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Thread: Morbihan week?

  1. #1
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    Default Morbihan week?

    Anybody done it? Worth going? What are the highlights of the festival?

    Thinking of next year. Too early in the season to take Rosie across but could trail her sailing tender which has the benefit of being able to carry lots of wine and cheese on the journey back.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Morbihan week?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rosie1963 View Post
    Anybody done it? Worth going? What are the highlights of the festival?

    Thinking of next year. Too early in the season to take Rosie across but could trail her sailing tender which has the benefit of being able to carry lots of wine and cheese on the journey back.
    I have taken part in the Semaine du Golfe twice. It was good fun. Free berthing during the event and for several days before and after.

    But you can't do it next year because it is only held every two years.

    There's a website packed with information.

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=iyVmb4PP4gc
    Last edited by Poignard; 02-06-19 at 10:43.
    "Brexit: like watching a library being burned down by people who can't read"

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Morbihan week?

    Like Poignard, I have done it twice. Very well organised, if you don't sleep aboard, they offer camp sites at low prices and free busses to take you to the CS from where-ever you end up at the end of the day with your group and back again in the morning. The Grand Parade on the Saturday can be quite exciting, with well over a thousand boats riding the fast tide into the gulf. A Wayfarer guy showed me his GPS and they had been doing 16kts upwind on the way out over a 10kt tide....
    Apart from the accomodation, entry and stuff is free, just find your food. Most stops have catering and music. On the tuesday there is a pic-nic on the Isl aux Moines, good fun. I spoke to a friend, just 5 mins ago, who came back last night. Had a v good time.
    Last edited by DownWest; 02-06-19 at 10:42.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Morbihan week?

    Thanks for that. So Iíll work towards 2021!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2015
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    Default Re: Morbihan week?

    I went to the Semaine du Golfe two years ago on Amokura, a 1939 Fred Shepherd Yawl. The boat was owned by the writer George Millar in the 50's and he wrote a book, "Oyster River" about a summer spent on the Gulf in 1959. Before we set off we put out a message to see if we could track down any of the characters from the book. It turned out that Gerard D'Aboville, the president of the event was one of the teenagers that Miller had described using Amokura as a bathing platform. Gerard is your classic French nautical action man. He was the first to row single handed across the Pacific. He has a studied detachment and unwillingness to show emotion but he showed us a spot where Amokura had often anchored and when we finally persuaded him to come on deck it was a magical moment as he was transported back in time, all the modern white boats vanished and Amokura was once again the lone yacht on the river.

    The Gulf itself is an amazing place to sail. The currents are bonkers but apparently quite safe even with thousands of boats on parade heading for Vannes. To navigate, you place your boat at one end of "le Gullet"then pretty much let go of any control and enjoy the ride. When you pop out the other end you just want to go back and do it again.Lots of great villages and towns to explore, fantastic food especially if you like oysters. It's well worth a visit at any time not just when the festival is on.

    There is a stretch of water just to the north of Isle aux Moines where in a particularly strong current youngsters race each other against the stream, sailing at full tilt but barely moving, it's a terrific spectacle.

    Like the rest of Brittany (maybe a little more so) you need to keep your wits about you and time your movements correctly to make sure you have enough water and enough boat speed but it's fantastically rewarding.

    If you wanted to have a Brittany trip next summer you could think about the Brest festival which is another amazing spectacle followed by a mass sail down to Douarnanez which is a smaller but just as lively festival in a great little town. Then you could carry on to the south coast maybe nipping up a river at Audierne or Etel, which has an amazing old signal tower. Don't miss Isle du Groix which is utterly charming and you can finish off by following the river up to Vannes where you can tie up in the heart of a medieval city.

    Blimey.... this has got me thinking.... maybe I should see about taking my folkboat down there next year.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
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    Default Re: Morbihan week?

    Done it twice and will go again as often as I can. Think the best yacht rally you will ever see. Over a thousand boats taking part, everything from rowing gigs, sailing canoes to big square riggers. Wine food music and dancing at all participating ports. A chance to explore ancient cities and obscurish waters. Sometimes us cruisers have to motor a bit as too surrounded by small craft to tack in the narrower channels, and those with engine problems, or without an engine may need assistance from those with (MingMing was there too!) All shepherded by local organisers and safety boats including many lifeboats not actually on a "shout".

    The classic yacht fleet is a bit restrictive as mostly deeper draft and possibly more delicate so their itinery does not include some of the smaller more interesting ports, so if you are a cruiser go with the 1970s style (GRP) cruiser fleet if you can, after all the latest Bavaria say is merely 6th generation GRP design or similar.

    And as for getting there, you will be in cruising heaven, beautiful islands with ports well managed by staff who escort you in if needed. Ile de Groix, the aptly named Belle Isle (Sauzon port better than Pallais) etc etc
    Last edited by oldmanofthehills; 20-07-19 at 09:56.
    A boat is for going places

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Morbihan week?

    Incidentally SeaFair Milford Haven was meant to be the alternate year UK response to Morbihan. Sadly due lack of sponsorship, relatively tiny number of cruising boats in UK, particularly those within accessible range, SeaFair has virtually collapsed and has now bizarrely chosen to be the same year as Morbihan. I went to both this year but SeaFair felt a bit like dutifully supporting a troubled old friend whereas the Semaine du Golf felt like meeting a hundred new friends.
    A boat is for going places

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