Surrounded by sea on practically all sides, Saint-Malo is one of Brittany's leading tourist hotspots – and for good reason. The port city was notorious for its corsairs during the 16th and 17th centuries and remains a fascinating destination, with the magnificent granite ramparts that ring the town just one of several attractions along with Saint-Vincent Cathedral, the Fort National, the City of Aleth and the old town itself.
Those features make Saint-Malo a magnet for visitors, but the nearby region has plenty to offer as well. Top of the list are the fortified islands of Grand-Be and Petit-Be, must-see treasures situated on the mouth of the Rance river opposite the ramparts of Saint-Malo. Transformed into a peninsula at low tide, Grand-Be is home to the tomb of celebrated Saint-Malo writer Chateaubriand, while Petit-Be boasts a majestic, mysterious fort.
The movements of the tides are no small matter in Saint-Malo, and the difference between high tide and low tide can extend to as much as 14m – the equivalent of a four-storey building. Those dramatic extremes make for a fluid landscape that never ceases to change.
Founded in 1902, Union Sportive de Saint Malo are the pride of the local area. Despite never gracing France's top division, Les Diables Noirs (the Black Devils) were pioneers of football in Brittany and reached as high as Ligue 2 in 1933/4 – but now find themselves in National 2, France's fourth tier.