About Brittany

Revel in balmy Brittany

History lovers and foodies alike will relish a boating holiday in Brittany. A Celtic land laced with canalised rivers studded with towering castles seemingly at every turn, boat hire in Brittany ushers you into an especially unique French locale. You’re not far from the North Atlantic coast, so seafood in the region's many restaurants is in order! You can also venture to Nantes and Dinan for the museums, historic sites, and fine restaurants.

 

Map showing where Brittany boating region is in France

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If you are unable to find your perfect holiday on our website please contact our Boating Experts who may be able to help create a bespoke offering for you.

Brittany map

Brittany map

  = Le Boat Base           = Canal           = Navigable river          = No navigation beyond this point

The perfect boating region for...

History & Heritage

Nantes Museum in Brittany

You’ll never tire of the châteaux in the Land of a Thousand Castles, as Brittany is called! Put the Château de Josselin high on your history holiday list. Don't forget to discover the fascinating museums and Castle in Nantes.

Gastronomy

Man holding Oysters

Seafood, especially Breton oysters, is a must on boating holidays in Brittany. Indulge in a savoury galette or a sweet crêpe, washed down with the local cider or Muscadet wine, which are delicious! Whilst you’re in Suce-sur-Erdre, enjoy fine dining at elegant Le Clos St. Thomas.

Family

Baby in Bath in Brittany

Four-footed friends await the kids at Dinan’s La Bourbansais Zoo! Book your Brittany river cruise in August to coincide with the St. Laurent Festival in Blain. All the family can enjoy the butterfly reserve in La Gacillly and the Water Museum in Malestroit enchants the little ones.

Nature Lovers

Canoeing in Brittany

As you go cruising in Brittany, you may see herons, gannets and hawks. Deer and wild boar occasionally show themselves. The marshes and peaks of Aux Pies on the River Oust are excellent for trekking and observing nature.

Useful information

Download our Region Guide

Check out our region guideWe've produced a handy PDF guide for this region to give you an overview of all the stops and things to do along the waterway.

Download our region guide

Take a close look at a Brittany map and it’s obvious that this vast peninsula runs blue with rivers. Whilst many are called canals, they are simply tamed rivers with locks to better manage flooding and the big tides common on France’s northwest coast. Your Brittany boat hire in France focuses mainly on the lovely Canal de Nantes à Brest that twists and turns 360 kilometres (224 miles) from Nantes to Brest, covering the Aulne, Oust, Isac and Erdre rivers.

 

Another series of waterways slices north-south. To the north, the little used Canal d’Illle-et-Rance hooks up with the beautiful Vilaine River at Rennes. Cruising north to Dinan puts you on the canal, and cruising south on the Vilaine takes you all the way to the sea at the commercial port of La Roche-Bernard. The Villaine is a total of 218 kilometres (135 miles), and it’s delightful.

War with Great Britain under the rule of Napoleon Bonaparte, emperor of France from 1804 to 1815, spurred the development of the canalised rivers in Brittany. English warships blockaded the coast. To mitigate the threat, work began on the canal system in 1804. British prisoners of war provided some of the labour. However, after Napoleon’s defeat in 1814 the work halted, until it was resumed in 1822. Ten years later, much of the canalised river system was in place.

We've partnered up with some of the best local businesses from the towns and villages in Brittany to help you get the most out of your Le Boat holiday.

Discover our range of exclusive offers, only available to Le Boat customers. 

The Vilaine River is gentle and inviting. It’s fine for beginners. The Canal de Nantes à Brest is docile too. Cruising on the lower River Loire south of Nantes is not allowed.

Take a look at our waterway and lock closures page to find out if there are any scheduled cruising restrictions that will affect your holiday plans.

Locks in Brittany are mostly automatic and have lock keepers. Some are manual and you’ll operate those yourself.

 

Opening hours: During the busy summer season locks are open 09:00 – 19:00. Locks are closed for lunch between 12:00 - 13:30.

 

Public holidays: Locks are open as normal.

Moorings are plentiful in Brittany, and most services are available. Expect to pay between 10 and 15 euros per night for a boat about 10 metres (33 feet) in length. Rates are a bit higher in some ports.

