©Alexandre Lamoureux
The salt road, from Redon to Le CroisicBetween the land and the marshes, along the Vilaine
Trip idea

The salt road, from Redon to Le Croisic

From the salt stores in Redon to the Guérande salt marshes, via La Roche-Bernard, a former trading place, follow the Breton “white gold” trail.

Suggestion for break in
3 days

At a glance

A holiday with an abundance of salt! We’re talking about the salt collected in the Guérande salt marshes. This precious “white gold” was once transported from Le Croisic port to the salt stores in Redon. Make the same journey, backwards, along the peaceful Vilaine river. On the way, stop in the picturesque town of La Roche-Bernard, a former trading port for this once flourishing business. And don’t forget to taste this Guérande salt: it’s the best!

Wander around Redon to discover the old port and the salt stores

Start the day where it all began: at the Benedictine abbey of Saint-Sauveur de Redon. The building, around which the port town developed, played a major role in the rise of the Guérande salt marshes. A large part of the Guérande salt marshes actually belonged to the Benedictine monks at one time. Note the Romanesque tower of the abbey, with its little arches and columns in red sandstone and granite.  Magnificent!
Then head to the Vilaine and take time to stroll around the old port. This is where the boats that travelled up the estuary used to dock, laden with salt produced in Guérande.
Along Quai Duguay-Trouin, discover the beautiful shipowners’ which bear witness to this important traffic. Just like the former salt stores. Don’t hesitate to open the doors!

  • Go for an atypical walk in the bowels of Redon: accessible as a guided tour in the summer, the underground of Saint-Sauveur abbey leads to the foot of the remparts, on Quai Saint-Jacques.
  • Why don’t you rise to the “Challenges of the Oust”? Leaving from Redon, hop on a bike and travel alongside the Nantes-Brest canal to Ile aux Pies (from May to September). Suitable for the family.

A quick stop in La Roche-Bernard, then direction Guérande

After a good breakfast, continue to La Roche-Bernard. Built on a granite spur, this “Small town of character” dominates the Vilaine. The river and the town have seen many goods ships pass through!
Stroll through the old neighbourhoods to soak up this trading past. In particular, be sure to visit Rue de la Saulnerie, lined with former stores and warehouses where Baron de La Roche-Bernard stored the salt he received by way of taxes. You’ll arrive on the old port, where a few examples of old sailing boats are moored. It’s a fine fleet indeed!
In the afternoon, set off to discover Guérande, the town of salt par excellence. Take time to stroll around the streets within the walls, to visit the church, etc. A handy hint? Go around the outside of the town to admire the beauty of its ramparts.

  • Potter, bead jewellery-maker, stained glass artist, glass spinner… Around a dozen craftsmen and craftswomen exercise their talent in the old neighbourhoods of La Roche-Bernard. Watch them at work, in their workshops.
  • From April to October, make the most of a guided tour of Guérande. There are many themes to choose from: the town’s history, its hidden heritage, the church bell tower, etc. Children can hunt treasure and dragons!

In the salt marshes, the source of “white gold”

This morning, head to the salt marshes, to the source of “white gold”! First stop at Maison des Paludiers: an exhibition, a visit of a saltwork and meeting with professionals will help you to understand the secrets of this ancient know-how. Then connect the salt worker villages in Batz-sur-Mer: Kervalet, Trégaté, Kermoisan and Roffiat. Don’t miss the Salt marsh Museum!
Then, head to Le Croisic Following siltation of the strait, depriving Guérande from all transport activity, it was here that Breton salt began its long journey to Great Britain and Northern Europe.
Stroll around the port’s docks and the cobbled streets of this almost insular “Small town of character”. The many half-timbered houses and granite mansion houses make it look like a period film setting!

  • Facing Pointe de Pen Bron, Le Croisic port marks the entry of the Grand Traict, the gateway of the sea to the Guérande salt marshes.
  • For those with sea legs, from May to September, Le Galipétant crosses Pointe de Pen Bron and Le Croisic and organises boat outings in the strait!

We like

  • Marvelling at the mosaic of shapes and colours of the Guérande salt marshes and meeting the salt workers, heirs and guardians of this fragile and vulnerable heritage.
  • Following the wooded banks of the Vilaine, from Redon to Le Croisic. Admiring, from the site of the rock of La Roche-Bernard, an exceptional view of the river. It’s even more beautiful at sunset!

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