It is undoubtedly one of the jewels of the Emerald Coast: this charming seaside resort still shows the elegant imprint of late 19th century aristocratic tourism and the splendour of the Belle Époque . Its high-class villas perched by the sea, with their enchanting green hues, create a landscape with vaguely British echoes.
Located in the heart of Brittany, the town of Dinard is a charming seaside resort, famous for its beaches and crystal-clear green sea.
A must-see walk in Dinard is Clair de Lune, perfect for appreciating the charms of the Emerald Coast and the River Rance. The route runs along the seafront: it starts from Prieuré beach and arrives at the pier of the Bec-de-la-Vallée bay.
Along the 2 km walk, you can admire a splendid view of the Rance estuary, Saint-Malo, Saint-Servan and the splendid 19th-century villas, surrounded by Mediterranean vegetation with intoxicating scents. It is even more beautiful at night, as its name suggests: thanks to a sound and light show, the promenade is cloaked in charm and magic.
One of the most enchanting corners of Dinard is certainly the Pointe du Moulinet. For a long time, this rocky block was home to just a few fishermen’s houses and the small mill from which it takes its name. But by the end of the 19th century, wealthy holidaymakers, almost all from Paris, fell in love with the place. Thus began the construction of many elegant villas, each with its own style, often featuring architectural curiosities worth admiring.
In addition, the walk will take you to the top of the promontory to enjoy splendid views of the surroundings of Dinard.
The most famous building in Dinard is undoubtedly the villa Les Roches Brunes, which profoundly characterises the town’s landscape.
Built in 1893 in the neo-Louis XIII style, it is a representative example of the architecture of the Belle Époque period. Today, the villa is a historical monument and regularly hosts exhibitions and concerts. It can be visited and a fabulous panorama can be admired from its incredible terrace, which seems to be suspended above the waves.
Dinard’s market is one of the largest in the region: the large glass hall comes alive three days a week and brings together up to 300 traders and crowds of visitors who flock to the café terraces.
You can admire, buy or taste every local delicacy, from vegetables to shellfish to a multitude of Breton specialities.
Like the neighbouring Norman town of Deauville, Dinard also stands out for its cinephile vocation. The town comes alive every year with the British Film Festival. For more than 30 years, this annual event has delighted spectators and lovers of the United Kingdom, rewarding auteur films and short films under the aegis of a prestigious jury.
Precisely because of this love of cinema, a statue has been erected in the city in honour of the great Alfred Hitchcock, the spiritual godfather of the British film festival: the unmistakable silhouette of the director fits perfectly into the local landscape.
If you have time for a day trip, you might consider booking a sea connection to the island of Cézembre, which boasts the warmest beach in the region, the only one facing south.
Perfect for swimming and sunbathing, it is also recommended for a magnificent panorama of Saint-Malo and Dinard.
Overlooking Prieuré beach, the park offers a beautiful landscape where sea and vegetation meet harmoniously: 23 hectares of woodland and flowers await you, including a family-friendly wildlife park.
Originally, the park was the garden of the manor of Port-Breton, built in 1920 by a British aristocrat. Today, it is the perfect place to discover the city’s prestigious past.
Plage de l'Écluse8 is a large sandy beach, located in the heart of the town and very lively all year round. On the beach are the iconic blue and white striped wind tents, photographed by all the tourists. All around are the shops, terraces and restaurants, attracting a cosmopolitan crowd in a family atmosphere.
Also not to be missed is Plage Saint-Enogat9, located in the old town, also called the cradle of Dinard. Surrounded by wooden cabins and beautiful villas, it hosts a nautical club, a children’s club and a minigolf course.
Recommended for families, Plage du Prieuré10 is equipped with water activities, fitness stations and beach restaurants. By contrast, Plage du Port Blanc11 is definitely the wildest, bordered by a large campsite.
The famous GR34 hiking trail, the customs path, also passes through Dinard and we recommend you walk the most significant section, which is almost 6 kilometres long. The Dinard coastal path contains all the ingredients of an exceptional walk: breathtaking views, wild nature and magnificent villas. The route is not difficult, just pay attention to tide times and not to walk it in bad weather.
The departure is from the Plage de l’Écluse, passing by the Plage Saint-Enogat and following a paved path at the water’s edge (beware of small children), which will take you to see both Villa Les Roches Brunes and Pointe du Moulinet. It is a great way, on a fine summer’s day, to admire all the town’s main attractions during a pleasant walk by the sea. The route ends at Bec de la Vallée, an intimate little harbour.
In the following map you can see the location of the main places of interest mentioned in this article
There is no railway station in Dinard. However, the town is very close to Saint-Malo, which can be reached by train with the TGV from Paris in about 2 hours and 15 minutes. From Saint-Malo, you can get to Dinard by bus (calculate 20 minutes) or by ferry (10-minute crossing).
In any case, the most convenient means of transport is definitely the car: it takes about 4 hours and 15 minutes to reach the French capital, following the A11, A81 and D137.
If you want to explore the Breton Emerald Coast further, Dinard is an excellent starting point: it is a pleasant and lively town, suitable for a stay just a stone’s throw from the main resorts in the area.
Packed with restaurants, bistros and casinos, it boasts a lively nightlife, especially in the summer months.
What's the weather at Dinard? Below are the temperatures and the weather forecast at Dinard for the next few days.
Overlooking the Gulf of Saint Malo, the town of Dinard is one of the most attractive locations in the Ille-et-Vilaine department.