Guingamp is a magnificent old walled town, key to all aspects of Breton culture; street signs are in Breton as well as French. The C18th Central Square is filled with pavement cafes and pretty boutiques and the River Trieux attractively twists and turns throughout it. There is a large weekly market every Saturday and every August the famous Saint Loup Dance Festival takes place.
The history of this town is symbolised by three prominent features: The C15th Pierre II Chateau, La Basilique Notre Dame de Bon Secours and La Place du Centre. The Chateau belonged to the dukes of Penthievre, the Notre Dame is a chief church dating from the C14th to C16th centuries with a famous statue of the Virgin that brings pilgrimages from all over and La Place du Centre is a central square decorated by a graceful Renaissance fountain; ‘La Plomée.’
The town had several names before settling for ‘Guingamp.’ These include: ‘Wingamp, Guencamp, Wengampus and Guengampus. It then became an important working town, focusing on dairy-cattle in particular, as well as flour-milling, tanning, leather-dressing and the agriculture of wheat, fruit, oats and potatoes.
Local sports clubs offer numerous different activities, including horseriding, swimming, tennis and golf. Fishing and canoeing on the River Trieux are also popular and the seaside is nearby.
There are two major events which are a tribute Breton culture. These are the ‘Gouel ar Bugale Vreizh’ in July, which is a parade of 500 children dressed in traditional costume and the ‘Saint-Loup Festival,’ which turns Guingamp into the capital of Breton dance and music for a whole week: www.dansebretonne.com
Guingamp is also home to ‘En Avant Guingamp,’ a successful football team in Ligne 2 (the second highest league in French football) so their matches would be good to see.
Nearby ‘Amoripark’ offers fun for all the family. A family ticket (2 adults and 3 children) is 32 € and activities include water sports, theme rides and animals: www.amoripark.com. The sunset on the Pink Granite Coast is a must see: www.brittany-bretagne.com/pg/armor08.htm
Food and Drink
Oysters appear on most menus and go well with Gros Plant du Pays Nantais white wine. Brittany mussels are superb and often come in white wine or cider; dry Breton cider is excellent. Langoustines (large shellfish), scallops, crabs and lobsters are also popular dishes.
Le Relais du Roy, 42 Place du Centre, tel no: 02 96 43 76 62
La Boissière, 90 rue de l’Yser, tel no : 02 96 21 06 35
Our team of sale advisers at Sextant Properties will be happy to help you to find a property for sale in Guingamp. We have a large network of estate agents near Guingamp. All of them are registered French estate agents and speak both French and English. Whatever kind of property you are looking for: farmhouse, longere, barn, gite, B&B, country house, mill, castle or chateau, we will do our best to find a property in Guingamp matching your requirements.