- Quimper, (29 Finistère, Brittany) hosts the region’s annual Celtic Festival (Festival de Cornouaille) 23 – 28 July 2019
- Pont-Aven (29 Finistère, Brittany) holds an annual Fête des Fleurs d’Ajoncs (festival of gorse flowers) at the beginning of August – see www.fetedesfleursdajonc.bzh/
This part of France feels and sounds quite different from other regions of the country – think Cornwall with many of the same traditions – fishing, music, language, costumes…. Get used to the Breton language and road signs – e.g. Quimper becomes Kemper!
Not only is Quimper the administrative capital of the Finistère department, it is also generally regarded as the cultural heart of Brittany. The town is known for its cathedral, atmospheric old quarter and museums but most of all for its annual festival celebrating Breton culture…..Dedicated to the sheer richness and diversity of Breton culture, the Festival de Cornouaille is a cultural cornucopia, and even though it is now nearly ninety years old, this festival is still as youthful as ever. Concerts, all kinds of entertainment, competitions to determine the best bagadoù, or bagpipe players, bell-ringers and dancers…and the Great Sunday Parade where everyone dresses in traditional costume. That’s the Festival de Cornouaille. For one week every summer, Quimper’s historic town centre vibrates to the Celtic rhythm, much to the delight of some 250,000 visitors. And, since 1923, the festival has never been a disappointment. Back then, the gorgeous girls of Concarneau, Quimper and Pont-Aven paraded proudly in traditional Breton costumes. Today, the festival has become a horn of plenty into which the likes of Joan Baez, Césaria Évora and Simple Minds pour their music. Simply mind blowing! www.brittanytourism.com
- Pont-Aven (29 Finistère, Brittany) was nominated as one of France’s favourite villages in 2020 by French TV progamme Le Village Préféré des Français on France TV3