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February 7, 2019

France: Brittany, Abbaye de Beauport


Inside the ruins of the church at Abbaye de Beauport

A short drive from the port town of Paimpol in France’s Côtes-d’Armor department is the Abbaye de Beauport. Construction of the abbey at this spot began near the turn of the 13th Century, more than 800 years ago.

As it often happened the fortunes of the monastery ebbed and flowed with the politics of the time. Ultimately Abbaye de Beauport was closed in 1790 during the French Revolution, a time when decrees suppressed the role of organized religion in France. After the Revolution the abbey fell into a state of severe disrepair.

Flying buttresses continue to support the walls.

In 1992, the site was taken over by Conservatoire du Littoral. Restorations stabilized some structures and repaired others. Eventually the abbey was opened to visitors. It has become one of the major tourist sites in Brittany.

Today visitors have good access throughout the abbey. Exploring the compound takes roughly an hour. Both well-restored and partially ruined areas can be visited for the admission price. Most unique and evocative are the garden-like areas where the structure has partially collapsed.

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We visited Abbaye de Beauport in August of 2018.

The grass is green inside the church.

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