Brest, a French city located in the Finistere department and in the Brittany region, is the southernmost military harbour of France. With its 149,000 inhabitants, it ranks the second position of Brittany in terms of population, after Rennes. Its oceanic climate brings mildness in the town all year long. Located at the junction of numerous North-South and East-West sea routes, Brest’s harbour thus holds outstanding water qualities and efficient facilities. Its strategic position makes of Brest one of the best sites in the heart of the Atlantic area and the entrance door of Europe.
Brest is a city with a rich maritime history. Its location - deep in a harbour closed by a narrow setback – allows it to be an exceptional strategic location which always seduces servicemen. Battles followed one another in these waters; indeed a part of the French naval history occurred there and is also recounted in the Museum of the Navy.
Brest’s castle, completed by Vauban - a famous French military engineer - is part of the major monuments of the Brittany region. Together with the Tanguy Tower these are the oldest monuments of Brest. The city, totally destroyed during the Second World War, did not keep the appearance of an old city. However, you may take a walk in Saint-Malo Street where a typical people’s housing of the 18th century reminds the pre-war years’ city. Rebuilt according to a geometrical grid pattern, it now offers straight arterial streets opening themselves towards the sea.
Océanopolis is also worth a visit; this is a park where you will discover the oceans - 42 aquariums with 3,700 cubic metres of seawater, 10,000 animals and 1,000 different species. The National Botanical Conservatory is a unique 40ha area with an international reputation. It collects, conserves and cultivates the rare endangered species coming from islands worldwide.
The majority of properties in Brest are apartments - 72.1% of apartments against 25.1% of individual houses. The percentage of tenants is of 54.1%, which is hugely superior to the national percentage - 39.8%. As a result, Brest is the perfect location for a buy-to-let investment since the demand in rent is almost high. You can find a studio flat - about 15 square metres - for about €30,000, an unbeatable price considering the location! A bargain not to be missed! If you are looking for larger apartments, a 3-room flat will cost about €75,000, a 4-room flat about €100,000 and you may find a 5-room flat from €110,000. Taking into account that 4-room flats are very sought-after, this is the best type of properties to invest in. It will be quickly profitable to you.
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Brest is a pleasant place to settle. There, anxiety is taken the opposite way. Also, the city gathers many attractive curiosities such as its marina, Ocean Park or wild beaches.
Economic sectors: Brest is decisively attached to the sea. Thus, it holds the position of first European pole in terms of sciences and techniques linked to the sea. Indeed, 60% of the French maritime research is based in Brest. Amongst the other principal sectors, we can quote shipbuilding, ship repair, information technology, food industry, life science, mechanics and logistics.
Transport links: the domestic and international market are to hand thanks to efficient communication facilities; international airport, maritime harbour, highways and railway network. Brest’s railway station is daily served by several high speed lines connecting it with Paris’ station. Brest’ bus network is composed of 22 routes amongst which 3 are on demand. The airport is the largest of the Brittany region and represents 45% of the passengers’ traffic. It leads to Ireland, the UK and many other French destinations such as Lyon, Paris or Nice. Finally, Brest’s harbour, especially dedicated to transport in bulk, hydrocarbon and containers, is also used for passenger transport bound for Crozon’s peninsula and Iroise Sea isles.
Festivals: a panoply of festivals are organised in Brest each year to the up-most delight of its residents. Each four years since 1922, Brest welcomes the international festival of the sea, boats and sailors. Since 1988, the town organizes Les Jeudis du Port on Thursdays during the summer during which you can attend concerts for free and street arts on the dock of the commercial harbour. Each year in April the Kevrenn Brest Sant-Mark launches the Ringers’ Springtime which is a music festival. Many others are worth seeing such as the short film European Festival, Atropolis or the Festival des Beaux Dimanches. Not to mention, obviously, all the fest-noz which take place almost each week-end (a traditional and popular Breton celebration).
Museums: here are some of the museums which are worth visiting. The Museum of the Navy, situated in the Castle is the home to a wonderful collection of ship models, paintings and sculptures. The Tanguy Tower Museum is a free city museum displaying historical documents and models recreating the old Brest before 1939. The Museum of Fine Arts gathers European paintings from the end of the 16th century to nowadays. Finally, the Fort Montbarey Memorial Museum tells the Finistere’s history during World War II and the Liberation.
Apartments: apartments are the first type of accommodation used in Brest. Thus choice is so large that it will be easy for you to compare the offers and choose the apartment which fits your needs. In the town centre or at the periphery, small or large, rustic or newly built, each one will be satisfied.
Individual houses: you may find some individual houses in the city or in the Brest area more or less typical from the Brittany region. Most houses in the city have painted walls (often in white), garage, sometimes a garden and above all they are close to all conveniences.
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