Roscoff is a charming fishing town located in Bretagne, France. Its streets are filled with 16th century granite buildings. Here you’ll find some great restaurants and small art galleries. You can try some delicious seafood and eat some traditional Breton crêpes.
You can also experiment with its famous thalassotherapy – rejuvenating and healing therapies that involve the therapeutic use of seawater and sea products.
But what to do, where to stay and where to dine in Roscoff? Read on to find out everything you need to know about this lovely little seaside town.
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How to get to Roscoff?
The nearest airport to Roscoff is Brest – Guipavas Airport. The distance between Brest Airport (BES) and Roscoff is 45 km. You can drive from the airport, which will take around 45 minutes. Alternatively, you can take a train and then a bus from the airport to Roscoff or you can take a couple of buses to get here.
If you’re coming by public transport, it’s important to know that the nearest TGV stations are those of Morlaix and Brest. From these two stations, you can take a bus to Roscoff. The main bus that takes you to Roscoff is line 29.
If you’re coming from the UK, you can easily get to Roscoff from Plymouth. Here you can catch the ferry which takes 5 and a half hours in total. There are also ferries from Bilbao (Spain) and Cork (Ireland).
Is Roscoff worth visiting?
Roscoff is definitely worth visiting. It has a certain rustic charm to it. The fishing village is really picturesque and is the perfect place to go to relax.
When to visit Roscoff?
The best time to visit Roscoff is from May to September, when the weather is at its best. Because Roscoff is not yet completely filled with tourists in the summer, I still recommend going there during the summer months.
How many days in Roscoff?
You can visit Roscoff for a few days, however if you want to truly relax I would say that you can easily spend at least a week in Roscoff. There are so many great restaurants to explore, but there are also really nice sandy beaches in the area and other things to do.
What to do in Roscoff?
Even though Roscoff is quite small (only 6.19 km2), there are a couple of great things to do during your holiday in Roscoff:
Visit the Jardin Exotique de Roscoff
If you love to visit botanical gardens, you should definitely visit the Jardin Exotique de Roscoff. The entrance fee is around 6 euros per person. If you have two hours to spare, you should really visit this botanical garden. The garden is home to more than 3000 different plants.
When you’re wandering around it almost feels like you’re in Spain or Portugal, because of all the exotic plants and trees. It’s located ten minutes by foot from the centre.
Visit Eglise Notre-Dame de Croaz-Batz
Roscoff is home to a Gothic style church named Eglise Notre-Dame de Croaz-Batz. This church was founded at the beginning of the 16th century. The interior of the church is impressive, filled with artifacts and illuminations. If you’re interested in history or churches, you should definitely visit this church.
Visit Ile de Batz
The Île de Batz is an island off Roscoff. The ferry from Roscoff takes 15 minutes to reach this small yet charming island. At the time of writing, a return ticket for this ferry costs 10 euros per person.
On Ile de Batz you’ll also find an exotic botanical garden called Georges Delaselle Garden. The garden is very well maintained and worth visiting. Currently, the entrance fee is 6 euros per person.
Walk to the Roscoff Lighthouse
Go on a walk to the lighthouse. The lighthouse is located on the Vieux Port Roscoff, is 24 meters high and has 95 steps. The construction of the lighthouse began in 1914 and was finished in 1917. Walk past the harbor, the restaurants, the shops and admire the scenic views. Stroll through the streets of the Old Town and look at all the granite houses.
Visit the beaches in Roscoff
Roscoff is surrounded by many beautiful beaches. Plage de Roc’h Kroum is the main beach. It’s a supervised beach and has many facilities, such as toilets, a car park, a shower, a restaurant and a rescue station.
More lovely beaches in the area worth exploring include La Grande Grève, Plage de Perharidy and Plage du Traon Erc’h. Especially Plage du Traon Erc’h is a hidden gem. This quiet beach is very pretty and worth visiting.
Another beach worth exploring nearby is Plage Saint-Anne. It’s a nice sandy beach great for swimming and it has a tidal pool.
In Santec, a little further away, you’ll also find a very beautiful sandy beach called Plage du Dossen. It’s around a fifteen minute drive from Roscoff. From this beach you can (depending on the tides) walk to an island called Ile de Sieck.
Plage du Dossen is also a great beach for surfing. Check the tide times in advance, as surfing will be the best during high tides. There’s also a nice crêperie near the beach, called O’Doss.
If you want to visit one of the most magnificent beaches in the area, head to Plage des Amiets. This sandy beach is magical and definitely worth exploring. Especially the turquoise color of the water is what makes this beach worth going to. It’s less than half an hour by car from the centre of Roscoff.
Last but not least, next to Plage des Amiets you’ll find a wonderful sandy beach called Plage de Kerfissien. This beach has fine white sand and crystal clear water. It’s without a doubt one of the most gorgeous beaches in the area.
