Liz Summerson in Brittany, France.
The Île de Batz is a mere fifteen minutes by ferry from the Breton port of Roscoff and, at 5km square, a perfect size to explore on foot. On disembarking, we turned left towards the little streets of the bourg, where the 500-odd inhabitants mostly live. The crowd from the boat dissipates quickly and we were struck by the absence of traffic: not banned, simply unnecessary, apart from a few scooters, tractors and vans.
Surrounded by turquoise sea, with agapanthus and hydrangeas bedecking white and grey cottages, Batz is postcard-pretty. But it’s also a working community with everything in miniature – mairie, school and library. Farming and fishing create income, along with a boulangerie, two mini-markets, B&Bs and restaurants.