Sea Food Heaven in Cancale, France

There is an abundance of good sea food restaurants by the shore. Some of them specialize in ‘Moules & Frites’ (mussels and fries), some in sea food platters, and others in oysters.

My husband spent a week in sea food heaven.

This sea food platter was served at the restaurant Au Pied D’Cheval (address: 10 Quai Gambetta)

The restaurant ‘Le Phare’ (6 Quai Administrateur Thomas) served this one. The going price for a sea food platter this size is € 29,00 (one person).

The assistant shucking oysters at ‘Au Pied d’Cheval’.

Restaurant ‘Au Pied d’Cheval’ in Cancale

Shucking oyster equipment and work place at Au Pied d’Cheval.

We also bought oysters directly from the market vendors by the shore. There are only about six booths, so it is a small marché. My husband got a dozen oysters for € 6. You can eat them right there or take them home (which we did). If I remember correctly, the lady vendor even threw in an extra one for my husband. There is a big heap of shells on the sand next to the marché area. They came from the sea, they will go back to the sea.

Oysters in Cancale

Every evening, we had dinner at one of the restaurants by the shore. My husband loves sea food, I don’t. I usually rotated my choice of dinner between steak one evening, and omelet the next evening. The selection of non-sea food dishes is limited, understandably so.

 

Pretty Weeds in Cancale, France

I found this beautiful weed flower in our vacation rental’s courtyard in Cancale. Wi-fi was a bit spotty at times, so I turned to one source only: my friends on FB and here are their responses to my inquiry for its name. 🙂

Agapanthus African

Well, depending on my friends’ locations, I got various answers.

Virginia/USA: Lily of the Nile

Denmark: Agapanthus africanus

U.K: agapanthus

Germany: Schmucklilie

Australia: Agapatha  – They are extremely hardy. Root system is almost impossible to remove. They spread. Flower pretty. Need to cut off the dead heads after the flowers have died, otherwise all your complex and your surrounding neighbours will have them too.

Germany: They grow like weed. Be careful, or your ‘Beer Balcony’ will turn into an ‘Agapanthus Balkon’!

A similar weed is the ‘Canna Rouge’, that was the name given by the Brocante shop owner in Cancale, where I bought some seeds.

Canna Rouge

In the same courtyard in Cancale, it was my first time to see a banana plant outside the Frankfurt Palmengarten.

Banana plant

Well, I have returned with seeds for both weeds. Since I only have a balcony, they will be safe from spreading.

An Afternoon Visit to Mont-Saint-Michel

On the spur of the moment, while touring villages around Cancale, we decided to drive over to Mont-Saint-Michel. I had not been there since 1986, so I was in for a big surprise.

If I recall correctly (mind you, it has been over 30 years), there was no street leading up to the abbey. We just stood at the shore, and saw it from a distance of about 600m on that cool, rainy, and overcast day.

Now Mont-Saint-Michel is overcrowded, and so was the shuttle bus as well. My first impression was that this has become a tourist trap.

A majestic site from afar! And I recommend you leave it that way, and bring a picnic basket instead.

 

About 2.5 million tourists a year visit Mont-Saint-Michel. I found the shops boring with the same old merchandise in each one.

It takes about 350 steps to climb up to the abbey (entrance fee is € 10). My husband went in, but I preferred to remain outside. The entrance area by the abbey was not crowded, it had a few places to sit in the shade, and I used the time to observe and take some notes.

The village’s Benedictine Abbaye du Mont Saint-Michel.

Things to Know Before You Go
  • The parking lot on the mainland is 1.5 miles (2.4 kilometers) from the island. A shuttle will take you from the parking lot to a drop-off point. You need to walk another 440 yards (400 meters) to get to the entrance.
  • There are narrow walkways and steps, so wear comfortable shoes and be prepare for some elbowing.
  • You have to walk from the shuttle drop off to the entrance. The paved main street has no stairs, but it climbs quickly. Then you have 350 steps from the main street to the abbey.
  • There is no elevator.

Mont-Saint-Michel is a Gothic-style Benedictine abbey and dedicated to the archangel St Michael.

One Week in Cancale, the Oyster Capital of Brittany

Cancale, a small fishing village situated on the Emerald Coast, can also claim the title for being the Oyster Capital of Brittany.

Through booking.com, we had booked a small apartment for two adults near the sea. We arrived after an eleven-hour drive from Oberursel a bit before 9pm. After we had checked in, we were lucky to find a restaurant around 9:45 to still serve us on a Saturday night. And we were starving by then.

We were happy to arrive at last.

Cancale

This shows the other side of the same vacation apartment we had booked (top floor in the red building).

Cancale

I’m an early riser, and my better half is a late sleeper. He appreciates it when I let him sleep, while I sneak out of the house early in the morning. I always have my iPad camera, my journal, and a book. All I need to find is a bench to read or update my journal.

This was my impression on my first morning in Cancale.

Early morning in Cancale

A bit later in the morning, I went to look for a bakery in the center of Cancale, which lies a bit up the hill (a good ten-minute walk from the sea). I found a bakery, and got to practice my rusty French. But you can’t really do much damage to ‘Bonjour!’ and ‘Deux croissants, s’il vous plait.’

Later, we took a walk together and discovered the meaning of Emerald Coast.

Cancale on the Emerald Coast

Every morning during that week, I checked the weather forecast and it called for 19°C. There was something wrong with the forecast, because we had 30°C weather e-v-e-r-y day.

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