Rennes-Marché des LicesRennes-Marché des Lices
©Rennes-Marché des Lices |Julia Lassner, Globusliebe

Marché des Lices in Rennes, 400th anniversary

 Every Saturday morning for four centuries, the Marchés des Lices has been at the heart of life in Rennes, the capital of Brittany. Since 1622, locals and visitors have strolled the alleys of the renowned food market which sees 300 or so traders set up their stalls in the Place des Lices, and attracts around 10,000 shoppers and tourists each week. A joyous crowd of Chefs doing their shopping for their restaurants, grannies with trolleys, early birds and night owls, families, friends, and visitors. The Marché des Lices is one the oldest but also the second largest food market France and the largest outside of Paris. Events are planned throughout 2022, with food tours throughout the city, themed tours of the Market, as well as sound and street art installations.

Saturday morning warm-up: the run to the pavement cafes

A wild ride through Breton history between crooked half-timbered houses and stately town villas define the architecture of the square, but also the abundance of market stalls: artichokes, sea salt butter, oysters, fish and seafood of all kinds have always been the essence and export hits of Brittany. At the Marché des Lices you will find fresh local products and Breton culinary specialities, sometimes in the most modern creations. Saturday morning sport in Rennes is the run to the pavement cafes around the square. After all, what could be nicer than opening the weekend with your fresh purchases of baguettes, cheese and oysters sitting in the sun with
friends? Simply order a drink, chopping boards and knives are provided free of charge for everyone – enjoy music and dance by street artists on the square. Soak in the atmosphere. The weekend starts now.  For the full gourmet experience, sign up for a guided tour or a cooking class with Destination Rennes

 Breton Hot Dogs & Queen of Butter

‘Galette Saucisse’ – the Breton take on hot-dog – is timeless and a real classic for any Breton person: French bratwurst style sausage, wrapped in a galette, the hearty buckwheat sister of the Breton crêpe, with a dollop of mustard. Freshly made on order in the food trucks, the Galette Saucisse is a tradition to any visit to the Marché des Lices. If you would like to try your hands at Breton cuisine, the Saturday baking course “Kouign Amann” – pronounced like the Queen – is the place just for you. Translated, the Breton name simply means butter cake, and that’s sms up well its ess – of course, using Breton sea salt butter.

 Gastronomy in Rennes: sustainable and for everyone

As one of five French cities, Rennes was awarded the “Destination Innovante Durable” label in April 2022 for its innovative ideas of reconciling city life
and tourism in an environmentally and socially responsible way. And indeed, Rennes surprises again and again with open, modern concepts for mobility,
art and culture for everyone. The street art scene in Rennes is constantly reinventing itself, new artworks are always surprising on windows, walls and hidden between the gables of the half-timbered houses. Speaking of art: Poetry Slam city tours are certainly a special kind of highlight for anyone who speaks good French. The “Nourriture Rennes” association, founded in 2021 by 23 restaurants owners, is committed to sustainable gastronomy in Rennes – with fair trade conditions as well as local and seasonal products. In addition to the autumn food festival “Goûts de Rennes” (Flavours from Rennes), there is the street food festival “Marché à manger” (Market to eat) every first Sunday of the month, where the members of the “Nourriture Rennes” initiative also introduce their new dishes transformed in street food.


 Market-hopping in Brittany: from the oldest seaside resort to the largest fishing port in France

Charming inland villages, seaside resorts or fishing ports: in Brittany, every town’s market has its very own charm: Dinard, a chic ‘Belle-Epoque’ seaside
resort, where Pablo Picasso spent his summer months, it’s market day every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. On Saturday the open-air top-of-the-range market gets bigger with additional stalls. Kids will love the vintage carrousel and the tricycle pedal car horse race just outside the market. As the largest fishing port in France, the daily fish market in Lorient in southern Brittany is – of course – all about the ocean. And if you’re looking for something on a smaller scale, head to the small towns of Questembert and Saint-Renan inland Brittany. The superb 16th century market halls in Questembert, return to their original purpose on Monday mornings – a great stopover when you’re visiting Brittany.


Getting there

  • From Paris Montparnasse, allow 1 hour 30 minutes to get to Rennes by train.
  • From St-Malo, where Brittany Ferries sail to, it’s only a 1-hour drive. It takes just about the same time if you travel by train.
  • New in 2022 : Easyjet has opened a new direct route from London-Gatwick to Rennes. With up to 5 flights a week until the end of October 2022, it’s easy to hop to Rennes for a weekend or a longer break.

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Official website of tourism in Brittany