Rennes is the capital and main town of Brittany. A lot of people think it’s Nantes, and it’s true that Nantes was the regional capital until the 1950s. It’s also true that the castle of the Dukes of Brittany is in Nantes and it’s also true that a lot of people in Nantes want to see Nantes reinstated as what they see as the larger city’s rightful place as the Breton capital. In the meantime, however, it’s Rennes.
Rennes is doing very nicely, thank you, and I’m sure they’d have something to say about losing their status as a regional capital if that day were ever to come. Like Nantes, it’s buzzing happening sort of place that has shot up the rankings of desirable cities to live in France.The size of the place is quite modest by French standards. Officially, the population stands at just over 200,000, making it somewhere between the size of Cork and Belfast.
Its star market is also one of the star markets of Brittany itself. The Marché des Lices is located in the heart of the old town and is considered by many both within and without Rennes as France’s second-best food market. Specialities include galette-saucisse pancake/crepe, the melon petit-gris and the cutely-named and equally delicious Breton chicken the coucou de Rennes
Over 300 food and flower producers come from all parts of Brittany to take up their sought-after slots every Saturday. The market is open to the public from 07:30 until 13:30. The market has been a regular feature of Rennes life since 1622 and attracts about 10,000 visitors every week.
View Larger Map