St Malo

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St. Malo is a walled city port in Brittany. Historically it was notorious for piracy, being home to the infamous ‘Corsairs’ – privateers who roamed the English Channel forcing ships to pay tribute. Wealth also came from further afield; Jacques Cartier is credited with discovering Canada and sailors from St. Malo were the first to colonise the Falkland Islands (hence ‘Malvinas’ or ‘Malouines’) and to successfully navigate Cape Horn. The best places to stay in St. Malo enable the traveller to soak in this dashing past which is reflected in the beaches, buildings and ramparts of the town.

Today St. Malo is a major tourist destination. Its population of 150,000 can swell to 200,000 during the season. There is much to see and do. The town has one of the highest concentrations of restaurants in Europe and oysters are a particular speciality.

According to one travel writer ‘the dense labyrinth of dressed stone speaks of the power, wealth and shamelessness of the 17th and 18th centuries’. There are innumerable sites of interest; the walled city, the Solidor Tower, the tomb of Chateaubriand, the Cathedral of St. Vincent, the great Aquarium, the list goes on.

Dinard, the ‘Nice du Nord’ with its princely villas and links golf lies across the eastury. The magical Mont St. Michel is a short drive away.

Transport links are excellent. There is the ferry terminal, airport 5km to the South and the TGV to Paris, Rennes etc. Which means that the best places to stay in St Malo make a brilliant stop off point either on your way to discover more of France or on your way home.....though the town merits at least a couple of days stop over.

The best places to stay in St. Malo

For period charm

  • L’Ascott is a beautiful 18th century mansion situated in the Saint Servan district of St. Malo. It boats a lovely secluded garden for enjoying drinks or breakfast and the central location provides an ideal base for exploring the town and surrounding area.
  • Malouiniere Le Valmarin is a former ship owner's residence dating from the 18th century and is set in a wooded park 50m from the beach. It has 12 spacious bedrooms and exudes warmth, comfort and refinement.

For those on a budget

  • The Beaufort enjoys a prime position on the seafront near the centre of St.Malo. The contemporary guestrooms of the hotel showcase breathtaking water views and all from only €79 per night!

Out of Town

  • The Auberge de la Motte Jean (Nr. Cancale) is set in a beautiful, typically French style garden. The hotel has a sophisticated atmosphere. It is a short walk from the beach. Easily one of the best places to stay in St Malo (or nearby) if you're looking for a beach break.


  • The Manoir de Rigurdaine lies on the Emerald coast and has panoramic views over the beautiful estuary towards St. Malo. The hotel is full of character with hundred year old beams, open fires and a billiard room.
  • The Hotel Printania is also on the seafront, looking over the river Rance to St. Malo. This restaurant with rooms offers gourmet cuisine and a relaxed vibe, all accompanied by fabulous views! It's great value too.

Still not sure? Browse our list of the best places to stay in St Malo or call or email one of our friendly gurus for some advice. Alternatively check out all our recommendations in Brittany for further inspiration.

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The best hotels in St Malo

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  • Auberge de la Motte Jean

    Saint-Coulomb, Brittany

    A charming renovated farmhouse. Cosy rooms feature wooden furniture and rustic fabrics. Gardens, terrace and bar. A short drive from the beaches of northern France. Perfect for an understated country escape with plenty of coastal activities.

    13 rooms from $100
    Country Escape  -  Beaches are just over two kilometres away, and the atmosphere at this hotel is very relaxed
    Sailing  -  Sailing trips available from Saint-Malo
    Sights nearby  -  Cancale and Saint-Malo
    Great walks  -  Good for walkers.
  • Hotel Beaufort

    St-Malo, Brittany

    Seafront townhouse hotel in St Malo. Contemporary rooms with private sea facing balconies and all the modern gadgetry. A lovely lounge bar with a terrace for watching the sun go down.

    22 rooms from $89
    On the beach  -  Direct access to the beach
    Views  -  Fantastic sea views
    Great walks  -  Good for walkers.
    Sights nearby  -  Well located for major sights.
  • Malouiniere le valmarin

    St-Malo, Brittany

    An elegant hotel with the feel of a country manor yet in the centre of St Malo. Graceful toile de jouy dressed bedrooms and family suites. Beautiful garden, neighbouring beaches, spas, restaurants, and watersports. A great choice for families and those on a budget.

    8 rooms from $112
    Sailing  -  Can be booked nearby.
    Local markets  -  Good for local colour.
    Sights nearby  -  Well located for major sights.
    Recommended by  -  Sawdays
  • Manoir de Rigourdaine

    Plouër-sur-Rance, Brittany

    An excellent characterful three-star hotel in a glorious position. Beautiful stone farmhouse with simple airy bedrooms, private terraces, Persian rugs, bright colours and antiques. A lofty beamed breakfast room serves delicious French cuisine. Ideally situated for access to the Emerald Coast.

    19 rooms from $118
    Country Escape  -  An old country estate with views of the Brittany estuary and rolling hillside plus cosy converted bar/barn.
    Great walks  -  There are many hiking trails running through the surrounding countryside, ask your host for details.
    Local markets  -  There are a number of local markets open throughout the week, at Dinan, Dinard and St Malo.
    Fishing  -  The hotel gives guests access to their private fishing area, but bring your own rods!
    Recommended by  -  Sawdays, Fodors
  • L'Ascott

    Saint-Malo, Brittany

    A charming little hotel in Saint-Malo within easy reach of lovely beaches. Contemporary chic rooms in muted tones with parquet floors, luxury bedding, and all the mod cons. A really pleasant spot for a weekend break near the beach.

    10 rooms from $123
    Views  -  The Bay of St Malo is beautiful.
    Sights nearby  -  Explore the neighbourhoods of Solido, Intra Muros.
    Sailing  -  Can be booked nearby.
    Great walks  -  Good for walkers.
  • Chateau du Colombier

    Saint-Malo, Brittany

    A lovely castle with beautiful architecture that dates back to 1715 built by a ship manager of the East India Company. High ceilings, four poster beds, period furniture and intricate chandeliers add to the old world charm. A fine dining restaurant with wonderful views of the lush gardens.

    15 rooms from $153
    Local exploring  -  In a splendid quiet location, close to the city centre, yet moments away from the beautiful beaches in the Brittany region.
    Writing a novel  -  Sit out in the lovely gardens and be inspired by the poetic location and peaceful atmosphere.
    Sights nearby  -  Check out the Saint-Malo Cathedral and the 18th century La Demeure de Corsaire - a privateers house and museum.
    Local markets  -  Walk and explore the interesting cobbled streets of the old town.
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