Made up of 8 main islands with a total area of 144 hectares of land, the Glénan archipelago experienced various fortunes. Housing only a few souls at certain times, there were 85 inhabitants at its peak in 1881: all fishermen, seaweed farmers or caustic soda makers.
Today, the archipelago, several of which are private or classified as ornithological reserves, is no longer inhabited except in summer, and almost entirely devoted to water sports. Besides the most famous sailing school, it houses an international scuba diving center.
Ideal for a day of idleness and total change of scenery, Saint Nicolas Island is a must-see destination in the region, very busy in summer, much less in June and September.
Most companies offer a departure in the morning, a stopover of about 3 hours to go around Saint Nicolas Island, to eat and enjoy the beaches, and a return in the afternoon. The water is cool, but if you bring a little snorkel gear you can see sea urchins and small fish easily. There is no connection between the different islands. The Vedettes de l’Odet offer the kayak rental from the sea to freely explore the archipelago.
During the crossing, it is not uncommon to spot dolphins and whale sharks offshore.
It is better to avoid very hot days because there are almost no shaded areas, and to provide sunscreen and water to hydrate.
If you want to fully enjoy your excursion to the Glénan Islands, we recommend that you opt for a commented crossing which will allow you to discover the fauna, flora and history of the place.
In a trip it is not the destination that counts but always the distance traveled, and especially the detours.
Several companies offer the crossing. Depending on your budget and your desires, 3 choices are available to you: cruise ships, the crossing in a semi-rigid boat with commentary or the day trip with a professional skipper.
From mid April to mid-September,The Odet star, which offers departures from Concarneau and Bénodet. We recommend the “discovery of the archipelago” formula: After a free stopover on the main island of Saint Nicolas, you re-embark for an hour of commented cruise to discover the archipelago.
In summer, two departures per day are planned from Port la Forêt , 20 min by foot or 5 min by car from the campsite. The price of the discovery formula is 46 € per adult (2020 price).
Blue cruises also allows you to embark from mid-May to the end of September for a formula including the crossing, 3 hours of stopovers for lunch on the island and a cruise commented by a passionate guide to discover the history of the islands accompanied by anecdotes. In July and August departures are from Concarneau and Fouesnant . Price for 1 adult: 34 €
Glénan Discovery offers an interesting alternative to large cruise ships with a departure from the port of Trévigon (10 minutes from the campsite), for 40 € per adult on a semi-rigid boat with 12 places. You can set sail and reach the archipelago in just 20 minutes, then navigate between the different islands with a commented tour of ten minutes before reaching the island of St Nicolas. After a stopover of about 3:00 to walk, picnic and enjoy the scenery, the return is scheduled in the afternoon. With Les Saules campsite, and upon presentation of proof, benefit from a € 2 reduction on each place. To book : 06 70 75 89 79 / firstname.lastname@example.org
To discover the archipelago and old-fashioned navigation, reserve your place on board the Popoff, an old wooden trawler built in 1946. If you wish, you can participate in the maneuvers and have a picnic on board or ashore. Price for an adult: 59 €
Finally, if you want to discover the Glénans beyond the beaten track, the ideal is to go for the day with a skipper who will show you the archipelago and navigation on a sailing boat. You can eat on board and enjoy this exceptional moment at your own pace.
The site Skippair.com allows you to book online a all-inclusive day cruise in Les Glénan or a sailing day departing from Port-la-forêt. It is an ideal formula with family or friends that allows you to discover the pleasure of sailing on a monohull or on a catamaran in a privileged setting. (count around 100 € / person)
Another possibility for an excursion to Glénans “A la carte”: KYSS offers a personalized one-day cruise around the 7 Glenan Islands aboard a semi-rigid at € 400 for 2 to 6 passengers.
In summer, it is better to take a picnic because the two restaurants on the island of Saint Nicolas are quickly saturated. There is no shortage of regional products (canned sardines, tuna or pâté) for a successful meal on the beach. Please note: there is no trash, remember to bring something to bring back your waste).
– “Les Viviers des Glénan” at Castric (seafood restaurant) 02 98 50 68 90
– “La Boucane” (brasserie, snack bar) 02 98 50 69 00