To find out how to get to our base in this boating region, as well as what facilities and amenities are available nearby, click on the link below:

  • Hire of the boat and its onboard equipment
  • A fully equipped kitchen
  • Towels and linen for all passengers
  • A boat handling demonstration prior to departure
  • Technical support
  • On-board maps and visitor information
  • Passage through locks
  • Optional holiday extras
  • Boat damage waiver
  • Running costs (diesel, gas, engine wear and tear) - charged by the engine hour.
  • Travel to and from the base(s)
  • Waterside services if you use them (i.e. moorings where a charge is applicable, pump-out if needed, water, etc)
  • Cancellation plan & any travel/personal insurance
  • Food and drink

Interactive map of Brittany

Bases  = Le Boat base  Chateau = Point of interest

Great to see…

Must see

Nantes is one of the most beautiful cities in France. There are many places and monuments to see. Given the abundance of history to explore, consider getting the "Pass Nantes," a pass that will allow you to visit as many monuments and museums as you'd like during your visit.

A very nice and peaceful little town on the edge of the River Erdre, Sucé-sur-Erdre will charm you with its restaurants, cafés, and elegant terraces. Along the river, you will find cycle paths if you'd like to go for a ride. You can visit the Tower Gaillard, the last "vestige" of a temple built by the protestants in the 16th century.

Nort-sur-Erdre is a peaceful and charming city. Here, you will enjoy a welcoming marina, a very scenic place to stay. You can also survey the distinct architecture of the castle of Port-Mulon, built in the 18th century.

A city full of character, Blain hosts an immense castle riddled with history from all of its previous invaders. Here you can visit the Saint-Roch chapel, and the museum of arts and tradition.

Guenrouët is an inviting and peaceful stop. The leisure centre has something for everyone: an open-air pool with slide, whirlpool, grassy areas, pedalos, canoes and kayaks, picnic areas, and a mini-golf course themed after the local canal. The village and shops are just 200 metres away.

Welcome to La-Roche-Bernard. This town is well worth exploring. Historically an important seaport, it is still a thriving yachting centre today and its streets are filled with little shops and places to eat.

An official ‘City of character’, Redon sits at the crossroads of the Vilaine River and the Canal de Nantes à Brest. This maritime port was an important stop on the way to Rennes, and each year hundreds of ships were loaded with salt, wine and other goods to be transported to the north. Quai Duguay-Trouin pays testament to this flourishing era with many beautiful 18th mansions built by ship merchants which line the promenade. Don’t miss the ‘Musée de la Batellerie de l’Ouest’ which retraces the epic history of the Brittany canals and the life of the sailors.

In the direction of La Gacilly, the Oust River crosses between granite cliffs, creating natural paradises like the Ile-aux-Pies. This island is an adventurers’ paradise, with climbing peaks, hiking trails, and a zipline. Kids, big and small, can while away the hours, trying their hand at archery, tree climbing and fishing.

Must see

From early May, La Gacilly is blooming with a wonderful, colourful display of flowers along the streets and bridges of the town. It is also home of the famous Yves Rocher cosmetic factory.  

Rich with history,  Malestroit was one of the 9 "baronnies" of independent Brittany and has maintained many impressive buildings from this period, including quaint, historic houses with timber framing that you can still admire in the old town.

Must see

Destroyed and rebuilt several times, the castle of Josselin is perhaps the most beautiful in all of Brittany. While here, take time to stroll through the narrow streets and admire the old houses clustered around the town centre.

Messac is home to a few interesting local churches and has lovely country tracks, perfect for taking a walk and discovering the natural beauty of the region. Today, this pretty town is classified as a ‘green tourist station’ thanks to its excellent tourist and sporting facilities. Why not give it a try?

Enter Pont-Rean by crossing its charming bridge entrance. There are many colourful landscapes to discover, especially at Le Boël which is located next to the city. The old stone-pit is also a lovely place to walk around.

