Perros Guirec

Perros Guirec in the department of Cotes d'Armor is a small seaside town built of the lovely local pink granite. The town has been a favourite with tourists for 150 years, and nowadays has a population of 7,500 in the winter and 40,000 in the summer. But it was very nearly a lot bigger - in the 1600s, Vauban, the Commissaire responsible for fortifying the French coast, was much taken with the spot and very nearly chose it for the huge coastal fortifications which, in the end, he gave to Cherbourg.

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The nearby Grand Isle, separated from the mainland by a narrow channel, was once famous for its granite quarrying industry. The rock was transported from the island by boat, and was used in the construction of many imposing buildings in Paris. After the quarrying had stopped, the place became much more peaceful; Joseph Conrad lived here for several years and wrote many of his most famous maritime books during that period.




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