Andrew Eames has written an article based on our south Finistère itinerary which he did with us in late April 2018. The article is called "You Do the Walking. We'll Bring the Caravan", or print version "Earn Your Breton Stripes", and was published on 22nd June 2018 by the Financial Times. A quick google takes you to the article, but I haven't linked to the article as the FT online is a subscriber service. Update (August 2018) I now find the article is only available to subscribers.
Delightful, Well Planned and Thoughtful Hike This was our first trip to Brittany and we are so pleased that we chose to experience this beautiful area of France by hiking with John and Sarah. It is difficult to decide which to review first the hike or the trailer (caravan). Since we would not be in the trailer without the hike, I will start there.
John and Sarah did an expert job of customizing the South Finistere hike for our needs which included hiking fewer miles each day and a couple of rest days. They were also flexible about adjusting the customized itinerary once we began our hike.
Every day of the hike provided us with a new insight into Brittany from white, sandy beaches, to fern filled woods, to miles long estuaries (abers), to seaweed covered oyster beds, to rocky coastline, to sparkling ocean shores, to picture post card villages. We had anticipated hiking along rocky coastline but not in the many woods which was an added plus.
And, of course, an added benefit was arriving at the end of each hiking day at our perfectly outfitted trailer. The trailer had plenty of room to store our belongings with space to spare, a comfortable mattress to sleep on, a stove, sink and refrigerator, and a sitting area. The annex allowed us to sit and eat outside and be protected from the elements. It is also equipped with sufficient culinary equipment to meet your every need. Want a cup of tea in the morning? Not only is there a kettle and a teapot but also mugs. Want to make a salad and wash the lettuce? There is a lettuce spinner as well as a salad bowl. For those of you who have ever rented a vacation (holiday) home, you will be pleased to know that there is an exceptional item in the utensil drawer - a sharp chef’s knife!
In summary, if you are reading this review and wondering if this hike is for you - sign up now, you won’t regret it!
Sandi and Geoff, Oakland, CA (June 2019) Thank you Sandi and Geoff for the review and photos.
Review We made use of John and Sarah's services for a 6-night walk along GR34 from Concarneau to just east of Le Pouldu in early May 2018. As we are keen walkers, the itinerary was carefully tailored for us to cover a reasonable mileage each day and have the prevailing wind to our backs. Having the caravan on the route removed all need for wasted journeys inland and really made the holiday. An added benefit was the provision of a safe place to leave our car during the walk. The spring wildflowers were fabulous and the coastline and river estuaries beautiful with an unspoilt feel. The caravan was particularly well-equipped with cooking utensils, fridge, outside seating area, barbecue and bicycles. It was these features that really did make it attractive. The mattress in the caravan is highly recommended, providing an excellent nights sleep. The shopping and laundry service worked very well and made us feel cared for.
Above all, John and Sarah were perfect hosts (along with Gus the dog). They listened to any request we might have and responded positively. The choice of campsites was exemplary, and John took great care to make sure the caravan was pitched to take account of views and sunlight to sit out in, while providing a sense of privacy.
John and Sarah communicate their cheery, natural enthusiasm for the Breton Coast and translate this into their professionalism. I would highly recommend Sanssacados as a creative and fun way of experiencing GR34, or other walks in Brittany, even for people who might not initially be considering use of a caravan. Stephen & Angela, Wiltshire, UK
Our itinerary: Day 1: Arrive Concarneau Day 2: Point de Jument (9 miles) Day 3: Port Manec'h (10.6 miles) Day 4: Belon (13 miles) Day 5: Ile Percee (14.5 miles) Day 6: Le Pouldu (17.5 miles) Day 7: Abbaye de St Maurice (5.3 miles)
Many thanks Stephen and Angela.
Many thanks to John and Rosemary who walked our south Finistère itinerary in July 2018 and kindly sent us the review below.
