boite à outils

Viaducts & Alleyways: to the dizzy heights

Set into three hills that connect the magnificent viaduct, Morlaix can boast an impressive number of circuitous alleyways... so there are plenty of ways you can explore and discover!

Morlaix Alleyways

venelles de Morlaix, Bretagne
Come and discover the hidden backways and alleyways of Morlaix, steep little streets that thread through the town. This isn’t a single circuit but a series of discoveries.
Set your own pace and head off on foot, climbing up the hillsides and staggered steps.
Start at the Tourist Office in Maison Penanault towards the viaduct and climb the 36 steps leading to St Melaine Church, a stunning building in high Gothic style. Next, prepare yourself for the Venelle aux Prêtres, climb to the top and you’ll reach the first floor of the viaduct and the Esplanade du Calvaire. Enjoy a silence that is almost spiritual... and what a view!
venelles de Morlaix, Bretagne
Head back down on the Venelle de la Roche, taking the pedestrian streets: the Rue de l’hospice includes traces of the ramparts that enclosed this fortified town in the 16th century; linger in the Rue du Mur to admire the overhanging facades of ancient houses, including the Duchess House known as Maison à Pondalez.
Continue along the Place des Jacobins with its Museum, the area of Saint-Mathieu and its church, or the Ange-de Guernisac street that brings you back to the beginning. And of course, don’t miss out on a final little trip to the Marina before you head off!

Morlaix’s Viaduct

viaduc de Morlaix, Bretagne
This majestic granite structure was built 1861-1864 at the time of the train link connecting Paris to Brest. The French Engineer, Fenoux, designed this viaduct. The result is unmissable and impressive: 292 metres long, 58 metres high and carrying the Paris-Brest line since 1865.

viaduc de Morlaix, Bretagne
You can climb up to the first level of the viaduct.. if you dare!

As might be imagined, this landmark has inspired many artists and poets over the years...

"Oh, viaduct, good Christian
for suffering hearts,
your arches echo the suffering of Corbière.
Here, I live happy with my soul,
the days call to me with the slow pace
of lilacs, mimosa, chestnut trees
and Sundays, recalling a time
that should never be forgotten."

Jean-Albert Guénégan

… O viaduc, bon chrétien
pour les cœurs en souffrance,
tes arches résonnent des maux de Corbière.
Ici, je vis content de mon âme,
les jours m’invitent à la lenteur
des lilas, mimosas, marronniers
et des dimanches au souvenir d’un temps
à ne pas oublier.

Jean-Albert Guénégan