– with approx. direct driving distances from La Basse Boulais.
Apart from the outstanding local area with its forests, many of which are criss-crossed with footpaths, hamlets and small villages there is much to tempt the visitor who wishes to explore a little further afield from La Basse Boulais.
Concoret (5 miles)
Château de Comper near Concoret, which houses the Centre de l’Imaginaire Arthurien where you’ll discover scenes from Arthurian legends. In summer there are exhibitions, events and themed walks. Next to the castle is a lake, underneath whose waters apparently lives the fairy Viviane in a crystal palace built by Merlin the magician. Some say Merlin was imprisoned by Viviane in a stone about a mile west of Concoret. Next to it is the Fontaine de Barenton, the fountain from where it is said rain can be summoned if you throw some of its water onto the slab in front of it.
Paimpont (7 miles)
Paimpont is an attractive little place, with a main street of stone cottages, and a good base to explore the area. It is best known for its 13th-century lakeside abbey, which as well as ancient books and religious silverware, holds summer exhibitions and concerts. Also worth a look are the 17th to 20th-century forges showing Paimpont’s industrial heritage.
Montfort-sur-Meu (14 miles)
A small market town well worth a visit. (Market on Fridays) Many interesting old buildings and The Ecomuseum of the district of Montfort. In Papegaut Tower, the Ecomuseum invites you to discover the culture of the district where history and legends are very close. Different permanent exhibitions are offered - the duck legend, the architecture of the district of Brocéliande and Montfort during the Middle Ages.
Becherel (20 miles)
Bécherel is a must for French-speaking lovers of literature. This charming medieval town is France’s equivalent of Hay-on-Wye and has a year-long events calendar. When you’ve nosed around the bookshops, take a wander through its atmospheric streets.
Dinan (25 miles)
Dinan is without doubt one of the most attractive and best preserved small towns in Brittany. With its 1.8 mile (3km)-long ramparts, half-timbered houses, attractive port and cobbled streets filled with art galleries and craft shops, it’s worth a day of anyone’s time.
Josselin (25 miles)
Josselin is a must-visit on any tour of the Breton heartlands. From its medieval castle, still lived in by members of the legendary Rohan family, to the doll museum, and from its attractive old town to canal-based fun or forest walks, there’s something to interest all members of the family.
La Gacilly (26 miles)
La Gacilly is synonymous with the late Yves Rocher who created and ran his cosmetics empire in this charming Morbihan village; it’s also renowned for its arts and crafts. When you’ve checked out the botanical garden and tried some treatments in the spa, go walking with donkeys or rent a boat.
Rennes (30 miles)
Most of old Rennes was burnt down in 1720 when a fire ravaged the city, however some authentic pockets remain; the streets around Place Ste-Anne are lined with higgledy-piggledy half-timbered houses. Place des Lices was originally used for jousting.
Combourg (30 miles)
Combourg remains closely linked to François René de Châteaubriand, the most famous of all French Romantic authors, who found his inspiration here, at the end of the 18th century, in this historic, leafy green setting. Follow in the poet’s footsteps, and enjoy the country atmosphere of Tranquille Lake, and the imposing castle. A visit here could be combined with a trip to Rennes, Dinan or Becherel.
Mont-Saint-Michel (50 miles)
The Mont-Saint-Michel is one of Europe’s most unforgettable sights. Set in the mesmerising bay where Normandy and Brittany merge, the island draws the eye from great distances. The staggering location has long inspired awe and the imagination. The story of how the mount turned into a great place of Christian pilgrimage is colourful. Aubert, bishop of the nearby hilltop town of Avranches early in the 8thcentury, claimed that the Archangel Michael himself pressured him into having a church built atop the island just out to sea.
- Questembert (60km)
- Mordelles (35km)
- Montauban-de-Bretagne - all day (15km), Broons (20km), Tinteniac (40km), Pace (40km)
- Malestroit (43km), Dinan (43km)
- Mauron (9km), Montfort-sur-Meu (21km), Ploermel (28km), Elven (58km)
- Saint-Meen-le-Grand: (5km), Josselin (39km), La Gacilly (48km), Rennes (50km)
- Plelan-le-Grand: (17km), Maure-de-Bretagne (36km)