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Becherel travel guide

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Visit Becherel (Brittany, France)

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Becherel is known as the "Village of Books" as it has 15 or so bookstores located in the village. It also has a monthly book market. As well as books it is a picturesque village perched above the surrounding countryside and with some pretty views.

The village is about 35 kilometres north-west of Rennes and Becherel is listed as one of France's "petite cités de caractére", a distinction given to small towns with an interesting architectural heritage.

Explore Becherel

Becherel sits at an altitude of 176 meters and commands a view over the surrounding countryside. It was originally the location of a fort, built in the 12th century of which some vestiges still remain. The fort fell into disuse and disrepair and with it the fortunes of the village. New prosperity arrived in the 16-18th centuries with the production of linen and hemp although this industry suffered with the arrival of cheap cotton.

These days the village has reinvented itself as a book market and tourist town.

half-timber building in Becherel

The main square at the centre of Becherel is surrounded by a selection of stone buildings. Slate roofs and painted window frames add to the charm. The Logis de la Flanderie is a particularly noteworthy building being the only half-timber building on the square: it has an attractive mansard roof with 3 dormer windows, dates back to the 16th century and has recently been renovated.

Behind the main square the 17th century church sits at one end of a small square which also has some remaining ramparts and the ancient dungeon on one side of it. You can walk up here to get some views over the square.

At the side of the church be sure to follow the signs to the panoramic viewpoint from where you get some lovely views over the surrounding countryside.

Throughout the town there are a number of book shops making the town a book-lovers paradise. On the first Sunday of each month there is also a book market.

Add to this events taking place in spring for the National Poetry weekend, the Fête du Livre (book fair) every Easter weekend; the reading festival in October; the 'Treasures of Becherel' festival in December and the European festival of Ancient Greek and Latin in March and you can see why Becherel has become the number one town of books in France.

Book shops in Becherel

As well as the book shops there is a good selection of art galleries, cafés and restaurants to add to the pleasure of your visit to Bécherel.

Places to Visit Nearby

The lovely medieval town of Dinan is just 22 km to the north-west of Becherel whilst the attractive town of Combourg is a similar distance to the north-east.

Rennes to the south is of course a beautiful and historic city and well worth a visit.

You can find more travel ideas in the Ille-et-Vilaine guide and the Brittany guide.

See also: 

Photos of Becherel

Click any picture to start the gallery

  • centre
  • church
  • dungeon
  • logis
  • main-square
  • ramparts

Map of Becherel and places nearby

Visit near Becherel with France This Way reviews

Chateau de Dinan

Chateau de Dinan

Dinan castle is an imposing medieval castle which also has views across the town from the ramparts

Chateau de Dinan guide
Dinan basilica of Saint-Sauveur

Dinan basilica of Saint-Sauveur

The basilica of Saint-Sauveur in Dinan incorporates romanesque elements from the 12th century and gothic elements from the 15th century

Dinan basilica of Saint-Sauveur guide
Dinan

Dinan

The extensive medieval centre of the walled town of Dinan ensure its popularity - one of our favourite Brittany towns!

Dinan guide
Combourg

Combourg

Combourg is best known for the Chateau de Combourg, once home to Chateaubriand, the romantic French author

Combourg guide
Dinan Rue du Jerzual

Dinan Rue du Jerzual

The Rue du Jerzual and the port are two of the most picturesque areas in Dinan

Dinan Rue du Jerzual guide
Dinan church of Saint-Malo

Dinan church of Saint-Malo

The Church of Saint-Malo in Dinan is a large 15th century church with interesting architectural features

Dinan church of Saint-Malo guide

... or see ALL recommended places to visit in Ille-et-Vilaine

Address: Bécherel, Rennes, Brittany, 35190, France || GPS coordinates: latitude 48.296111, longitude -1.943889

Plan your visit to Becherel, Ille-et-Vilaine

Sightseeing & tourist attractions to visit nearby

  • Parc du château de Caradeuc: remarkable garden
  • Saint-Juvat: ville fleurie 4* (10 km)
  • Jardins du château de la Bourbansais: remarkable garden (12 km)
  • Bedee: village d'etape (13 km)
  • Dinan: recommended detour (19 km)
  • Étangs du canal d'Ille-et-Rance: site of natural beauty (23 km)
  • Le Rheu: ville fleurie 4* (24 km)
  • Rennes: town of art and history (28 km)
  • Jardins de Broceliande: remarkable garden (28 km)
  • Abbaye Notre-Dame du Nid-au-Merle: site of natural beauty (29 km)
  • Estuaire de la Rance: site of natural beauty (29 km)
  • Forêt de Rennes: site of natural beauty (30 km)

The French version of this page is at Becherel (Francais)

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