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High tides in Brittany

On the Pink Granite Coast, as everywhere in France and in the world, each day the sea withdraws and returns 6 hours later: it is the phenomenon of tides caused by the joint attraction of the moon and the sun. In Brittany, we talk about semi-diurnal tides, the sea will be high then low, and this twice a day. Each tide frees up the foreshore, a real playground for fishing enthusiasts, but also for photographers looking for THE view that makes all the difference! Want to know more about the great tides of Brittany? Follow the guide!

Brittany between high and low tides

What could be more beautiful than contemplating the spectacle of the waves? And if there is one place that spoils us in terms of view, it’s Brittany thanks to the high tides!
Sitting quietly on your beach towel, you’ve probably already wondered why the tide rises and falls… And yes, the sea, it goes and it comes back, and this for a good reason. This phenomenon is due to the effects of the attraction of the moon and the sun, which act according to the laws of gravity.

The sun has a rendezvous with the moon

Great tides occur during the full and new moons, when the moon and sun are in alignment with the Earth. This is known as the attraction between the two stars. Thus, because of (or thanks to!) this one, the water level of the coastline will vary according to time and place, and this throughout the day!

What is the tidal coefficient?

All this can be explained by a “simple” story of coefficient. But rest assured! We are not going to do mathematics… The tidal coefficient corresponds to the amplitude of the tidal range: the height between low and high water. Beyond 100 of coefficient, we speak about big tide: the sea goes down very far and goes up very high. For information, the coefficients can vary from 20 to 120. The height of the water is then measured in meters.

Brittany’s gastronomy linked to the tides

In Brittany, the phenomenon of high tides has shaped the coastal landscape according to the waves and the rise or fall of the water. Depending on the time of year, the view changes and brings new specificities to the panorama. For lovers of fresh produce, the high tides are also an opportunity to try the simple pleasures of fishing on foot on the coast of Brittany!

The high tides: a show that will awaken your senses

From Plestin to Lézardrieux, you will discover the spectacle offered by the rise and fall of the water, often accompanied by a storm in winter. At this time of the year, it is on the heights of the coast that you will be able to admire immense waves throwing themselves on the large rocks and slamming against each other. Neither your eyes nor your ears will be able to forget this magical phenomenon: a storm at high tide on the coast of Brittany.

Here on the Granite Coast, during the high tides, at dusk the sun takes on the color of the rocks for the pleasure of our eyes!

During a weekend, I had the chance to go to Brittany during the period of high tides, and the landscapes of the Brittany coastline were breathtaking, to say the least. The beach changes with the rhythm of the tides, and the tides cover and uncover the foreshore, revealing large sandy expanses… So here are my favorite tips and places to enjoy this impressive show.


Castel Erek

A landscape shaped by the tides

Ile Grande

With the rhythm of the tides, colors and lights, Castel Erek offers a beautiful example of preserved coastline. To the northwest of Île Grande, its rocky foreshore is home to a particular fauna and flora, enlivened by the flight of seabirds. The Castel Erek shoreline is exposed to the power of the swell, as evidenced by the many large pebbles that litter the ground. Discover this preserved natural setting, shaped century after century by the force of the wind, the iodized water, and of course the attraction of the moon and the sun. In front of you, a panoramic view of the Seven Islands, Millau Island and the Triagoz Archipelago.

Discover Castel Erek on Ile Grande

Castel Meur

At the edge of the abyss


Cutting out shoreline, fringed with reefs, bristling with rocky mounds, such is the surprising spectacle offered in the vicinity of the site of the Abyss, located on the one that is nicknamed “the Bay of Hell”.
Over the course of time and the sometimes capricious weather, the landscape has been transformed little by little. Complex swell phenomena have led to accumulations of pebbles that have lengthened to give birth to tombolos during high tides. This is one of the most beautiful walks to discover the effects of the tidal phenomenon!

Discover the chasm of Castel Meur

The Pointe du Dourven

between tides and strategies

Trédrez – Locquemeau

Marking the southern entrance to the Leguer estuary, the Pointe du Dourven is presented as a rocky spur of nearly 43 ha. This sensitive natural space, property of the department since 1974, is composed in its natural part, of coastal moors and cliffs, with at the foot of granite chaos. The point was once a strategic place, having been used as a coastal surveillance post against the English in the 18th century. Today, the place offers beautiful walks, and the flora thrives there quietly against all odds (literally!).

Discover the Pointe du Dourven