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iStock/Cécile Haupas
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Dol-de-Bretagne – an astonishing old Breton religious capital

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Situated between Saint-Malo and the Mont-Saint-Michel, Dol-de-Bretagne is the most astonishing medieval town and an old Breton religious capital. This town is one of the first bishoprics in Brittany, as well as a place where you can find the Saint Samson of Dol relics. But, the important religious past and the most splendid Gothic cathedral is not all that Dol-de-Bretagne can offer to its visitors. Its narrow streets and old medieval houses will captivate you. This town is also worldwide known as a place where you can visit the largest standing stone in Brittany.

Dol-de-Bretagne, Brittany
Dol-de-Bretagne, Brittany
35120 Dol-de-Bretagne, France

History of Dol-de-Bretagne

Dol-de-Bretagne became in the 6th century one of the first bishoprics in Brittany, and it was also an important Breton medieval pilgrimage place. Saint Samson of Dol, its first bishop, was also one of the 7 founder saints of Brittany. Today, his relics can be found in the Saint-Samson Cathedral. This Gothic cathedral, listed as a French historical monument in 1840, is the most intriguing place in Dol-de-Bretagne. Even if it was damaged during the French revolution, this cathedral is definitely worth visiting. Stendhal, a French writer, known for its novel "Le Rouge et le Noir" ("The Red and the Black") described it as "one of the most remarkable works of Gothic architecture". Don't be surprised to hear that one of the beautiful medieval streets is called "La Grande-Rue-des-Stuarts". Dol-de-Bretagne is also reputed as a birthplace of the  Stuarts; the monarchs of Scotland and England were initially from Brittany.

The Saint-Samson Cathedral, Dol-de-Bretagne
The Saint-Samson Cathedral, Dol-de-Bretagne
Place de la Cathédrale, 35120 Dol-de-Bretagne, France

Narrow streets of Dol

One of the things you will especially enjoy in Dol-de-Bretagne is strolling around its medieval, narrow streets. You can see so many interesting shops, bars, and restaurants located in the old, medieval, half-timbered houses. One of them is from the 12th century, and it is listed as the oldest house in Brittany. In the main street, you can also spot a statue representing Victor Hugo, one of the most famous French writers. He loved this town, and he even stayed here several times. After your visit, you can take a break in the restaurant Katedral. This establishment has a great terrace with the most beautiful view of the Saint-Samson Cathedral, and it is perfect for a lunch break. Make sure to try a galette, a pancake made of buckwheat. This dish is a local specialty.

©  Sladjana Perkovic
© Sladjana Perkovic
Le Katedral, Dol-de-Bretagne
Le Katedral, Dol-de-Bretagne
4 Place de la Trésorerie, 35120 Dol-de-Bretagne, France

The Menhir de Champ-Dolent

Dol-de-Bretagne is an astonishing old Breton religious capital, also known as a place where you can visit the Menhir de Champ-Dolent. Located in a field, some 2 kilometers south of the city center and listed as a French historical monument in 1889, this is the largest standing stone in Brittany. This menhir is such an important place that you shouldn't miss the opportunity to make a stop here when visiting Brittany and Dol-de-Bretagne.

Menhir de Champ-Dolent, Dol-de-Bretagne
Menhir de Champ-Dolent, Dol-de-Bretagne
35120 Dol-de-Bretagne, France

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The author

Sladjana Perkovic

Sladjana Perkovic

Hello, my name is Sladjana, a journalist and writer living in Paris, France. I write about French well hidden places, gastronomy and cultural events.

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