Must see
Rennes town square in Brittany

Rennes is Brittany's dynamic capital city. There is a thriving architectural and religious heritage which can be seen when touring St Pierre's Cathedral, St Madeleine Abbey and St Germain church. Brittany's extravagant parliament building displays its extraordinary wealth through its decor. Consider taking a break in the splendid Thabor Gardens. Rennes is a very lively town with many things to do and see all year long.

Hédé is a genial little village set on a hill by the canal, hence the need for the many locks. You will see three historic churches here - one is from the Roman period. The Musée de la Maison du Canal has many permanent and visiting exhibitions showing life on the canal from days gone by.

At Tinténiac, visit the wonderful Saint-Trinité church. The local architecture is exquisite, with its charming 15th and 16th century houses. This place is an excellent spot to moor, and if you need something, you will find several shops and services.

Lehon is listed as one of the top 30 most beautiful locations in Brittany. A single street leads from the ruined castle on the hill, down to a little hump-backed bridge over the river,  passing an abbey along the way. Take a dip into the heated outdoor swimming pool and visit the traditional bakery at the top of the village.

Must see

Dinan is widely acknowledged as one of the most picturesque towns in Brittany. The old town is a maze of narrow cobblestone streets and old medieval timbered buildings.

Itinerary suggestions

Our boating holidays allow you the freedom to stop when you want and take each day as it comes. However, you might like to be guided by one of our day-by-day suggested itineraries, complete with estimated cruising times and restaurant recommendations. You can follow it religiously or just use it for ideas – whatever 'floats your boat'. Please bear in mind that our itineraries are just suggestions. Cruising times are estimates and access to waterways, attractions and restaurants are all subject to availability at time of cruising.

Route suggestions

To help you get an idea of how far you can travel in the time you have, here's a selection of routes to and from our bases in this region. You dont have to stop at all the places listed or follow the route exactly. So long as you return your boat to your end base by the date you've booked - you're free to enjoy your cruise however you like. For a comfortable pace, allowing you time to regularly stop and explore, we'd recommend an average of 2 - 4 hours cruising each day.

La Gacilly flowers

The Great Brittany Long Break

Messac
Redon
Guenrouët
Blain
Nort-sur-Edre
Sucé-sur-Erdre
Nantes
Ile-aux-Pies
La Gacilly
Malestroit
Josselin
Messac

68 hr(s) of cruising

402km 68 locks 14 nights

The Great Brittany Long Break

Messac RETURN via Josselin & Blain

Messac RETURN via Josselin & Blain

Scroll down using the grey bar to the right

Overview

Taking your time to see what intrigues you is the essence of French canal holidays, and that’s exactly what you’ve decided to do on an extended foray in Brittany! Top on your list is Nantes with its many museums and its impressive cathedral, along with Josselin’s castle and Redon’s Richelieu Tower. Cycling, swimming, golf and tennis anyone?

Top highlights:

  • The Musée de la Batellerie de l’Ouest’ in Redon
  • Canoeing and kayaking in Guenrouët 
  • Cycling by the river and visiting the Tower Gaillard in Sucé-sur-Erdre
  • Grabbing a 'Pass Nantes' and exploring the eccentric arts of Nantes
  • Exploring Josselin's Castle

Example itinerary:

The following is only an example, you can explore this area in whichever order you want, so long as your boat is back at the end base at the end of your holiday:

  • Messac: Messac is home to a few interesting local churches and has lovely country tracks, perfect for taking a walk and discovering the natural beauty of the region. Today, this pretty town is classified as a 'green tourist station' thanks to its excellent tourist and sporting facilities. Why not give it a try?
  • Redon: An official ‘city of character’, Redon sits at the crossroads of the Vilaine River and the Canal de Nantes à Brest. This maritime port was an important stop on the way to Rennes, and each year hundreds of ships were loaded with salt, wine and other goods to be transported to the north. Quai Duguay-Trouin pays testament to this flourishing era with many beautiful 18th century mansions built by ship merchants which line the promenade. Don’t miss the ‘Musée de la Batellerie de l’Ouest’ which retraces the epic history of the Brittany canals and the life of the sailors.
  • Guenrouët: Guenrouët is an inviting and peaceful stop. The leisure center has something for everyone: an open-air pool with slide, whirlpool, grassy areas, paddle boats, canoes and kayaks, picnic areas, and a mini-golf course themed after the local canal. The village and shops are just 200 meters away.
  • Blain: A city full of character, Blain hosts an immense castle riddled with history from all of its previous invaders. Here you can visit the Saint-Roch chapel, and the museum of arts and tradition.
  • Nort-sur-Erdre: Nort-sur-erdre is a peaceful and charming city. Here, you will enjoy a welcoming marina, a very scenic place to stay. You can also survey the distinct architecture of the castle of Port-Mulon, built in the 18th century.
  • Sucé-sur-Erdre: A very nice and peaceful little town on the edge of the River Erdre, Suce-sur-Erdre will charm you with its restaurants, cafés, and elegant terraces. Along the river, you will find cycle paths if you'd like to go for a ride. You can visit the Tower Gaillard, the last vestige of a temple built by the protestants in the 16th century.
  • Nantes: Nantes is one of the most beautiful cities in France. There are many places and monuments to see. Given the abundance of history to explore, consider getting the 'Pass Nantes', a pass that will allow you to visit as many monuments and museums as you'd like during your visit.
  • Ile-aux-Pies: In the direction of La Gacilly, the Oust River crosses between granite cliffs, creating natural paradises like the Ile-aux-Pies. This island is an adventurers’ paradise, with climbing peaks, hiking trails, and a zipline. Kids, big and small, can while away the hours, trying their hand at archery, tree climbing and fishing.
  • La Gacilly: From early May, La Gacilly is blooming with a wonderful, colorful display of flowers along the streets and bridges of the town. It is also home of the famous Yves Rocher cosmetic factory.
  • Malestroit: Rich with history, Malestroit was one of the "nine baronnies" of independent Brittany and has maintained many impressive buildings from this period, including quaint, historic houses with timber framing that you can still admire in the old town.
  • Josselin: Destroyed and rebuilt several times, the castle of Josselin is perhaps the most beautiful in all of Brittany. While here, take time to stroll through the narrow streets and admire the old houses clustered around the town centre.

68 hr(s) of cruising

402km 68 locks 14 nights
Castle Josselin and Le Boats in Brittany

The Best of Brittany Long Break

Messac
Pont-Rean
Rennes
Redon
Ile-aux-Pies
La Gacilly
Malestroit
Josselin
Messac

56 hr(s) of cruising

304km 54 locks 10 nights

The Best of Brittany Long Break

Messac RETURN via Rennes & Josselin

Messac RETURN via Rennes & Josselin

Scroll down using the grey bar to the right

Overview

Rennes intrigued you, and now that you’re exploring the city’s historic sites you’re glad you came! Next you turn south to see the medieval towns and castles on the Canal de Nantes à Brest, a fabulous trip through rural lands. Extended French canal holidays have opened up time to see Redon, the Little Venice of Brittany, and for a jaunt to charming Josselin with its turreted castle!

Top highlights:

  • Thabor Gardens and the beautiful cathedral in Rennes
  • Climbing peaks, hiking trails, and a zip line in lle-aux-Pies
  • Exploring Josselin's Castle
  • The beautiful blooming flowers of La Gacilly
  • The Musée de la Batellerie de l'Ouest in Redon

Example itinerary:

The following is only an example, you can explore this area in whichever order you want, so long as your boat is back at the end base at the end of your holiday:

  • Messac: Messac is home to a few interesting local churches and has lovely country tracks, perfect for taking a walk and discovering the natural beauty of the region. Today, this pretty town is classified as a 'green tourist station' thanks to its excellent tourist and sporting facilities. Why not give it a try?
  • Pont-Réan: Enter Pont-Rean by crossing its charming bridge entrance. There are many colourful landscapes to discover, especially at Le Boël which is located next to the city. The old stone-pit is also a lovely place to walk around.
  • Rennes: Rennes is Brittany's dynamic capital city. There is a thriving architectural and religious heritage which can be seen when touring St Pierre's Cathedral, St Madeleine Abbey and St Germain church. Brittany's extravagant parliament building displays its extraordinary wealth through its decor. Consider taking a break in the splendid Thabor Gardens. Rennes is a very lively town with many things to do and see all year long.
  • Redon: An official ‘city of character’, Redon sits at the crossroads of the Vilaine River and the Canal de Nantes à Brest. This maritime port was an important stop on the way to Rennes, and each year hundreds of ships were loaded with salt, wine and other goods to be transported to the north. Quai Duguay-Trouin pays testament to this flourishing era with many beautiful 18th century mansions built by ship merchants which line the promenade. Don’t miss the ‘Musée de la Batellerie de l’Ouest’ which retraces the epic history of the Brittany canals and the life of the sailors.
  • Ile-aux-Pies: In the direction of La Gacilly, the Oust River crosses between granite cliffs, creating natural paradises like the Ile-aux-Pies. This island is an adventurers’ paradise, with climbing peaks, hiking trails, and a zipline. Kids, big and small, can while away the hours, trying their hand at archery, tree climbing and fishing.
  • La Gacilly: From early May, La Gacilly is blooming with a wonderful, colorful display of flowers along the streets and bridges of the town. It is also home of the famous Yves Rocher cosmetic factory.
  • Malestroit: Rich with history, Malestroit was one of the "nine baronnies" of independent Brittany and has maintained many impressive buildings from this period, including quaint, historic houses with timber framing that you can still admire in the old town.
  • Josselin: Destroyed and rebuilt several times, the castle of Josselin is perhaps the most beautiful in all of Brittany. While here, take time to stroll through the narrow streets and admire the old houses clustered around the town centre.

56 hr(s) of cruising

304km 54 locks 10 nights
Cannon in Brittany

The Brittany History Cruise

Messac
Redon
La Roche Bernard
Guenrouët
Blain
Nort-sur-Edre
Sucé-sur-Erdre
Nantes
Messac

44 hr(s) of cruising

280km 36 locks 7 nights

The Brittany History Cruise

Messac RETURN via Nantes

 Messac RETURN via Nantes

Scroll down using the grey bar to the right

Overview

The rugged Celtic beauty of Brittany’s waterways captivates your every sense. Castles and abbeys perch on bluffs, small villages nestle along tree-clad shores, and open meadows of lush green contrast against the shimmering blue of the waters. You stop to picnic at the edge of the forest of Gâvre, savouring the delight of French canal holidays.

Top highlights:

  • Canoeing and kayaking in Guenrouët 
  • The arts and traditions of Blain
  • Cycling by the river and visiting the Tower Gaillard in Sucé-sur-Erdre 
  • Grabbing a 'Pass Nantes' and exploring the eccentric arts of Nantes

Example itinerary:

The following is only an example, you can explore this area in whichever order you want, so long as your boat is back at the end base at the end of your holiday:

  • Messac: Messac is home to a few interesting local churches and has lovely country tracks, perfect for taking a walk and discovering the natural beauty of the region. Today, this pretty town is classified as a 'green tourist station' thanks to its excellent tourist and sporting facilities. Why not give it a try?
  • Redon: An official ‘city of character’, Redon sits at the crossroads of the Vilaine River and the Canal de Nantes à Brest. This maritime port was an important stop on the way to Rennes, and each year hundreds of ships were loaded with salt, wine and other goods to be transported to the north. Quai Duguay-Trouin pays testament to this flourishing era with many beautiful 18th century mansions built by ship merchants which line the promenade. Don’t miss the ‘Musée de la Batellerie de l’Ouest’ which retraces the epic history of the Brittany canals and the life of the sailors.
  • La Roche-Bernard: Welcome to La-Roche-Bernard. This town is well worth exploring. Historically an important seaport, it is still a thriving yachting centre today and its streets are filled with little shops and places to eat.
  • Guenrouët: Guenrouët is an inviting and peaceful stop. The leisure center has something for everyone: an open-air pool with slide, whirlpool, grassy areas, paddle boats, canoes and kayaks, picnic areas, and a mini-golf course themed after the local canal. The village and shops are just 200 meters away.
  • Blain: A city full of character, Blain hosts an immense castle riddled with history from all of its previous invaders. Here you can visit the Saint-Roch chapel, and the museum of arts and tradition.
  • Nort-sur-Erdre: Nort-sur-erdre is a peaceful and charming city. Here, you will enjoy a welcoming marina, a very scenic place to stay. You can also survey the distinct architecture of the castle of Port-Mulon, built in the 18th century.
  • Sucé-sur-Erdre: A very nice and peaceful little town on the edge of the River Erdre, Suce-sur-Erdre will charm you with its restaurants, cafés, and elegant terraces. Along the river, you will find cycle paths if you'd like to go for a ride. You can visit the Tower Gaillard, the last vestige of a temple built by the protestants in the 16th century.
  • Nantes: Nantes is one of the most beautiful cities in France. There are many places and monuments to see. Given the abundance of history to explore, consider getting the 'Pass Nantes', a pass that will allow you to visit as many monuments and museums as you'd like during your visit.

