©Alexandre Lamoureux
Visit VannesMultiple pleasures
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Visit Vannes

There is so much to do in Vannes, the capital of Morbihan. It’s a marina, a fortified town, a medieval town, a Town of Art and History, and so on. With tree-lined quays and 15th-century houses, the vibe is cheerful and positive. Come and soak up the atmosphere!

The Gulf as a backdrop

The Gallo-Roman town of Darioritum became Vannes (in Breton, Gwened, “the white one”) with the arrival of the Celts. Tucked away at the back of the Gulf of Morbihan, protected by its ramparts, it flourished.  The port trade, its religious and political power are illustrated in the half-timbered houses and mansion houses. Today, this rich heritage makes for a happy living environment and a wonderful place for visitors to stroll.

Through the streets

The south-facing Place Gambetta, opposite the port, is like a seaside resort. Take advantage to enjoy a little break on a terrace before venturing into the old town through Saint-Vincent gateway. On the other side of the gateway, the street is lined with 17th-century buildings. Around Place des Lices, where tournaments were held in the Middle Ages, the mansion houses and half-timbered houses sit side-by-side. The brightly coloured façades in rows make a pretty sight. After the cathedral and the Cohue Fine Arts Museum, Rue Saint-Gwénaël abounds in architectural elements like lattice work and corbels as far as Porte Prison, which leads to the picturesque Saint-Patern district.

A décor specific to Vannes

From Porte Prison, you can reach Promenade de la Garenne which runs alongside the 13th-century ramparts. A harmonious succession of towers and gateways runs above the French-style gardens. Attached to the fortifications, wash houses covered with a long slate roof lean onto the Marle.

A relaxing and tasty walk

Venture outside the city walls of Vannes for a little escapade. Promenade de la Rabine follows the tree-lined alleys on the edge of the jetties. Feeling thirsty? Enjoy a beer made in Breizh in the Awen micro-brewery. Fancy a bit of jazz? Hop on board the unusual Piano Barge, a boat converted into a restaurant and jazz club! Continue the walk to the Conleau peninsula, where you will be rewarded with a superb view of the Gulf in a site where several generations of sailors meet.


Where are Vannes and his wife?

At the corner of Rue Rogue and Rue Noé, two jovial figures greet you. Sculpted in stone, they represent the master and mistress of this 16th-century house. They have become the mascots of the residents of Vannes.

Main points of interest

  • The Vannes Ramparts walkway and gardens.
  • The historic Saint-Patern quarter and church (18th century)
  • The port area
  • The walled town: the half-timbered houses and mansions, the cathedral of Saint-Pierre and its rich furnishings, ‘La Cohue’ (a medieval hall housing the Museum of Fine Arts)
  • The museum of history and archaeology (Château-Gaillard)

Information & bookings

Vannes Golfe du Morbihan Tourist Office

Plan your holiday

Getting there

Getting to Vannes

Eurostar will get you to Paris from London in 2 hours 16 minutes, then, with 11 trains a day, Vannes is 2 hours 30 minutes from Paris by TGV, France’s inter-city high-speed rail service. There are regular connections with France’s major towns and cities.

Vannes is 450 km from Paris (5hrs) on the A11 ‘Océane’ motorway, and 110 km from Nantes and Rennes by dual carriageway. From the ferry ports, it is about 2 hours’ drive from St Malo and 2 hours 30 minutes from Roscoff.

For travellers on a budget, coach services are operated by Isilines, Eurolines, Flixbus and Ouibus, departing from many towns and cities.

Travelling in and around Vannes

Vannes is a great city to explore on foot, by bus or by bike. From the station to the city centre is a 20 minute walk or a 5 minute bus ride (service operated by Kiceo. Vélocéo self-service electric bikes can be rented by the day.

For the islands of the Gulf of Morbihan, the ferry terminal is 10 minutes by bus from the city centre.

Official website of tourism in Brittany