Brittany is a region situated in the west part of France, stretched between the English Channel and the Atlantic Ocean. The administrative district of the â€śRegion Bretagneâ€ť is divided into four departments, FinistĂ¨re, Cotes-dâ€™Armor, Morbihan and Ille-et-Vilaine, with Rennes as capital.
Most of Brittanyâ€™s charm lies in its cultural heritage and the tight links with the sea. Tens of sea resorts on the coast offer breathtaking sceneries, as well as relax and good food, especially fresh oysters, seabasses, mussels and lobsters.
Breton population is very proud of its identity and independence, as proved by the massive presence of Brittany flags, which are spread all over the country. The flag is known as the â€śGwenn ha Duâ€ť, (black and white in local dialect), and it is made up of nine black and white stripes, with eleven ermins on a white background, located on the upper left corner.
A bit of history
The region was inhabited ever since the Neolithic period (5000- 2000 b.C.), when the first populations settled down in the area known today as Brittany, and built the extraordinary megalithic monuments (menhir and dolmens) that can be still admired today near Carnac and Locmariaquer.
In the VI century b.C. the first Celtic populations came here from the plains of Central Europe, and named the new home â€śArmorâ€ť, which means â€śland on the seaâ€ť, hence the name Armorica.
In 56 b.C. the Roman emperor Julius Caesar conquered the region, which remained under the Roman domain until the V century a.C. Between the V and VII century, as a consequence of the Saxon invasion, many Bretons left their home to settle down in Armorica.
The region was the centre of a bloody dispute between England and French all along the course of the Middle age, being part of a wider fight which goes under the name of â€śHundred Years' Warâ€ť. In 1532, following the Edict of Nantes, Brittany was definitively annexed to the Kingdom of France. Over the centuries however, Brittany managed to preserve its peculiar identity.
Visit also the Loire Valley with its beautiful castles