Once the feared base of pirates (corsairs), heavily fortified against Norman (or English) attack, today's Saint-Malo is one of the top tourist draws in Brittany. The citadel, also known as the Old Town or intramuros (“within the walls”), was originally built on a rocky island at the mouth of the Rance estuary. This strategic position allowed control of both the sea and any trade heading into the interior of Brittany, helping to shape the stormy and often dark history of the city.
The star of the show is the walled city (intramuros), largely destroyed in the second world war it has been painstakingly reconstructed. The modern towns of Parame and Saint-Servan lie outside the walls. During the day everyone hits the beaches and at night they come to the intramuros to eat and party until late in the night. They have free concerts every night just to the right of the picture, artists doing sketches and lots of little stores, restaurants and bars.