Cancale – the capital of the oysters

Sladjana Perkovic | Live the World

November 23, 2022

Brittany is an astonishing gourmand French region where every city has it own local specialty, like Kouign-Amman from Douarnenez or Chouchen from Lannion. In the same way, Cancale, a picturesque fishing port, is famous for – its oysters. It was not for nothing that this town in the northwest France was called “the capital of the oysters”. This is a place where you can taste very fresh oysters in the restaurants but also buy them directly from producers at the Marché aux huitres (oysters market). Cancale is a perfect place where you can simply enjoy life.

Small fishing port

Not far away from the magnificent Mont Saint Michel, one of France’s most recognizable landmarks on the list of World Heritage Sites and Saint Malo, a historic walled port city, Cancale is a small fishing port popular with visitors. Many tourists are drawn here by its reputation as the “oyster capital”, but not only. If you go for a walk in the little streets around the port la Houle you can fill the atmosphere of old Cancale. For centuries this port was cut off from the rest of the world and in 1831 it was joined to the town by a simple path. Today, you can see real bisquine, the traditional local fishing boat going out on fishing trips just like in the old days.

Old customs officer’s path

In Cancale you can visit St Méen church named after the Welsh saint who settled here in the 6th century. Inside the church is the Musée des Arts et Traditions Populaires (Museum of Popular Arts and Traditions), which recounts the history of the town. The town’s main festival, Les Reposoirs, which celebrates the Virgin Mary, the protector of sailors, takes place every 15th August. Cancale has plenty to offer to walkers as the GR34 old customs officer’s path runs along the coast, whether you want to head north to the wild headland of the Pointe de Grouin or west along the Baie de St Michel.

What to do in Cancale?

In Cancale - the capital of the oysters you should of course visit the farm Marine (la Ferme Marine), an oyster farm and a museum in the Saint Kerber park. During your guided tour of the farm you can discover all the secrets of the oysters, but also you can see the farmers at work and the breathtaking exhibition of seashells. There is also a shop where you can get some very nice shell-inspired jewelry. This oyster farm is open every day from July to mid-September. If you want to treat yourself with fresh and delicious seafood, don't miss "Coté Mer", the restaurant away from the city center and the crowd in a beautiful house overlooking the bay of Cancale. If time permits, you can even enjoy an exceptional view of the bay of Cancale with Saint Michael’s Mount in the background. Looking for the place to sleep in Cancale? The hotel “Manoir des douets fleuris” is a nice and peaceful place, with a beautiful and big garden. This hotel has an air of countryside, but it is located near the beaches of the Emerald Coast and only 15 minutes drive from the city of Saint-Malo.

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