Cancale, Port de la Houle
|• Mayor (2014–2020)||Pierre-Yves Mahieu|
|Area1||12.6 km2 (4.9 sq mi)|
|• Density||420/km2 (1,100/sq mi)|
|INSEE/Postal code||35049 / 35260|
|Elevation||0–56 m (0–184 ft)
(avg. 45 m or 148 ft)
1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km² (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.2 Population without double counting: residents of multiple communes (e.g., students and military personnel) only counted once.
Cancale (Breton: Kankaven; Gallo: Cauncall) is a commune in the Ille-et-Vilaine department in Brittany in northwestern France. It is known as the birthplace of Saint Jeanne Jugan. Inhabitants of Cancale are called Cancalais in French.
Cancale lies along the coast to the east of Saint-Malo. It is a picturesque fishing port popular with visitors, many of whom are drawn by its reputation as the "oyster capital" of Brittany. Though a small town, it is well served by a large number of restaurants, many specialising in seafood. When not eating one can sit and watch the bustle of this busy little town with many stalls selling crustaceans of all types.
Eugène Feyen painted Cancale and the inhabitants with the oyster-picking Cancalaises for several decades around 1865–1908. Vincent van Gogh wrote that "Eugène Feyen is one of the few painters who pictures intimate modern life as it is really, and does not turn it into fashion plates".
History has it that Louis XIV had his oysters brought to Versailles from Cancale. Centuries later, the farming of oysters is still a major activity in the port and there are oyster beds covering about 7.3 square kilometres easily seen from the pier at the harbour. These beds harvest about 25,000 tons of oysters each year.
Twin towns – Sister cities
Cancale is twinned with:
- Communes of the Ille-et-Vilaine department
- Auguste Feyen-Perrin
- Jacques-Eugène Feyen
- The works of Jean Fréour Sculptor of statue depicting Cancale women washing oysters.
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