La Grande Métairie at Carnac is a very popular campsite which is a member of the prestigious Castels chain of quality campsites. It is a large site set in stunning parkland in the countryside just a few miles inland from the coast. It is just outside the holiday town of Carnac with its interesting museums, churches, markets, shops and restaurants and numerous splendid beaches.
The site is also positioned adjacent to the famous Carnac Standing Stones, which can be accessed right next to the site. Thousands of large stones stretch for a mile, lined up towards the sun. Well worth a walk along to see them. There is also a museum of the stones and a creperie nearby.
The site has excellent facilities, although it can get busy in the high season of July and August. It is ideal for young families in early or late summer and lively enough for everyone in high summer. It’s the fantastic pool complex with its lazy river, waterslides and indoor pool that first catches your eye at La Grande Métairie.
Booking Your Holiday
This campsite has some interesting types of accommodation - they have normal mobile homes or tent and caravan pitches but also have tree houses, gypsy caravans and fisherman's huts ! So something to suit everyone!
- • St Malo: 178 km
- • Roscoff: 180 km
- • Caen: 321 km
- • Cherbourg: 354 km
- • Le Havre: 414 km
- • Lorient airport : 59 kms
- • Rennes airport : 141 kms
- • Nantes airport : 143 km
- • Dinard airport : 163 kms
- • Brest airport : 177 kms
- • It is possible to reach the local town of Auray by rail on the TGV which has services each day arriving from Paris.
- • Local Railway: Auray, 11 Km
Things to do in the Area
There is plenty to see and do in Carnac itself and in the surrounding villages.
La Trinite sur Mer is adjacent to Carnac and we have mentioned further information about this area under the campsite information for La Baie at Trinite Sur Mer which you can access from our menu on the right.
There are many fantastic beaches at Carnac, including la Grande Plage, and further to the east, Plage Men Dû and Beaumer right along the seafront. The Saint-Colomban beach located in Carnac-Plage is popular with wind surfers. There are also many shops to visit, including a supermarket. You will also find a great ice cream shop as well with all sorts of flavours (or parfums (pronounced "parfams") in French).
However one of the main attractions in Carnac is of course the site of the megaliths. Carnac has the biggest megalithic site in the world with over 3,000 large standing stones or menhirs as they are called, standing in a area which measures over a kilometre in length. The stones date from about 4,500 BC.
You can also see dolmens, which are single chambered megalithic tombs, such as this one which can be seen from the road near the Grande Metairie campsite :
There is a lovely creperie at the far end of the alignments called Creperie au Pressoir (see below) :
In the centre of Carnac near the Tourist Information is the Saint-Cornély church, which is a very beautiful Renaissance building (built in the 17th Century) and well worth visiting particularly to see its interior (see below). St Cornely is the local patron saint of horned animals and you will see the figure of St Cornely framed by oxen above the pediment of the West Door. The painted frescoes in the nave also show scenes from his life.
Another very old church which is worth visiting is the Chapelle de Saint Colomban, which is situated just outside Carnac itself in the hamlet of Saint Colomban. St Columba (or St Colomban) himself is said to have visited here and this chapel was built to commemorate that visit. This gothic chapel was built in 1575. There is a blessing of animals that takes place every year and this is depicted on a picture on one of the walls of the church.
Below are some views from the Church of the typical stone building of a Breton village. In one of the photographs you can see an old farmhouse. The animals used to live below and the people above - accessing the loft via the stairs.
There is a very good museum The Musée de Préhistoire and also the Archeoscope visitor centre in Carnac which are both worth visiting :
- • The Museum of Prehistory (Musée de Préhistoire James Miln-Zacharie Le Rouzic). One of the richest collections of prehistory with many interesting objects on display. The musée James Miln-Zacharie Le Rouzic is situated in an ancient rectory at the heart of the town of Carnac. The Museum is named after the Scot James Miln (1819–1881), who worked in Brittany as an archaologist and worked with the menhirs at Carnac. He worked with the Frenchman Zacharie Le Rouzic (1864–1939). On his death James Miln bequeathed his collection to the town of Carnac and his brother Robert set up this museum. In 1978, the Municipalité decided to transfer the Museum to the former rectory (see photograph below) in which it is now situated. There is also an interesting exhibition for 2010 about the Péquart family, who were archaologists on the Islands of Houat and Hoedic from 1923 - 1934. Address : 10, place de la Chapelle 56340 Carnac For more information : www.museedecarnac.com
- • Archéoscope Visitor Centre - with a car park and visitor centre just opposite the Western End of the Menhirs, this visitor centre has a display with a large model of the site of the menhirs and also has a good book shop. Address : Rue du Ménec, Carnac 56340
There is a Petit Train in Carnac which will take you around many of these sites and is a great way to find out about the town when you have just arrived.
Some more archaeology :
If you found the menhirs at Carnac to be of interest the you might like to visit some more of the prehistoric sites in the area. There are numerous sites in the area where you can see some more megalithic structures. We enjoyed visiting Locmariaquer, thirteen kilometers east of Carnac, at the tip of a peninsula, where you can find four significant megalithic sites including the Great Menhir or Grand Menhir Brise, also known as Mener-Hroec. When it was intact, this 340-ton granite stone stood 98 feet tall. It was broken by lightning and now lies in five pieces, the largest of which is almost 40 feet long.
Nearby is a very well-preserved dolmen known as the Table des Marchands or Merchants Table, with a 100-ton capstone covering a large chamber. The supporting stones are carved with stylized suns and ears of corn.
Also near Locmariaquer, on the sand dunes, is the "Dolmen des Pierres Plates" ("dolmen of the flat stones"). This tomb is filled with decorated stones with its entrance facing the sea. This tomb is free to visit although on the day we visited a helpful man was hiring out torches for 2Euros which was essential really to view the carvings on the stones inside ! Further information at : http://locmariaquer.monuments-nationaux.fr/en
You can get a Four Site Pass to visit four major megalithic sites including admission to the Table des Marchands, Great Menhir, Saint-Michel Tumulus in Carnac and Carnac Museum of Prehistory.
There is a very good online guide to the megaliths etc at : http://www.culture.gouv.fr/culture/arcnat/megalithes/index.html
Disclaimer: The reviews published on the site are intended solely for the purpose of providing general information and comment and are purely our opinions. We cannot guarantee that reviews of descriptions on this site are accurate, up to date or free from error. We have found that the campsites described are very good but we find that it is difficult to find a campsite which has 100% of what you are looking for. Also one person may love a busy campsite with lots of activities while someone else may love a quiet campsite with a small swimming pool. Actually we tend to be the latter ! So what we have done is highlight the good points of the sites and maybe point out a few of what we have found as slightly negative points. However we strongly recommend that you make full use of as many internet sources as possible before deciding about your holiday, including Google maps etc.