Tuesday, 9 February 2010

ABC Wednesday - Dinan

This week's ABC goes from last weeks home waters to continental Europe and the town of
Dinan. The best way to arrive is supposed to be by boat, along the Rance, but we took the old railway viaduct which now is the N176 to arrive at the 13th century ramparts. Enter the gate,
walk down narrow cobbled street and

become surrounded by 15th and 16th century half timbered houses. Some now converted into shops selling flowers but some
just displaying flowers. This citadel of Dinan has three kilometers of wonderfully preserved late medieval houses, Romanesque and Gothic churches, enough to feed the mind but also at least 30
cafes, creperies and restaurants, together with numerous cakes shops and a most wonderful 'il gelato Italiano' shop, Le Pole Nord, selling more than 50 flavours of ice cream; what a perfect place to spend a dull showery day. No blue skies in these photos.
Despite being a tourist destination it manages to combine that with the air of a living and breathing working town. Some similar places such as Colmar seemed preserved in aspic and fully taken over by tourism, but Dinan,, possibly because its centre has no significant museum or art gallery, seems to have avoided that fate. It also has
little shops. This was shut for lunch but look at that trompe l'oeil, well we are in France.
As well as brilliant colour in the stained glass of St Sauveur church it also has a cenotaph containing the heart of the knight Bertrand du Guesclin, Eagle of Brittany, who spent much of his time fighting the English in the 100 years war. Parts of him are buried at four different locations, he may be in a bit of a pickle come The Resurrection

if it is like Stanley Spencer's Resurrection in Cookham Churchyard. But as we are surrounded by the past but amongst the living
there is still time to take the tourist train down to the river harbour or perhaps sit at the table and relax with a glass of wine.

Dash over to ABC Wednesday meme to see more words beginning with the letter D

14 comments:

Sylvia K said...

What a gorgeous old city! I would LOVE to visit there! Such wonderful history. Thanks for such great, interesting post and such terrific photos! Wonderful! Hope the rest of your week goes well!

Sylvia

photowannabe said...

Wonderful photographs and good information on the ancient town. Terrific artwork too.

Life with Kaishon said...

I love the streets! I love the architecture! And that window, well, it is just to die for!

Hildred and Charles said...

Fascinating - think of the history associated with the city. It is very beautiful, and thank you for the photos and the information.

Tumblewords: said...

Exotic place! I could imagine spending at least a few days there. The architecture is intriguing and the eateries sound wonderful.

jabblog said...

Aother very interesting post with lots of information. Dinan looks a wonderful place to visit.

Andy said...

I like your photos. They captured the closeness of the city.

Jay said...

What a lovely old town! I'd love to visit some day. I particularly love your trompe d'oeil - Gauloises! Vive la France!

On behalf of the team, thank you for taking part in ABC Wednesday this week! :)

Roger Owen Green said...

There are buildings in Albany, NY that look like the building that's off-white with the brown slats; strange.

LOVE, LOVE the stained glass, plus the other pictures.

Wish more places in the US embraced their history.

angelcel said...

Dinan is practically in my back yard and yet we've only ever wizzed by there on our way elsewhere. Your photos make me realise that we need to schedule a stop there next time. :)

Manang Kim said...

Gorgeous place. Thanks for sharing!

D is for Dad

Trubes said...

My sister lives in Dinan so I know it well.
We have travelled there via the Euro Tunnel and then motored down through Normandy, staying overnight in Honfleur then visiting Mont St Michel, stopping at a creperie for lunch ...then...Voila! Lovely lovely Dinan.
Well recommended route!

Di.

Joy said...

Sylvia - Its certainly is a place rich with history.

Photowannabe - I have a weakness for Stanley Specer and stained glass

Life with Kaishon - They are great streets just for ambling along.

Hildred & Charles - It is amazing to see these buildings in such good condition.

Tublewords - The eateries are indeed perfect, and the pastries sublime.

Jabblog - Yes for a small place there is plenty to see.

Andy - It does have those medieval twists and turns.

Jay - Its a small but quaint place, with irresistable photo opportunities, you are right the shop is wonderfully French.

Roger - I'm going to Google Albany to have a look. There was lots of stained glass, all beautiful.

Angelcel - Yes it is the sort of place that you tend to pass by on the way to somewhere else, guess why that is why the traffic is always busy. Nice to live in the area, we had a great time in that part of the world.

Manang Kim - Small and pretty.

Di - I remember you saying your sister lived there, she is so lucky, although I would probably put on about 2 stones if I did. The Honfleur trip would be a perfect day.

Mitt eget krypin said...

Many nice photos, thanks for sharing/
Ulla, Sweden
http://ladyinblue.bloggplatsen.se/