44 hr(s) of cruising

280km 36 locks 7 nights
Old stone Breton Church

The Gardens and Castles Cruise

Messac
Redon
Ile-aux-Pies
La Gacilly
Malestroit
Josselin
Messac

35 hr(s) of cruising

208km 36 locks 7 nights

The Gardens and Castles Cruise

Messac RETURN via Josselin

Messac RETURN via Josselin

Scroll down using the grey bar to the right

As you stroll through quaint waterside towns, you notice the abundance of colorful flowers and public gardens. The love of everything floral seems universal, and it adds to the charm of French canal holidays in Brittany. Getting into the spirit, you plan a visit to the Yves Rocher Botanical Gardens in La Gacilly, and the grand Château at Josselin!

Top highlights:

  • The ‘Musée de la Batellerie de l’Ouest’ in Redon
  • Climbing peaks, hiking trails, and a zip line in lle-aux-Pies
  • Malestroit's quaint historic houses
  • The beautiful blooming flowers of La Gacilly
  • Exploring Josselin's Castle

Example itinerary:

The following is only an example, you can explore this area in whichever order you want, so long as your boat is back at the end base at the end of your vacation:

  • Messac: Messac is home to a few interesting local churches and has lovely country tracks, perfect for taking a walk and discovering the natural beauty of the region. Today, this pretty town is classified as a 'green tourist station' thanks to its excellent tourist and sporting facilities. Why not give it a try?
  • Redon: An official ‘city of character’, Redon sits at the crossroads of the Vilaine River and the Canal de Nantes à Brest. This maritime port was an important stop on the way to Rennes, and each year hundreds of ships were loaded with salt, wine and other goods to be transported to the north. Quai Duguay-Trouin pays testament to this flourishing era with many beautiful 18th century mansions built by ship merchants which line the promenade. Don’t miss the ‘Musée de la Batellerie de l’Ouest’ which retraces the epic history of the Brittany canals and the life of the sailors.
  • Ile-aux-Pies: In the direction of La Gacilly, the Oust River crosses between granite cliffs, creating natural paradises like the Ile-aux-Pies. This island is an adventurers’ paradise, with climbing peaks, hiking trails, and a zipline. Kids, big and small, can while away the hours, trying their hand at archery, tree climbing and fishing.
  • La Gacilly: From early May, La Gacilly is blooming with a wonderful, colorful display of flowers along the streets and bridges of the town. It is also home of the famous Yves Rocher cosmetic factory.
  • Malestroit: Rich with history, Malestroit was one of the "nine baronnies" of independent Brittany and has maintained many impressive buildings from this period, including quaint, historic houses with timber framing that you can still admire in the old town.
  • Josselin: Destroyed and rebuilt several times, the castle of Josselin is perhaps the most beautiful in all of Brittany. While here, take time to stroll through the narrow streets and admire the old houses clustered around the town centre.

