"A mediaevel Town on the River Rance" Top 5 Page for this destination Dinan by ranger49
Dinan Travel Guide: 64 reviews and 233 photos
I love small medieval towns with centuries old timbered buidings, ramparts overlooking a river and plenty of cafes . All of these are to be found in Dinan and it is one of my favourite places to make a stop in France.
Located in Cotes d'Armor, close to several cross channel ferry ports, it is a good place for a comfort stop enroute to a holday home, and for that last bit of shopping before heading for home.
Over the years we have spent many holidays within less than an hours drive of the town and have made return days visits on all of them.
The photos you will see on this page were taken over more than 20 years on a variety of cameras so reflect not only changing technology but changing seasons and weather, too.
Our visits usually take place in spring and early summer and occasional early autumn.
Dinan, was founded by Celtic monks who built the Abbey there in the 9th Century. Its advantageous position on a naviagable river led to the building of a fortress and developments that brought trade and prosperity.
In 1065,the year before William the Conqueror led the invasion of Grande Bretagne (so called to distinguish it from Bretagne and nothing to do with might or power) he ruled the town from a chateau built from wood.
The ramparts were built by the Dukes of Brittany from the C12th and have survived almost intact along 3000 metres, and were listed as an Historic National Monument in 1886.
Over centuries the town grew on a plateau protected bt the ramparts and the same spirit of preservation and conservation that ensured their survival must have been at work to also preserve so many 15th and 16th century houses.
The impressive viaduct seen in this pictur was completed in 1842. Two arches damaged during the 1944 bombardment were repared; and a further feat of engineering in 1967 widened 40metres of the road, all the work taking place above ground level.
The main road - still really a lane - that leads up to the old town is a steep alley bordered by beautiful old houses. Some now serve as the studios and shops of artists and crafts people. At the top you come to Place du Merciers and Place de Cordeliers with shops and restaurants. When staying nearby I like to shop there and have found excellent butchers, bakers and greengrocers.
We like to shop for food around La Place des Merciers and find good bread, cheeses and pate, fruit and vegetables and... more travel advice
This attractive garden behind the Basilique Ste-Sauveur and enclosed by the ramparts is a pleasant place for a stroll,... more travel advice
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