The Valley of No Return

Marque Bretagne

The Valley of no return

An exceptional natural site, domain of Morgan le Fay

Walkers, get ready for a perilous adventure!

Not far from the small town of Tréhorenteuc, this valley cut through purple stone is also called Perilous Valley or Valley of False Lovers. Enough to put off more than one hiker! Yet, many embark on the trails of the Valley of No Return, and this enthusiasm certainly has something to do with the beauty and wonder of the place…

False-Lovers’ Rock

The Valley of No Return is better known as the domain of Morgan le Fay. The half-sister of King Arthur, she learned witchcraft from Merlin. She would often pace around the Valley of No Return, impatiently awaiting Guiomar, a knight with whom she was madly in love. One day, Morgan caught her beloved with a young woman. In anger, the fairy took her revenge by turning the two lovers into stone on the crest of the Valley.

These two rocks, bound to each other form the Rocher des Faux-Amants, False Lovers’ Rock. Morgan’s fury did not stop there. In order to punish all men unfaithful in any way, she cast a spell on the whole valley: when crossing the valley, unfortunate souls were trapped for eternity without notions of time and space. It was Lancelot du Lac, a brave knight who was faithful to the promises of love made to queen Guinevere, who broke the spell, forcing Morgan to release her prisoners. But who knows, perhaps this powerful enchantress still works her magic around here…

The Fairies’ Mirror

At the entrance of the Valley of No Return, the still surface of a lake, the Fairies’ Mirror, seems to mark the border between dreams and reality. Where is up? Where is down?

The body of water nestled at the bottom of the valley used to feed a mill. Its waters, “white and clear as silver” are said to have been the home of seven fairy sisters. One day, drawn by her curiosity, the youngest approaches a man and falls madly in love. The two lovers share some sweet moments in secret before the other fairies find out and decide to get revenge… As you know by now, fairies can be quite ruthless! But if you look into the Fairies Mirror, perhaps you will glimpse their faces…

The Tree of Gold

In the lower part of the Valley of No Return, in the village of Paimpont, the Tree of Gold is a work of art designed by François Davin in 1991. In 1990, a dreadful fire devastated over 400 hectares of moors. This tree covered in actual gold leaf represents the rebirth of the forest, but also the fragile and precious nature of the forest. It is surrounded by five trees burnt to ashes that symbolise the disappearance of nature.

 

 

 

Merlin’s Seat

A rather peculiar schist rock veined with quartz sits on the slopes of the Valley of No Return. Possibly the spine of a dragon or Merlin’s seat…

ACCESS

  • To access the Valley of No Return, you must cross the pretty little town of Tréhorenteuc. Alternatively, to get off the beaten track, you can depart from Vivien’s house.
  • During the hunting season (30 September to 30 March), access is prohibited in the lower part of the Valley of No Return.

Accessibility

  • The site is accessible to persons with reduced mobility.
  • Baby carriers can be rented from the Tourist Office (7€ for a day or half-day). Bookings can be made through the Tourist Office.

Click here to download the map of legendary sites and trails 

A few pictures

Brocéliande - The Valley of No Return and the Tree of Gold The Valley of No Return The Valley of No Return and the Fairies' Mirror - Crédit : Philippe Manguin The Valley of No Return - Panorama The Valley of No Return - Moorland The Valley of No Return - The False-Lovers' Rock Guided Tour - The Valley of No Return Balade contée - Arbre d'Or Guided Tour - The Valley of No Return The Tree of Gold