're actually planning 4 mights in Brittany, with two nights in the southern area and two around Dinan.

So, you can see we're not looking for a week rental.

I did use Logis, Google, Karen Brown, LocMariaquer "hotel central", Trip Advisor and a variety of others. Les Ajoncs d'Or was unavailable (drat!)

Didn't use "gites" because of short-term rental.

Arbitrel turned up a couple Chambre d'hôtes I'll look into.

If you have any specific towns you especially like (or would avoid), let me know.

I _really_ appreciate your being so helpful!

-- Paul
pconte is offline  
Old Sep 26th, 2010, 05:41 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 2,552
Hi Paul. When are you coming? I'll be busy for a couple of days but I'll poke around and see if I can come up with anything for you. I can't think of any towns you should avoid in that area. Most places in that region are all small towns so there's not much urban/commercial blight to hurt the eyes. Cute little towns and hamlets abound and I think your simple criteria of staying anywhere within 10-15km from the coast should work good for you. As I said, your request is reasonable so I'm sure there is something out there for you. It just needs to be uncovered.
FrenchMystiqueTours is offline  
Old Sep 26th, 2010, 05:53 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 2,552
Here are a couple more links (perhaps you've tried them already). They both show the same listings but the formatting is different so you can use the one you prefer.

http://www.pour-les-vacances.com/mor...bres-hotes.php

http://www.chambresdhotes.org/Chambr...mbres_D_Hotes/
FrenchMystiqueTours is offline  
Old Sep 26th, 2010, 06:06 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 41,962
http://www.kerdelan.com/infos.html

this is located outside of AURAY (10k)
it's a white villa built on the gulf of
Morbihan seashore
cigalechanta is offline  
Old Sep 26th, 2010, 06:17 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 41,962
http://www.leshortensias.info/

this one is southwest of Vannes
cigalechanta is offline  
Old Sep 26th, 2010, 06:44 PM
  #9  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 104
I found some possibilities on these lists and sent inquiries for availability.

http://www.ar-couette.com/

http://www.lamaisondeflore.com/

Thanks again so much!!!
pconte is offline  
Old Sep 26th, 2010, 10:13 PM
  #10  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 104
cigalechanta

Thanks for the suggestions. Both places look like good possibilities.

Unfortunately, the Fax number for Kerdelan received am "invalid number" response when I tried to Fax a request.

I've had a slew of problems with sending Faxes (no answer, invalid response, etc.) Can't figure out why places that have these bizarrely designed Web sites don't have e-mail or on-line reservations.

But still -- thanks for the help.
pconte is offline  
Old Sep 27th, 2010, 06:05 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 2,552
The two places you sent requests to look like they'd be exactly what you are looking for. I know the areas where they are located and I'm sure you would like it right around the gulf. If you've read my trip report it is full of info and photos of the towns and attractions right around these places. Hope one of them works out for you. Let us know how you make out.
FrenchMystiqueTours is offline  
Old Sep 27th, 2010, 01:15 PM
  #12  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 104
We settled on La Maison Flore, exchanged e-mails with the proprietor, and have sent her our deposit information. Just waiting for final confirmation.

FMT -- Your trip report is _great_.

I created a PDF document from it. If you want a copy, go to:
http://jwneugene.org/tmp/BrittanyVac...OfMorbihan.pdf .

Please let me know after you have a copy or don't want one, so I can remove it.
pconte is offline  
Old Sep 27th, 2010, 09:12 PM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 2,552
Hi pconte - That was really nice of you. I'm leaving in just a few minutes to go away until late Wednesday night but when I return I will get back to you and let you know if I need the document. Thanks so much for thinking of that and let me know if I can help you with anything else in your trip planning. Congratulations on finding a place too!
FrenchMystiqueTours is offline  
Old Sep 27th, 2010, 09:49 PM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 17,793
Maybe too late, but we stayed four nights at the Hotel Roz Aven in Pont-Aven last month, and enjoyed it immensely. Trip report: http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...-movements.cfm
Gardyloo is offline  
Old Sep 28th, 2010, 09:18 AM
  #15  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 104
Gardyloo ...

Really enjoyed your trip report and photos. I think I'll just photoshop my wife and me in the one of you in the fields looking out to Mont St. Michel. <g>

We're confirmed at La Maison Flore near Carnac, but thanks for the excellent tips. I was heartbroken this morning to learn that Chez Jacky is closed October to Easter, but will compensate by another couple dozen oysters.

If you have an inclination, I'd love any additional tips related to oysters -- searching out as many as possible of the 13 AOC oyster regions in Brittany was the initial motivation for adding Brittany to our adventure. I have a collection of tasting notes for each of the regions. BTW, I'm talking "Belons" ("natives") only. I can get my fill of creuses (Crassostrea gigas) here in the Pacific Northwest -- they're no match for Ostrea edulis, or even the Crassostrea virginica from the Chesapeake Bay, near where I grew up.

