North of Brittany, on the border with Normandy and the Bay of Mont Saint Michel, stretches the famous “Côte d’Emeraude” with its blue green waters reminiscent of a gemstone. Straddling the departments of Ille et Vilaine and Côtes d'Armor, there are several popular resorts such as Dinard and St Malo. Nearby, a few lesser known resorts are worth a visit. That’s where you will find the most beautiful beaches of the Côte d’Emeraude.
The most untamed beaches of the Côte d’Emeraude are located in the department of Côtes d'Armor. The resorts are less known than those of Ille et Vilaine. They are family orientated (St Malo attracts mostly foreigners).
Lourtuais Beach near Cap Erquy
The most beautiful beaches of Brittany are situated near Erquy. This capital of the St Jacques shell is a popular destination. The beaches of Erquy remained wild near Cap of Erquy. This area is famous for shore fishing and many Britons claim that it has the most beautiful beaches of France! Walking trails enable many easy accesses to the sea (the cape is owned by the Conservatoire du Littoral, trails from the carpark to the Cap following the GR34).
The Pléneuf Val André waterfront with its large beach
A few kilometres south, we appreciate the seaside resort of Pléneuf Val André with its main sandy beach, 2.5 km long, bordered by a nice promenade.
Sable d’Or les Pins great beach
To the north, it is the beauty of Cap Frehel that attracts many tourists throughout the year. Its cliffs, of over 70 meters high, are overlooked by a lighthouse and mark a break with the rest of the Côte d’Emeraude. Nearby, there is the resort of Sables d’Or les Pins . Little known, it is, in our opinion, one of the most enjoyable of the Côte d’Emeraude. It was created in the 20s to compete with Deauville but the Second World War marked the end of its development. There is a Belle Epoque atmosphere that reminds you a little of Normandy. If you are looking for a quiet unspoilt resort, you have found your next destination! The beach of Minieu is a real pearl with the island of St Michel within walking distance. There is a lifeguard station and many activities in the high season.
Do not forget to make a stop at Fort La Latte near Cap Frehel. This stronghold defended the Bay of Fresnaye. It has been the backdrop for many films.
The sea view from Dinard’s Ecluse Beach
Dinard is one of the most fashionable seaside resorts of Brittany. There are many villas of all styles, some of which are extravagant. In the summer season, Ecluse Beach is the main meeting. There are outdoor cafes, hotels and also many activities on the beach. It even has a swimming pool with sea water, ideal at low tide.
Chemin de ronde in St Malo
Saint Malo is totally different from Dinard. The city has a more austere side probably because of the Corsair atmosphere that prevails ... The old town, with its narrow streets decorated with numerous shops and restaurants, is very touristy. Saint Malo's beaches have some originality. Eventail Beach and Grande Plage Beach face Fort National (built by Vauban) accessible at low tide. A unique setting for these beaches.
St Malo’s Fort Vauban next to the city centre beaches
In the Rothéneuf area (outside of the historical centre), Nicet Beach has interested lovers of hidden beaches.
Guesclin Fort in the centre of the beach