Rising from the sea, the gargantuan rose tinted granite boulders stand defiant against the fury of the elements. Shaped through the ages and formed deep within the Earth, the boulders dwarf the rest of the landscape. For millennia, the North Atlantic has battered the coast with everything it has, but the granite has not budged. Nor will it over the next few millennia.
In the mid-spring sunshine, the Atlantic is more sleeping kitten than roaring lion… The coast is still and beyond the gentle lapping of the waves on the rocks, the sea is silent. The sun shimmers in brilliance across the placid ocean. Throughout the bay further stacks and columns of granite of climb out of the sea, like elephants rising from a lake. They form scattered islets and islands, creating a range of narrow and treacherous channels for the fisherman to skilfully navigate through.
Whilst the sea is calm and peaceful this week, the array of lighthouses that illuminate the multitude of rocks and reefs every night, serve a reminder that the sea truly can be a wild and unforgiving place and this stretch of coast in particular has seen more than its fair share of shipwrecks.
Inland, the granite continues to dominate, protruding from the earth, standing tall and casting a shadow on the sweet smelling gorse below. Throughout the area, the boulders look as if they have been thrown randomly into the landscape, yet strangely they fit in. The soft grasses and gorse bushes of the cliff tops quickly give way towering pine forests and still the granite… always the granite.
We are staying a stones throw from the sea just outside of the ‘tres belle’ village of Ploumanach. The village has a pretty beachfront as well as a working, but picturesque breton harbour. With the April sunshine on my back, the turquoise waters are inviting me to swim… However, with water temperatures in this area still averaging an icy 9 degrees celsius, a paddle up to my knees will have to suffice!
The ‘Sentier des Douaniers’ footpath from Perros-Guirrec is un-missable. Winding its way around the coast, each and every headland gives way to one even more spectacular and dramatic than the last. Where Perros-Guirrec itself has been lost to the tourists, Ploumanach retains its Breton character and a walk around the town and ‘crepe au nutella’ is an absolute must.
As the day goes on, the rose tint on the granite slowly changes colour. At the start of the day, it’s a soft colour… gearing up for the day ahead. By midday the granite has an orange accent to it as the heat starts to rise. But it’s in the evening when the granite is at it’s most magical. The granite appears to glow in a warm pink rose tone. Granite, so often considered a cold and dark stone, seldom appears warm, but on the Pink Granite Coast, that is exactly how it comes across. The rock has absorbed the heat of the day and now glows against the inky tones of the sky and azure depths of the sea.
The world is full of spectacular coastlines and beautiful towns and villages. Yet sometimes it is not the most exotic or distant places that produce the most beautiful locations. Sometimes, the coastline that inspires you the most is on your very doorstep. We’ve been visiting Brittany for years now and along with Cornwall, this truly is the the most beautiful coastline we’ve seen anywhere.