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Tips and Advise for visiting France by Road to Travel Inc.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

The mystery of the Carnac Megaliths

Brittany’s mysterious megaliths near the town of Carnac are often included in private tours of France. Despite several archaeological excavations and numerous published scientific papers no one knows exactly what these 3,000 stones signify with some theories saying they were used for druidic rituals, others suggesting they served as astronomical observatories. While the jury is still out on the exact purpose of the Carnac Megaliths, there is no doubt they make up an unforgettable site where visitors can ponder on the mysteries of civilizations.

Carnac Megaliths
Dating back to around 4000 BC, the ancient standing stones are located in three fields: Ménec, Kermario and Kerlescan with various circles, alignments, dolmens, passage and mounds. The dolmens are thought to have been once graves of prehistoric people, however, no bones have survived to modern times. In the Dolmen of Kercado that retains its original shape, archaeologists found some fascinating artefacts such as pearl, axes, arrowheads, pearls and beautiful Nephrite gem beads.

Dolmen in Carnac
Several mounds (tumuli) built over chambers that once contained tombs of important families with artefacts that can be seen today in the Museum of Prehistory of Carnac located a short walk from the Ménec field. The museum has an excellent, one of the best in Europe, collections of prehistoric stone chests, tools, pottery, jewellery and other objects. 

The stones are fenced off and are only accessible on a guided tour in summer months, so plan your visit accordingly. 

Beach at Carnac-Plage
The old town of Carnac, Carnac-Ville, is worth a visit after you have explored the mysterious megaliths. The pretty old centre retains its old days charm and has plenty of pretty streets, flower-bedecked old buildings, cosy cafes and excellent restaurants that serve delicious local oysters and hearty traditional dishes. A short walk from the old town is the seaside resort of Carnac-Plage with a 2km-long beautiful sandy beach swept by waves and winds typical for Brittany.

Photos via Flick by: Nicolas Raymond, Jürgen Mangelsdorf, Jérôme Choain.

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