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Brittany – Huelgoat

Huelgoat Forest

Huelgoat is a municipality in the department of Finistère in Brittany in northwestern France. The village lies on a lake created between the 16th and 18th centuries to supply water to local silver-lead mines by means of a 3 km canal.On its territory lies the forest Huelgoat.

Huelgoat is popular with tourists and holidaymakers due to its impressive natural setting among the vestiges of the ancient forest that once covered inland Brittany. Once part of royal and ducal lands, the forest is now overseen by the French forestry commission, the National Forests Office. It has an area of 10 square kilometres. A large replanting scheme has repaired much of the damage sustained by the forest in storms on the 15–16 October 1987, when 3.1 square kilometres of trees were levelled or damaged.

Hiking path in Huelgoat forest


A number of geological and prehistoric curiosities can be found by following trails in and around the village and forest. Among these are:

  • Le Chaos de Rochers, the Chaos of Rocks, is a jumble of hundreds of large boulders below the dammed lake, into which the river vanishes. A 10 m descent down ladders is required to see it again, running rapidly below a dark cave called the Devil’s Grotto.
Chaos de Rochers – Chaos of Rocks in the Huelgoat
  • La Roche Tremblante or Trembling Rock, is a 137-tonne boulder nearby, pivoted so it can be made to rock by a person pushing against one point.
La Roche Tremblante
La Roche Tremblante or Trembling Rock – balanced boulder, weighing 137 tons in the Huelgoat forest in Brittany


  • Le Champignon, or The Mushroom, is a large rock balanced on a smaller one to give the eponymous appearance.
  • La Mare aux Fées, The Fairies’ Pool.
  • La Mare aux Sangliers, The Wild Boar Pool.
  • Le Camp d’Artus, Arthur’s Camp, a sea promontory hillfort based on a Gaulish oppidum, with a linear murus gallicus rampart. It was used as refuge by the Osisme Gauls against the Roman invasion in 57 BC and later acquired a nickname referring to Arthurian legend. The site was excavated by Sir Mortimer Wheeler.
  • La Grotte d’Artus, or Arthur’s Cave, is a natural shelter formed under a roof of jammed rocks
Grotte d'Artus
Arthur’s Cave, Huelgoat, department of Finistère, Brittany, France
  • menhirs in the forest and around
Menhir de Kerampeulven
Menhir de Kerampeulven, Berrien, departement Finistère, Brittany, France




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