35 hr(s) of cruising

208km 36 locks 7 nights
Breton lock

The Little Venice of Brittany Short Break

Messac
Redon
Ile-aux-Pies
La Gacilly
Messac

18 hr(s) of cruising

120km 6 locks 3 nights

The Little Venice of Brittany Short Break

Messac RETURN via La Gacilly

Messac RETURN via La Gacilly

Scroll down using the grey bar to the right

Overview

The Vilaine River sparkles ahead as you draw near to pretty Redon, a city so crisscrossed with waterways and bridges it is often called Little Venice. Cathedrals and castles rise from the shore, and you’re glad to be boating in France! After you sightsee, you intend to linger over a dessert of Breton Far, a regional pudding similar to flan topped with juicy plums and luscious custard!

Top highlights:

  • Climbing peaks, hiking trails, and a zip line in lle-aux-Pies
  • The ‘Musée de la Batellerie de l’Ouest’ in Redon
  • The beautiful blooming flowers of La Gacilly

Example itinerary:

The following is only an example, you can explore this area in whichever order you want, so long as your boat is back at the end base at the end of your holiday:

  • Messac: Messac is home to a few interesting local churches and has lovely country tracks, perfect for taking a walk and discovering the natural beauty of the region. Today, this pretty town is classified as a 'green tourist station' thanks to its excellent tourist and sporting facilities. Why not give it a try?
  • Redon: An official ‘city of character’, Redon sits at the crossroads of the Vilaine River and the Canal de Nantes à Brest. This maritime port was an important stop on the way to Rennes, and each year hundreds of ships were loaded with salt, wine and other goods to be transported to the north. Quai Duguay-Trouin pays testament to this flourishing era with many beautiful 18th century mansions built by ship merchants which line the promenade. Don’t miss the ‘Musée de la Batellerie de l’Ouest’ which retraces the epic history of the Brittany canals and the life of the sailors.
  • Ile-aux-Pies: In the direction of La Gacilly, the Oust River crosses between granite cliffs, creating natural paradises like the Ile-aux-Pies. This island is an adventurers’ paradise, with climbing peaks, hiking trails, and a zipline. Kids, big and small, can while away the hours, trying their hand at archery, tree climbing and fishing.
  • La Gacilly: From early May, La Gacilly is blooming with a wonderful, colorful display of flowers along the streets and bridges of the town. It is also home of the famous Yves Rocher cosmetic factory.

18 hr(s) of cruising

120km 6 locks 3 nights
Cannon in Brittany

The Napoleon III Short Break

Messac
Redon
La Roche Bernard
Messac

20 hr(s) of cruising

152km 4 locks 4 nights

The Napoleon III Short Break

Messac RETURN via La Roche-Bernard

Messac RETURN via La Roche-Bernard

Scroll down using the grey bar to the right

Overview

The sea exerts a magnetic pull on you in spectacular Brittany, and you’re thrilled to be boating in France. You snap pictures as you pass Napoleonic castles rising from forest-clad shores, and you contemplate the rich Celtic culture of the people. Soon historic Redon looms off the bow, and you and your friends decide to go sightseeing!

Top highlights:

  • The ‘Musée de la Batellerie de l’Ouest’ in Redon
  • The beautiful blooming flowers of La Gacilly

Example itinerary:

The following is only an example, you can explore this area in whichever order you want, so long as your boat is back at the end base at the end of your vacation:

  • Messac: Messac is home to a few interesting local churches and has lovely country tracks, perfect for taking a walk and discovering the natural beauty of the region. Today, this pretty town is classified as a 'green tourist station' thanks to its excellent tourist and sporting facilities. Why not give it a try?
  • Redon: An official ‘city of character’, Redon sits at the crossroads of the Vilaine River and the Canal de Nantes à Brest. This maritime port was an important stop on the way to Rennes, and each year hundreds of ships were loaded with salt, wine and other goods to be transported to the north. Quai Duguay-Trouin pays testament to this flourishing era with many beautiful 18th century mansions built by ship merchants which line the promenade. Don’t miss the ‘Musée de la Batellerie de l’Ouest’ which retraces the epic history of the Brittany canals and the life of the sailors.
  • La Roche-Bernard: Welcome to La-Roche-Bernard. This town is well worth exploring. Historically an important seaport, it is still a thriving yachting centre today and its streets are filled with little shops and places to eat.