Wander around Presqu’île de Perharidy
Presqu’île de Perharidy is a beautiful nature reserve worth visiting. It’s a great place to go for a long walk. Depending on the tides, you might have to partly walk in water. You can easily wander around this nature reserve for an hour or two hours and you won’t get bored, as the scenery is stunning. It’s located very near to Roscoff and is especially a good place to visit for nature lovers.
Visit the market in Saint-Pol-de-Léon
On Tuesday, you can visit the market in the city centre of Saint-Pol-de-Léon. It’s best to visit the market in the morning. Saint-Pol-de-Léonis a charming nearby village worth exploring.
It has a little more than 7000 residents and is located less than 10 minutes away from Roscoff by car. In this historical village you can also visit some beautiful cathedrals, such as the Saint Paul Aurélien Cathedral.
Go on a day trip to Morlaix
Morlaix is a charming town worth visiting on a day trip from Roscoff. It’s around a 30-minute drive away. It has a certain artist vibe to it and is home to many wall paintings.
One of the highlights of Morlaix is its viaduct. If you’re interested in history, you should definitely visit La Maison à pondalez, Musée de Morlaix, a unique architectural heritage in Morlaix.
If you want to go shopping during your stay in Roscoff, visiting Morlaix is also a good idea.
Another one of my personal favorite things to do here is to visit Madame Monsieur Bonjour, a really cute shop / cafe / restaurant. It truly is a hidden gem in Morlaix.
Best places to stay in Roscoff
There are a couple of amazing places to stay here. The best places to stay include the following:
Hotel Le Temps de Vivre
If you want to stay in a clean hotel in a quiet area, yet only a short walk away from the port, then Hotel Le Temps de Vivre would be ideal for you.
Hotel Mercure Roscoff Bord De Mer
For a hotel with stunning seaside views, stay at Hotel Mercure Roscoff Bord De Mer. The service is very good and the hotel offers a 24-hours reception. It’s located in the old part of town and is surrounded by restaurants and cafes. Click here to view their latest prices and more.
Duplex magnifique vue mer idéalement situé Roscoff
You might prefer to stay in an apartment. If that’s the case, then I would highly recommend staying at this apartment. It’s spacious and located within 600 meters of the main beach. The best part of this apartment is its terrace overlooking the sea.
Relais & Châteaux Le Brittany & Spa
For an authentic stay at a luxurious hotel, stay at Relais & Chateaux Le Brittany & Spa. This beautiful hotel is home to an indoor swimming pool and has a spa. It also has a restaurant with a Michelin-star. If you stay here, you’ll have direct access to the beach. This hotel is the true meaning of hospitality. Click here to view their prices and more.
The best restaurants in Roscoff
Although Roscoff is only small, there are many excellent restaurants in the area. It can be really hard to choose where to dine, as there are so many options. That’s why I’ve made this list filled with great restaurants in the area. Some of the best restaurants include the following:
- L’Ecume des Jours: for delicious French cuisine
- La Moule Au Pot: for mussels
- Les Korrigans: for excellent seafood
- Hotel Brittany & Spa: for a Michelin-star restaurant
- Le Brise Lames: for local culinary delights
- Creperie Ti Saozon: for lovely crepes
- Restaurant le Bistrot de la mer: for authentic homemade dinner
- La Baie d’Halong: for Vietnamese food
- Le Local: for fresh food and vegetarian options
- Les Bricoles: for a fancy dinner
- Creperie O’Doss: for crepes near the sea
- Beach Break: for a cosy lunch by the sea (@Plage du Dossen)
Here you’ll find the most frequently asked questions answered.
What is Roscoff known for?
Roscoff is known for its picturesque architecture. The quaint town is labelled petite cité de caractère de Bretagne, small town of character, since 2009.
Besides, it’s a traditional departure point for Onion Johnnies. Onion Johnnies were Breton farmers and labourers who travelled on bicycles selling pink onions door to door in Great Britain.
Roscoff is also known for its thalassotherapy, a healing therapy which includes working with seawater and sea products. In 1899, a French doctor named Louis-Eugène Bagot, opened the Institut Marin in Roscoff. This was the first centre for thalassotherapy in Europe.
What area of France is Roscoff?
Roscoff is situated on the north coast of Bretagne (English name: Brittany).
How long is the ferry crossing from Plymouth to Roscoff?
The daytime ferry takes 5 hours and 30 minutes from Plymouth to Roscoff. An overnight crossing takes around 9-11 hours. These ferry services are operated by Brittany Ferries.
Roscoff is a seaside town worth exploring. It’s truly a hidden gem located in Bretagne, France. Even though it’s small, you can easily spend at least a week here.
You can visit beautiful sandy beaches in the area, you can visit Ile de Batz island and you can explore more than 3000 plants at its botanical garden.
If you’re a foodie, then Roscoff is the place for you. There are so many good restaurants here that it can be hard to choose where to dine.
Have you ever been to Roscoff or are you thinking of going there? Let me know in the comments!
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