Languages in Brittany France (Bretagne)

Brittany native language is Breton which takes its roots from its Celtic past which explains some similarities with the Welsh and Cornish languages in the UK. Although not as widely spoken as some would like it to be, there is still about 700,000 native speakers especially in deep Finistère. Although under threat under the third Republic of France, the Breton language is today enjoying an increased interest. It still taught in some schools as a second language and used solely or partially by some media like magazines, radio stations and one TV channel (France 3, only certainly hours of the day).

Road signs in Breton and French languages - Brittany France

The Eastern and Southern parts of Brittany have grown closer to the French culture and you are unlikely to hear Breton spoken there. Despite various efforts to keep the Breton language alive, the official language of Brittany is consequently French. TIn 1985, the majority of bilingual road signs were introduced where you will notice places of Breton names with prefixes or suffixes like roc'h for rocks, mor for sea, aber for estuary, enez for island, kastell for castles, plou for parish or aven for river.

To help you get by, we have put an essential list of basic French words and phrases.

  • Yes - Oui
  • No - Non
  • Thank you - Merci
  • Sorry - Pardon but you have many more phrases you can use. Check the others.
  • Hello - Bonjour
  • Good morning, Good afternoon - Bonjour
  • Good evening - Bonsoir
  • Good night - Bonne nuit
  • Goodbye - Au revoir
  • Good health - Santé
  • Please - S'il vous plaît
  • I would like ... - Je voudrais ...
  • We would like ... - Nous voudrions or On voudrait
  • How much ?, How many ? - Combien ?
  • This one - celui là or Celle-là
  • The bill please - L'addition s'il vous plaît
  • The menu - Le menu or la carte
  • What time is it ? - Quelle heure est-il ? or Avez-vous l'heure ?
  • Where is ... - Où se trouve ...
  • Can you show me the way to ... - Pouvez-vous m'indiquer la direction de ...
  • Left - à gauche
  • Right - à droite
  • Straight on - Tout droit
  • Round-about - Rond-point


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North Brittany
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south brittany
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Brittany Best Beaches
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