Quelmer Boat Graveyard – Saint-Malo, France - Atlas Obscura

Quelmer Boat Graveyard

Old vessels have been transformed into artistic canvases in this unusual cemetery. 

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Tucked within a cove is a poignant reminder of the sailors and boats that once sailed the Rance. It harkens back to a time when the vessels created in the nearby shipyards were the pride of the valley.

The abandoned boats rust and rot atop the sand, gnawed by the water. It’s no wonder artists have been drawn to the beach. In the past, they’ve been invited to use the decaying hulls as their canvases. One artist, a local named Kalvez, created a beautiful piece called “The Sleeping Beauty” on one of the boats.

For a time, the boat graveyard was a somber reminder of a lost industry. But in recent years, a new shipyard sprung up across the cove, once again igniting the industry. Working boats, too, are anchored in the cove, adding another touch of life to the scene.

Know Before You Go

A 4.6-mile (7.5 kilometers) pedestrian loop takes you from Troctin Cove to Saint-Elier. This route passes by La Passagère, the neighboring village.