Thursday, 2 January 2020

Cap Frehel in winter

One of the finest places in Brittany is Cap Frehel, a peninsula on the Emerald Coast. The rugged coastline is watched over by two lighthouses and protected by Fort la Latte. Today, the only invaders are tourists but in the Second World War it was an important radar station; few traces now remain except a few blockhouses which are now home to bats.

More enduring is the Chapelle du Vieux Bourg, formerly the parish church of Pléhérel, which stands on top of cliffs 40 metres above a sandy bay. Parts of it date back 800 years, although major work was done in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Its location is a bit of a mystery, as it was never in the heart of the parish. Theories include that Saint Herel had a hermitage in a nearby (and now-disappeared) cave, or that it was an important place of worship under the Romans. In 1870, a new parish church was dedicated at its centre and this building demoted to chapel. Its dilapidated nave was demolished, but worship continued here and today it's in good condition.

The moorland's vegetation is shaped by the poor soil and powerful winds. Its charms are obvious in summer, when the heather and gorse bloom with flowers, but even in winter it is beautiful. 


Geoff Ells said...

I love Cap Frehel in the winter. I usually have it all to mysellf (and my 2 dogs)!
Great photos.

CarolineLD said...

Lucky you! We went a couple of days after Christmas, so the combination of holidays and lovely weather meant it was surprisingly busy.