Carol Thu 11 Oct, 23:28
I stumbled across the Sanssacados website when I did an internet search for walking holidays in Europe last year, in the early planning stages for some holiday time we had coming up in 2018. While I was intrigued at the time, we didn't feel we wanted to tie ourselves down to any set itinerary so I didn't make a booking, but I kept the idea stored in the back of my mind for future reference. When our holiday time came around, all I had booked was our plane tickets to Nantes and the hotel for 3 nights - the 'plan' was to wing it for the next three weeks, somehow working a coastal walk or two into the mix! You'd think, coming from Canada's west coast, that we would have an appreciation of time/distance ratios, wouldn't you? We were determined to avoid driving, so did not rent a car and were relying on our feet and public transportation. At the end of two weeks, we were pretty much fed up with urban walks and schlepping our bags from one hotel to the next and we still hadn't been to Finistere - a cornerstone of our original 'ideal' itinerary. I was one step away from renting a car when I remembered Sanssacados. One e-mail and two days later, we hauled our backpacks one more time from our hotel in Concarneau two kilometers to the campground where we dropped our bags and got directions from our charming hosts, John and Sarah, and headed off on the GR34, carefree and totally unencumbered. Over the next 5 days, we covered about 100 km from Concarneau to Pouldu, slept warm and comfortably in a lovely, well equipped little camping trailer which kept appearing, as if by magic, completely and efficiently set up, at clean and serviced campgrounds (complete with any groceries and beverages we had ordered) at the end of our daily trek. Camping is our preferred method of vacationing and we have done it by many means over the years - backpacking, camper van, tent trailer, cabin based - but, for many reasons, this was the most enjoyable method, ever! Outside of tidying up ourselves and our dishes each morning, all we had to do was get up and get walking - each day on new paths with new vistas and novel experiences, including amazing beaches and local cafes. We went to bed when we were ready, always had electricity and internet, ate and drank what and when we wanted, and got up and got going when we were ready each day by popping on day packs, locking the door and trotting off. Add to that the daily opportunity to chat (usually in the evening over food and/or drinks) with the endlessly accommodating John and Sarah, whose extensive knowledge of the area and general amiability were exemplary, and you have the perfect walking vacation. As our time was limited, we weren't able to complete the full itinerary but John and Sarah morphed the plan to make it work for us. I don't know how we will ever top the experience, to be honest! Excellent value for money, as well.
Thanks to Carol and Bryan, our first trans-atlantic guests, for such a wonderful review.
"Having walked the SW Coastal path, amongst other long distant paths and having enjoyed it so much my wife and I were looking for a similar adventure and for some time have been contemplating the Brittany coastal Path. Whilst researching the options we came across the Sanssacados website and the first thing that attracted us was the in depth information on the service they provide together with the way it is presented. John & Sarah have put a lot of effort into researching the route and the comprehensive description leaves the reader with a clear idea of exactly what can be expected whilst walking each section. We were both so impressed with the overall product we decided to book the Finistere walk for the first week in September 2018. We were lucky with the weather, sunshine all week long, which is always welcome when you’re holidaying in a caravan and outside all week. The walking is fairly easy along flatish terrain with a total of around 70 miles over the week. The caravan is so well equipped. It has everything you will need during your stay and it is all spotlessly clean. Jokingly, I said to John on the second day I am trying to find an item that isn’t provided. The campsites were all of a very good standard with a range of amenities. J&S choose each days pitch very carefully, somewhere fairly secluded that makes the most of the afternoon sun and is not too far from the shower block. We decided to cater for ourselves and had several BBq’s (a Webber Smokey Joe and all associated paraphernalia is provided). We also made a packed lunch for each day. J&S will take your food orders each day and on several mornings and without being asked they went and bought bread for us. J&S are genuinely very friendly, kind and helpful. We felt very welcome from the start and had a fabulous time; the holiday met our expectation in every way. So good in fact, that we have booked the Crozon stretch for next year. We couldn’t fault the holiday or the service J&S provide and would definitely recommend this holiday to anyone who likes multiday walking. Jan & Howard "
Many thanks Howard and Jan. We're very much looking forward to the next adventure.