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“A happy return”
Review of Breton Bikes

Breton Bikes
Ranked #1 of 3 things to do in Gouarec
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Attraction details
Owner description: Established in 1989 Breton Bikes provides unique cycle camping and hotel based cycling holidays in Brittany - France. Real touring bikes, superb equipment, wonderful places to see and very family friendly. Routes suitable for all ages and abilities. Come and see why Brittany is a Mecca for cycle touring.
Saffron Walden, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
18 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“A happy return”
Reviewed June 28, 2014

Thirteen years ago I brought my (then thirteen year old) son on a week's tour with Breton Bikes. Our reports were so glowing that my wife has wanted to experience a tour and we have just completed not just one, but two weeks touring. We have been given a wonderful time, camping along the way. Geoff produced us a tour to the Isle de Brehat on the north coast and then to Port Manech in the south. Both were delightful. In fact it would be true to say that the two times we came unstuck were when we thought we could do better and went off piste - but the whole of Breton Bike's organised recommendations were excellent. Small, quiet lanes and campsites in beautiful places.
Our thanks go to Kate and Geoff.

Visited June 2014
Thank ShaneR297
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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58 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Oakland, CA
Level Contributor
61 reviews
25 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
“If you like to bike, consider Breton Bikes”
Reviewed June 26, 2014 via mobile

In short: do not hesitate to put yourself in Kate and Geoff's hands. They know this corner of paradise well and will make sure you have a great time.

Background: Gouarec is a deserted, beautifully tended garden spot in central Brittany. Rides can be short and flat along the Nantes Brest canal, relatively flat treks along the railway lines converted into bike paths, long and somewhat hilly out to lakes or the coast, or anywhere in between. You pass through beautifully tended farm country, medieval towns (some with terrific local eateries), lakes and forests. Roads are superb and empty -- you get the impression that like rural areas everywhere, young people in Brittany head for the cities.

BB rents bikes, gites (cabins), and tours -- either camping or B&B hosted. The bikes are very good mountain bikes, well set up, crisp shifters,with Carradice bags -- some of the finest panniers made. Ours had hub generated lights that were not hooked up, but since it was light until 11 pm in June, they did not need to be.

My wife and our sons, 18 and 21, rented the Quarry Gite and did day rides from Gouarec. The Gite is as described -- a basic cabin that sleeps four comfortably. We cooked meals in the kitchen, appreciated the clothes washer, and found the beds delightful after a day of riding and eating. Main suggestion: add wifi. It's great to research local towns and places to eat (there are better and worse restaurants in every town. In Gouarec, the Creperie was excellent and the pizza place was not).

My second suggestion (to France, not to Geoff or Kate) would be for restaurants to keep longer hours! This is hardly a problem confined to Brittany, but you cannot get food served in rural France between 2 and 6pm. Plan your rides to eat on French time -- or bing along plenty of food!

Geoff's ride sheets are great -- we literally never once missed a turn. His descriptions of the rides are conservative: a 1.2 km "steep" hill was a 1.2km climb, with 200m of 7-9% grade at the start -- the rest was gentle 3-5% grade. (This hill was one of the few times I had to drop into my small chainring "granny gears". I'm 61 and my sons now beat me to the top of any serious hill). The Creperie in Saint Brigitte, advertised by Geoff as the best in Brittany, did not disappoint.

If you have problems, with a bike or with the gite, Kate or Geoff will fix it quickly. They had just added a new water heater to our gite, and it needed some adjustments. Kate and Geoff made sure that we never missed a shower. They live nearby, have been at this for 25 years, and know the territory intimately.

Finally, check their website at www.bretonbikes.com. It could use some design help, bit the descriptions of the rides and the details of their service are long and specific. Breton Bikes is a great value and a wonderful host for a great vacation.

Visited June 2014
2 Thank MTMusings
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
“Short break”
Reviewed May 3, 2014

Good base at the gite v quiet village good bike rides ,tandem is fun would recommend ! Creperie in the village is cool , beers in the tabac are great too!

Visited April 2014
Thank Simon C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Well-supported, fun and good value family holiday.”
Reviewed April 21, 2014

My wife and I took our three kids on a one week gite holiday with Breton Bikes this April. Our children were 6, 5 and 1. The gite is basic but comfortable. Although it requires a little maintenance it lacked nothing that we needed. The bikes were well prepared - right down to seat height adjustments having been made in advance. We had no bike trouble at all the whole week. We didn't know how our two eldest would cope so Geoff had left them each a single bike as well as providing trail-alongs and tandems. Comprehensive instructions for more than a week's cycling routes were provided and even though the on-road cycling was easy because of limited traffic we found enough off-road routes to keep us occupied for five of the six non-raining days. Each route had something of interest to see or do and the instructions pointed out very clearly what days of the week suited each, to deal with The unpredictability of French opening times, among other things. Details about attractions like neolithic ruins that I hadn't read about in any guide book were particularly valuable. The scenery through which we cycled was bucolic and beautiful. However, perhaps because it was out of season(?) some of the local businesses that were recommended were not open even at the times indicated - even the times indicated on the door of the relevant establishment - although we found that such unpredictability was not restricted to Brittany. French opening hours (or the lack thereof) came as quite a surprise. When we weren't cycling, the gite was a perfect base from which to explore Brittany - everything else we wanted to see seemed to be 1.25 hours' drive away, so we could cycle and sightsee every day, and do full sightseeing days when it rained. The only real issue we had with the whole week was a lack of Internet - it would have paid to have set up a local mobile account before coming because there's no internet at the gite and I don't think there's any public wifi in Gouarec - but perhaps that's an attraction to some. I would recommend this holiday to anyone with an active young family.

Visited April 2014
2 Thank September_77
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
geoff h, Owner at Breton Bikes, responded to this review, April 23, 2014
Thanks for the lovely review - Brittany certainly did pull all the stops out for you that week - the weather was glorious! The handymen are in next week to make sure doors shut properly etc - the legacy of a flood we had a month ago (being by the canal isn't always an advantage)...
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chelmsford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
16 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
“Fantastic Family Holiday”
Reviewed October 2, 2013

Myself, husband and 12 year old daughter spent two weeks with Breton Bikes this summer. We did a week on a hotel tour and then a week in their smaller gite in Gouarec.
It was simply one of the best holidays we have ever had. We are an active family so chose to do the On the Beach route which is described as one of the more challenging. I then proceeded to panic about covering the distance (thanks for your patience there, Kate and Geoff) but when it came to it we had no difficulties and were glad we had pushed ourselves. In fact the only problem was trying to keep up with our 12 year old daughter on the hills. By the end of the second week we were covering up to 50 miles a day without any problems. The weather for the beginning of our first week wasn't great but we found cycling in the rain strangely enjoyable and it made the rest stops even more fun. Traffic in the areas we were in was very minimal, even near the coast, and the French drivers were more than considerate. The food along the way and in the towns we stayed in was of excellent quality and good value. Being on B and B basis was ideal as we could eat where and when we wanted.
During the second week, we had a tandem as well as the three touring bikes and it was fun to mix and match.
The support was excellent. Routes were well chosen and scenic. We loved the beach at Le Pouldu. On the one occasion that there was a problem with my bike, Geoff was there within an hour to carry out the repairs. The gite was basic but comfortable and we liked the fact that there was no television. There was a radio tuned to receive coverage of test match cricket which was very thoughtful and much appreciated by my husband.
Overall this was a brilliant experience and one which we will definitely choose to repeat.
Many thanks to Kate, Geoff and family.

Visited August 2013
2 Thank Murphy939
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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