Subject: Re: Brittany/Normandy
Hi Barb

While in Brittany - and... if you have time, why not take the ferry from Carnac to Belle Ile en Mer? -- It's 1/2 hr tiny ferry ride. (take your car - it's cheaper than renting one on the island.) It's a flat island and is a throwback to years gone by. Sara Bernhardt spent summers there and Monet painted his Les Rochers from a bluff that overlooks crashing ocean waves against huge boulders (This painting hangs in the Mueée D'Orsay) -- We spent 4 days there and loved every minute of wandering in a lost era. (We were there in Oct; I imagine that it is overrun in the summer) If you should decide, let me know - I have a B&B (Les Amis d'Annick - that's in Port Halen- walkable from Le Palais) It's terrific! (Many bikers are there; bikes can be rented at Le Palais where the ferry docks) Also, there are over 100 miles of walking paths - most being corniche walks that follow the water and beaches. It's a delightful digression.

Also, don't forget Pont-Aven. It's where Gaugin school first started. The little village is lovely but all of Gaugin's works are elsewhere in the world. There is, however, one worth a detour site close to town. It's the small Trémalo Chapel which houses a wooden cross that Gaugin used as his model for his Yellow Christ which hangs in the Musée D'Orsay.

One other digression in Brittany: West of Les Pins in a tiny hamlet of Kermeria, there is a 12thC chapel that has famous frescos along one wall just under the wooden ceiling -- this the dance of the dead was painted after the plague. It's fascinating! The key keeper is one of the townspeople - but she was happy to let us in to see this masterpiece. (If you like interesting, old art with a twist, this is for you!)

If you remain in Normandy, however, you might want to stop for a little while at the fishing village of Honfleur - west of Rouen. It's very quaint (also touristy on weekends and in the summer), but it's very charming.

Whatever you do, have a great trip! Susie Newton, MA