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The alignments of Carnac

In the heart of Morbihan, discover a high place of European prehistory. The alignments of Carnac are located northwest of the city of the same name. Carnac is an essential seaside resort in the Gulf of Morbihan, known for its alignments of menhirs but also for its friendly atmosphere and its large sandy beach which stretches over 2 kilometers. The alignments of Carnac include more than 3000 menhirs spread over 4 kilometers and 3 different sites: the alignments of Ménec, Kermario and Kerlescan, between the bay of Plouharne and the river Trinité-sur-Mer. The site of the alignments of Carnac has been classified as a Historic Monument since 1889. From our hotel Le Celtique, it will only take you about 5 minutes by car to reach the site.

The alignments of Carnac: menhirs or dolmens?

The large standing blocks of stone are menhirs. Dolmens are composed of one or more horizontal stone slabs placed on vertical stones. The alignments of Carnac are composed of menhirs, large stones placed vertically and whose use and meaning for our ancestors remains a mystery. Several hypotheses have been considered: the alignments could be a kind of agricultural calendar, an astronomical observatory... They could also be part of a sun cult or represent a border or a place of passage.

Carnac’s
megalithic site

In Morbihan, more than 550 megalithic sites have been identified. The most famous in the region at an age of 7000 years, the megalithic site in Carnac stands as a key site in the study of European prehistory. It has been classed as a “Monument Historique” since 1889.

Nestled in the south of Morbihan, the menhirs of Carnac stand out for their incredible alignment. Built between the 5th and 3rd millennium BC, the two main sites (Ménec and Kermario) alone count nearly 3000 menhirs. These alignments stretch across nearly 4 kilometres! Menhirs, dolmens, tumuli, and other remnants stand as a testament to Neolithic architecture.

Palaeolithic...
what?

Head back in time, and travel across 450,000 years of history from the Palaeolithic era to the time of Roman Gaul, and discover a truly unique collection of 6600 objects dedicated to Neolithic people, builders of dolmens and menhirs.

The Musée de la Préhistoire de Carnac (Carnac Museum of Prehistory) will provide you with everything you need to understand the context and the reasons that drove people to erect enormous stones and to take the time to align them.
With lectures and workshops for both adults and children alike, find out about your ancestors and discover the legends of Carnac.

Visit the alignments of Carnac

Organize your free or accompanied visit to the alignments of Carnac. The self-guided tour is free while the guided tour is chargeable. It is also possible to take the Petit Train Touristique des Alignements, the convertible car Carnac Visio Tour, the Carnac Tuk Tour or even a segway with Mobilboard Carnac. Allow about 1 hour to visit the alignments of Carnac on your own and 30 minutes to 1 hour 30 minutes for a guided tour. The alignments of Carnac are divided into three sites. The Ménec site is the starting point for visits and is located west of Carnac. There is the reception center of the alignments. The site consists of 1050 stones aligned with similar spacing in 3 rows, over approximately 1 kilometer. It is undoubtedly the most representative site of the alignments of Carnac. To the east of Carnac, the site of Kermario impresses with its monoliths and its 1029 menhirs, one of which is 3 meters high. Kermario offers magnificent views from the trails and the top of the Vieux Moulin. Nearby, do not miss to admire the Manio Quadrilateral, with its one meter high granite blocks. It is also here that the Giant of Manio is located, a menhir 6.5 meters high, the largest menhir of all the alignments of Carnac.

Finally, with its 13 rows for 555 menhirs, the Kerlescan site is the smallest of the Carnac alignments. It is also the best preserved. There is an enclosure of 39 menhirs to the west and a mound dominated by a 3.7 meter high menhir to the north. The alignments of Kerlescan are extended by the site of Petit Ménec, made up of a hundred menhirs spread over 8 rows. If the alignments of Carnac are the most famous, Morbihan is home to a total of some 550 megalithic sites. Deepen your knowledge by visiting the Prehistory Museum of Carnac, which offers a collection dedicated to the Neolithic peoples among the richest in Europe.

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