Thursday 1 June 2017

Abbaye de Bon-Repos' 30th Anniversary

Every year, all the regions in Brittany organise a week long Fête de la Bretagne, and we definitely wanted to be in the loop to see if anything was happening around the area we live in. When I learnt that the Abbaye de Bon-Repos was organising a massive open day to celebrate this Fête as well as its 30th Anniversary, I told Jason that we had to go.

After a week of grey weather with quite a bit of rain, it felt so good to be outside in the sun for a whole day! We arrived at around 12.30pm but the performances and activities weren't starting until 2pm, so we took the time to have a picnic (that I prepared quickly before leaving the house) and explore the grounds of the Abbaye.

We were pleased to find so many beautiful historical buildings as well as a nice area around the river where you can find a local market every Sunday morning. Plus, we met a British group that meet regularly at the Abbaye with their retro cars and Jason was over the moon. It's nice to know that there are local British people that are crazy about their cars and we can't wait to bring back the Capri from Wales so that we can take part in their meetings (they obviously warmly welcome French people too by the way!).

(PS: I loved this turquoise 2CV!)

This amazing building was built a couple of centuries ago alongside the ruins of an ancient Abbaye (there's definitely not much left of it!). However, at the beginning of the 20th century, it was left unoccupied and it was quickly covered by ivy, with trees growing inside its cloister.

It was exactly 30 years ago that the council decided to start the renovations and to open it to the public, organising regular exhibitions and activities around it. I'm so glad they did! You know how crazy we are about these types of places, full of history and intriguing architecture.

There were plenty of activities planned all afternoon and we didn't get bored for one second. I really enjoyed watching the 19th century traditional dances and it was nice to see these people in their costumes walking around and having fun too.

We also watched a few horse shows, which is always impressive! We almost missed the jousting that was taking place in front of the Abbaye. I didn't manage to take good pictures when we caught up with it, but it was amazing! Obviously their goal wasn't to kill the other knight, but you could tell that the horses were really going for it and the settings and costumes were beautiful.

Towards the end of the day, we indulged in a traditional homemade crêpe with salted caramel. Yum!

We're so glad we found this place and we cannot wait to go back and explore the area further, walking alongside the river and the Lac de Guerlédan.

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