Whilst on a holiday in France, Alan brought me to the Forêt de Huelgoat for an afternoon long stroll. It is located in the Northwestern France and it is considered as one of the hidden gems of Brittany. Huelgoat means “The High Woods” in Britton, which is a Celtic language close to the Welsh language.Before we went there, Alan described the place and showed some photos to me. I thought it was just an ordinary forest and I didn’t expect I would like it that much. But, when I first saw the woods, it was as good as the photographs and it exceeded my expectations.
When we reached the little town of Huelgoat, it looked sleepy and the lake was so peaceful, but it was full of character, with its lake, waterfall and honey and homemade ice cream shop.As we entered into the Silver Valley, we had to crawl under gigantic rocks, which was an experience by itself. The Chaos of Rocks or Le Chaos de Rochers is a jumble of hundreds of large boulders, into which the river vanishes. These huge boulders were moved and polished by glaciers tens of thousands of years ago.We were amazed by the wonderful landscape and the enchanting views of massive mossy boulders that have stirred the Britton imagination in fantastic ways. The woods were much bigger than I thought. The “jumble” of huge boulders, the granite formations, the deep green wood and the rushing creek are all astonishing, making it a truly magical place.Then we steep climbed down a 10 meters metal ladder bolted onto the rock facing to the “Devil’s Cave.” It was quite fun and it was interesting to see the river continue its trek under all these boulders. The nearby falls was very picturesque as it runs rapidly below a dark cave called the Devil’s Grotto.We then continued strolling all around the places we saw this trembling rock or La Roche Tremblante which attracted many tourists. It is a 137-tonne boulder. Alan and I were able to shake this enormous rock while some visitors didn’t know where to push no matter how hard they tried. The rock stands on a small spiky end, and will rock gently if you push it just right. A few millimeters away from the pushing spot, you’d just be trying to move 137 tonnes of granite.This is a stunning place that is not very well known to foreigners (in this place a foreigner is someone who was not born in Brittany) but it is a wonderful place to visit for a picnic or an easy good walk for anyone who is reasonably fit and at the same time it provides a great day out for both children and adults. There are plenty of lovely shady foot paths through a wonderland of giant rocks and streams. There are walks for miles if you are up to it, but if you wish to spend time around the main area, it is already very nice.We loved our fairytale walk in the Forêt de Huelgoat and in particular when we held our hands while walking through the woods and the chaos of giant rocks. To walk around, over, through and underneath this place was just awesome, as if some giant aliens had strewn the massive rocks along the river bed. It is idyllic, mystical, beautiful and calm. It feels tranquil, timeless and it seems that you discover something new practically every step of the way. To us, it is a fairytale forest where you expect animals such as snakes, monkeys, dwarves, wolves, etc to appear any time. It is also a wonderful place to go all year round because it gives you different marvelous views, feelings, different shades of green or black and it seems you expect to bump into a storybook witch during the dark of the winter, a unicorn during the soft spring, prince charming during the moist summer and Tatiana and Oberon during the wistful autumn. We experienced a storybook story while sitting on an enormous rock, eating yummy homemade ice cream, walking, crawling, visiting, wondering, breathing fresh air and enjoying the wonders of nature.We highly recommend this wonderful work of nature. So, what are you waiting for? Get your boots on and experience the beauty and seclusion of Foret de Huelgoat. For gentlemen out there, whisk you loved one away to that delightful hideaway that you and that special someone will never forget. 🙂