Some of the best and most interesting places we’ve visited, haven’t been on any schedule or plan. We saw a sign for the Abbaye De Beauport near Paimpo and decided to stop, so of course we missed the tiny drive and small cloistered arch way entrance and drove back.
The Abbey was built in the 13th Century as a monastery and is now the property of the Conservatoire du Littoral and hosts art exhibits and concerts and historical tours. Especially interesting to us is that the Beauport Abbey was a starting point to Santiago De Compostela for the pilgrims coming from England.
Located on 100 acres the Abbey overlooks lush fields with grazing sheep, rolling down to a sheltered bay. You can see Ile de Brehat from here. It is still a working farm. In its day it was a large trading center. Today there is a little village outside the Abbey walls and you can find restaurants serving crepes and other tourist fare.
All through Normandy and Brittany hydrangeas were in bloom in cottage gardens, along the roadside and at monasteries – true reds and deep mauves turning to pinks to whites as they age.
While gardeners can add lime to get pink hydrangea the true reds and deep mauves are only possible in colder climates and so we don’t see them in the American South.