Saturday, 9 July 2011

St Malo

St Malo is my favourite town in the region of Brittany (Northern France) where I live. I first went there a few years ago when we were thinking about buying a house in the area, and I fell in love with the little walled town. I'm leaving for France again this morning, so enjoy the last of the photos from my trip last month, and I'm sure that there will be many more for you all to enjoy when I get back!
Outside of the main city in the area, Rennes, I think St Malo has the best shops and restaurants in the area, with everything from designer stores to independent boutiques, Italian bistros to places that serve the local sea food from along the coast at Cancal (another of my favourite places to eat - I love sea food!)
I took this photo of St Malo from across the coast on the beach at Dinard, so you can see how the old town is walled in with little sandy beaches around the ramparts.
As I have said, I love the food there because my ideal lunch is a big bowl of mussels and a glass of rose - regardless of whatever else is on the menu, there is not a restaurant in the town (I don't think!) that does not serve it!
Quite a boring picture actually, but I love all of the cobbles streets in St Malo, common across the rest of Europe but not really this part of France.
I will also remember St Malo as the first place in the region I had proper macaroons and patisserie cakes - these mousses looked incredible!
On the main shopping street there is an amazing set of candy stores, the nougat lumps looked good, but I loved all these different hard candies - you could stand there and watch them being made behind the counter!
When I shop in St Malo the first place I head to is Le Petit Bateau, the classic French store to buy your basics.
I also love Kookai for their knitwear, print tee shirts and soft beret hats.
It was the first time I'd gone into any of the many bookshops in St Malo, and I really wish this store was back in England than in France!
I also love Comptoir des Cotonniers for their basics - I think because of the clean aesthetic of French and Parisian style, the French do do much, much better basics than we do in England.
I've always wanted to go for a drink in this Irish pub, but have not had a chance to yet. I think it is because of the incredible window display of vintage suitcases and old books.
One of the main reasons I love to visit St Malo is for the ice cream, and the incredible flavours they have in the ice cream parlour at the top of the main street. The pink one you can see is Haribo Tagada flavour - the next one I think I'm going to have to try!
Last time I visited I had the most incredible and creamy rose ice cream, but this time I went for Kinder Egg flavour. It was so sweet and creamy, had little pieces of Kinder chocolate in it, and tasted exactly like a Kinder Egg - if you visit St Malo I really recommend it! My nail polish is 'Nice is Nice' from the Essie French Affair collection.
I don't really like either flavour, but I was told that the pistachio and coffee flavours were also fantastic.

Has anyone been to St Malo before?

Rachel Phipps


  1. That ice-cream looks AMAZING, love the pub with the suitcases, haven't seen anything like that before!


  2. Looks lovely! I wish I had been there. I am a bit ashamed to admit that even though I am French, I don't really know half of the treasures that my country holds. You should come to the French Riviera one day, there isn't as many quirky places but if you love mussels and rosé you'd be one happy girl.

  3. Love the photograph of the library/bookstore? It looks like such a charming, quaint little place. Can't wait to see pictures from your trip. I hope you have a lovely time, Rachel!

  4. I love St Malo! I used to nanny some children who's grandparents live in France, so when I took them to visit them we'd go to St Malo quite often. It's so lovely. Those ice creams look delicious!! x

  5. Oh, it looks such a beautiful place; that bookstore(?) looks so sweet. And that ice-cream looks delicious... Insanely so. x

  6. wow! unbelievably in love with this place! I am so going to travel around France when I'm older, this is so pretty. that ice cream looks lush!

  7. St Malo looks like the loveliest place. I'm dying at all the food pictures and I love the look of that bookstore! I've never been anywhere like it before, I hope I'll be able to someday.

  8. I have never been but my sister has and she loved it. x

  9. store porn? Need to visit this place!

  10. I would seriously love to travel like you. Europe has so much to offer. I'm going in a month and I can't wait! That ice cream looks to die for!


  11. Looks beautiful!
    I'm very jelous, hope you had a good time x

  12. I've never been to St Malo before but I want to go now! I too love French brands such as Kookai (and Jennyfer. Ahem.)... I haven't been to france for 3 years, though!!

    Julia @ Retro Jules

  13. St Malo looks absolutely beautiful! I would definitely love to visit one day.

  14. Kinder egg flavor? I'm dying. I might fly to France just for that delicious ice cream.

  15. I love Dinard! I studied in Rennes for 6 months and Dinard/St Malo were two of my favorite places. I actually remember going into that Librarie Septentrion. Everything was beautiful but I remember it being really expensive. Following your blog for nostalgia's sake (and for the lovely photos).
    -Julia Topaz

  16. Oh my goodness! This place looks amazing! My husband and I live in Canada but we are moving to Bristol, UK in October and we have decided to make St. Malo one of our first trips! Do you take a ferry there or fly?

  17. @ Julia - You're so lucky to have studied in such a beautiful area! My parents brought a house just outside of Combourg a few years ago, so I've been having such fun exploring the area! Sitting back in England I'm missing all the sunshine I was enjoying at Cancal the other day!

    @ Marie-Claire - I drive, because my parents have a house there, and rather than taking the ferry (awful) I suggest you take the Channel Tunnel train under the channel, much nicer and only half an hour!

  18. Bella Le Blanc27 July 2011 at 17:53

    Rachel HELLOOO,

    I remember saving your blog link ages ago in my bookmarks and I just came across it now and I have been browsing your through your blog and I love it. What can I say it's brilliant. And that is sooo exciting to you are living in St Malo as well!!

    I love browsing through your recent posts!!
    Hope your well.

    Love Bella xx