Shifting to Dinan and area ... After Carnac, we're staying in Dinan for a Friday and Saturday night at La Challonge Hotel
http://www.hotel-dinan.fr/
We have a double room on the ramparts, overlooking the garden. Will report after our stay.

Judging from how full the hotels in Cancale and around Mont St. Michel were when I searched for lodging, we expect a lot of folks will be there for the weekend. The Route de Rhum sailing race heads out from Cancale that weekend, too.

So, what time of day did you set out for your frustrating attempt to visit Mont St. Michel? I'm trying to judge whether we can go _real_ early and beat the crowd.

Re Cancale ... you said something like "famous for oysters, but no more." Could you fill me in. We may look for an alternative further west, like AOC's La Rivière de Tréguier ("round, regular shell encloses a firm flesh with a taste of iodine. Slightly vegetable flavor.") or La Paimpol ("Salty with flavor of the sea. Fatty without being too rich.") <g>

Cheers!
pconte is offline  
Old Sep 28th, 2010, 09:22 AM
  #16  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 104
BTW, here is a link to my "work in progress" map for our trip.

Click the "plate of oysters" icons to read tasting notes.

http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?ie=UT...916382&t=h&z=8
pconte is offline  
Old Sep 28th, 2010, 01:14 PM
  #17  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 17,793
Re Mont St. Michel, we left Dinan around 10 and got into the traffic queue around an hour later. The queue into the car park was around 1 1/2 miles long; but judging from the number of cars in the car park, and the pace at which they were entering when we arrived, I'd have to guess that people had been arriving at/before 8. That's not counting the many campers and caravans that had obviously spent the night.

Mind you, this was during the last week before school started, so one should assume that we were there on the peak of peaks.

Re oysters, we can't claim to be great connoisseurs; the flat Belon oysters were quite flavorful, but the ones we had (I think size No. 2 or 3) were quite small compared to the Pacific oysters served alongside (and, to be brutally frank, we preferred the taste of the Pacific oysters to the Belon ones, but that might stem from us coming from Seattle, where we get them all the time.) Not to say the Belons aren't very good, but a bit different.

This photo - http://gardyloo.us/20100829_59a.jpg - shows the price differential for the various Belon sizes that applied on our visit; presumably this fluctuates over time.

Re Cancale - I dunno; it was totally packed with tourists when we were there; it just didn't hit a vibe. We enjoyed much more the other side of the Rance estuary: Dinard, Saint-Lunaire, etc., but we really didn't spend a lot of time in any of them. Weather was poopy too.
Gardyloo is offline  
Old Sep 28th, 2010, 01:40 PM
  #18  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 104
Thanks for the additional info.

We may go to Dinard, depending on how many folks are around for the Route de Rhum.

BTW, my wife says I need to get control of my watching "oyster porn", such as this site:
http://www.saintkerber.com/uk/les-huitres.php
Note the "Pied de Cheval", which I am definitely going to seek out.

Belon's are expensive, but the prices in your photo are a lot better then the 25 UK pounds for 1/2 dozen "natives" (Nbr 1's, if I recall) they were asking in London.

Belons also have a reputation as an "oyster for experienced oyster eaters"; someone called eating Belons the "graduate school" of oysters, but to me they just plain taste delicious.

Of the different oysters I've tasted, I'd say Bluff Oysters (Tiostrea chilensis) of New Zealand merit the top slot, but they can be too "metallic" for some folks' taste.

BTW, we're practically neighbors, as we live down in Eugene.
pconte is offline  
Old Sep 29th, 2010, 03:19 PM
  #19  
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 2,552
pconte - I am loving reading about your devotion to oysters. My wife is crazy about them but but hasn't taken her obsession as far as you have (she's not watching oyster porn yet). I see your vacation is more about culinary attractions rather than historical or touristic ones. Afraid I won't be much help other than to say I too have heard that Cancale is renowned for its oysters. As for the price of oysters, obviously that can depend. Most restaurants/take-away places charge between .50€ and 2€ per oyster but I suppose something special might be a bit more.

You still haven't said when you are coming but I know you are going to Mont Saint Michel and are worried about crowds. I was just there today and yesterday and also 2 weeks ago and though there are still plenty of crowds it is nothing like the summer season so there is room to breathe. Even if you are there in the afternoon (though weekends may be a bit more crowded). Right now, there are no queues at all for parking and you can can just drive up to the lot and park.

I don't think I'll need that PDF report since I've got a copy already on my hard drive but thank you for offering. Best of luck on your oyster quest!
FrenchMystiqueTours is offline  
Old Sep 29th, 2010, 07:32 PM
  #20  
DKA
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 20
FMT, That report is an eye-opener. I'll go through it in detail with my Michelin map. We'll be in Morbihan briefly in a couple of weeks. The info on Mont St. Michel is helpful, too.
DKA is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

FODOR'S VIDEO