20 hr(s) of cruising

152km 4 locks 4 nights

Our Feefo reviews

Feefo is an independent and impartial review service that requests reviews directly from those who have been on a Le Boat vacation. Below you can read what our past customers think about their Le Boat experience, and trust that what you read is unfiltered, unedited and uncensored.

Added on 19 August 2023

A customer said

Yes a great holiday Good boat nice trip on pretty river
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Good day, Thank you for taking the time to write a review. of your boating holiday. We are delighted to hear that you had a great time and that our amazing staff was able to be of assistance to you. We look forward to welcoming you onboard again. Kind regards Refilwe from Le Boat
Messac - Messac
Magnifique
Added on 9 August 2023

Randy said

The crew at Messac base all deserve kudos for providing all the information, including maps and boat essentials needed to have a great experience. We went looking for an adventure and Le Boat provided the proper tools for that. Great boat, Horizon 1. Easy to drive & to live on.
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Good day Randy, Thank you for taking the time to write a five-star review of your boating holiday. We are delighted to hear that you had a great time on your Le Boat experience and that the staff were helpful and provided you with everything you needed. We look forward to welcoming you onboard again. Kind regards Refilwe from Le Boat
Messac - Messac
Horizon 1
Added on 21 July 2023

Alison Nicholls said

The staff were all superb and the pre departure communication brilliant and very easy to book additional ancillary items! Maps and tips on what to visit were great and we had a fabulous trip and cannot wait to do another ! Lovely scenery and easy route if you don’t want too many locks to navigate and La Gacilly our turn around point is delightful!
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Good day Alison, Thank you for taking the time to write a five-star review of your boating holiday. We are so delighted to hear that you had a fantastic time during your Le Boat experience, and that Le Boat staff were able to be of assistance and accommodated your requirements during the booking process. We look forward to welcoming you onboard again. Kind regards Refilwe from Le Boat
Messac - Messac
Corvette A
Added on 1 July 2023

Andy Mossack said

Excellent boat, with great briefing and support. Brittany is lovely.
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Good morning Andy, Thank you for taking the time to write a five-star review of your boating holiday in Brittany. We are delighted to hear that you had a great time, and received some excellent service from our experienced staff. We look forward to welcoming you onboard again soon. Kind regards Refilwe from Le Boat
Messac - Messac
Calypso
Added on 24 June 2023

Sally-Anne Whittington said

The Service was excellent from start to finish.. We received a very warm welcome when we checked in at reception plus this Lady's English was brilliant. Such a multi talented lady. She was informative and very cheerful in her delivery of the information. The boat was well equipped with plenty of storage for the 6 of us. Our only suggestion would be to have a couple of towel rails in the cabins or galley.. The itinerary was very helpful and so too was the information given to us at reception. Our cruise was very relaxing and enjoyable.
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Good morning Sally-Anne, Thank you for taking the time to write a five-star review of your boating holiday in France. We are delighted to hear that you had a fantastic time and received some excellent service from our experienced staff. We look forward to welcoming you onboard again soon. Kind regards Refilwe from Le Boat
Messac - Messac
Calypso
Added on 9 June 2023

Brad Oud said

Very friendly and helpful Boat, Royal Mystique A, was in very good condition and loads of room for 4 adults. Enjoyed the scenery and stops on the Nantes-Brest canal and were lucky enough to have lovely weather, thank goodness for the air conditioning on the boat.
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Good morning Brad, Thank you for taking the time to write a five-star review of your boating holiday on the canal. We are delighted to hear that you had an excellent time and received friendly and helpful service from our experienced staff. We look forward to welcoming you onboard again. Kind regards Refilwe from Le Boat
Messac - Messac
Royal Mystique A
Added on 29 April 2023

A customer said

Excellent staff. Boat well set up. Couldn’t ask for more Staff and service. Cruising options
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Good day, Thank you for your five-star review of your boating holiday in Brittany! We are so pleased to hear that your received nothing short of excellent service from our staff that your had everything you needed on board for a fantastic trip. We hope to welcome you back on board in the near future! Best Wishes, Elyse, Le Boat
Messac - Messac
Corvette A
Added on 8 April 2022