Getting there


On the road and on the way


Take the A10 then the A11 to Le Mans.

At Le Mans, take the A81, and continue after on the N157 to Rennes.

Just before Rennes you continue on the N136/E50; after Rennes you take the N24 in the direction of Lorient/Vannes.

At Ploermel you continue on the N166; just before Vannes you take the N165.

At Landévant you take the exit for Nostang, and take the D33 on the left.

You drive through Nostang; after the center of Nostang (church on left) you will go over a speed bump at the crest of a hill and come down the other side.  You'll see the waters (if the tide is in) of the marshes on your left, and probably an egret or two.  This is your signal to slow down, so you can take the D158 on your left to go over the little bridge.  You'll also see a sign for Sainte Hélène sur Mer and I think something like a painted picture of an oyster, the village's main product.

You follow the road for about five minutes while driving past the marshes and nature reserve on your left, and it takes you into the center of Sainte Hélène; you will see the Ty Forn (bar-restaurant-crêperie) and the Mairie on your left and a parking lot and then the church on your right.

You turn right after the church, but go slowly, because you are going to turn almost immediately left, taking the narrow little road between the few stone buildings and the caterer's on the corner; if you have the Café Napoléon on your left you have gone too far.

This little street is called rue du Penher, and turns into a road.

Drive a minute or so and you take your first left, just after the cemetery and the tennis courts; you'll have open fields on your right. This street has been called Rue de la Carrière for a year now (but your GPS may say "Kerzerh" or "rue de la Butte").

Drive down to 2 Rue de la Carrière, where the road is about to curve round to the left and Kan ar Voualc'h is on the corner on your left, the last house in stone.  You'll see "Kan ar Voualc'h" and "Deborah Mends" on the mailbox.  You can pull in between the pillars of the gates to park off the road.


You can take a train from Paris to Auray, and then pick up your rental car in the Avis right there at the tiny train station - several yards to your left on coming out of the station. The SNCF train service offers train + car deals that sometimes can be very good. If you get in late and after the Avis station is closed, no panic! In such cases Avis leaves the keys and your car contract with the stationmasters, so if you go to their counter they will give them to you - you're in the country here! It's a trip of about three and a half hours by express train, longer if you take a local, depending on which ticket you get. You then have a 20 minute drive to the house.  The Avis people can tell you how to find the N165 to Lorient, and then you just follow the above directions.

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Finding the village of Sainte-Hélène-sur-Mer


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An American of Welsh-English extraction, I've lived in France for almost thirty years, splitting my time today between Paris, Brittany and the Middle East. I am the owner of Atelier Mends SAS, which offers innovative drawing instruction online. Based on certain Old Master techniques and the latest research on how the mind learns, complete beginners can learn to draw realistically and sensitively; more experienced students will learn to develop their artist eye. Visit my English-language website at, or, if you're a French speaker, check out Interested in taking a drawing course during your stay at Kan ar Voualc'h? I offer one-day sketching jaunts to Pont Aven and to Auray:


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