From countless orchards and lush, green pastures to the hills, gorges and wooded valleys further west, every excursion offers a view of something new. Places and items will transfix your attention, from ancient history such as the Bayeux Tapestry, to the iconic beaches of the D-Day landings and the thought provoking cemeteries of those that perished. Fashionable resorts, such as Honfleur, are your doorway to the good life. And for those that like their beaches big, there’s the Côte d’Albatre (Alabaster Coast).
Normandy at a Glance
An ever-popular gateway to northern France and all points south, Normandy is packed with both history and mystery. The region has witnessed legendary battles, but is nowadays better known for spectacular bottles… of its famous cider and Calvados apple brandy. The landscape is varied, the lifestyle unhurried and there’s enough going on to fill your days, whether it’s a short break or your annual holidays.
Your eyes will light up at the lush landscape, the rural charm, with its half-timbered farmhouses, ancient churches and castles. Your other senses will respond to aromas of freshly cooked food and freshly baked bread everywhere you go. But that’s only the half of it. There’s an awesome coastline, peppered with tiny fishing villages, smart resorts and towering white cliffs to match anything Dover can offer.
It’s not selfish to love shellfish and the region is famed for its fresh oysters, scallops and lobsters. Chicken cooked in calvados and cream is a favourite main dish, and what better dessert than ‘Tarte aux Pommes’ followed by the region’s own cheeses. All accompanied with summer’s bumper crop of apples, pressed to make Normandy’s famed cider and most delicious Calvados brandy.
Home to one of Normandy’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites – The Bayeux Tapestry, an 11th century canvas, telling the story of the Norman invasion of England, is a must-see historical document (even though we lost).
For those who like the high life, this elegant seaside town provides a mix of traditional and modern, but with a twist of glamour. A fabulous promenade, great shops, superb beach and a jam-packed cultural events programme keep the town buzzing.
A place of history and legends, Le Mont Saint Michel is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Rising majestically from the middle of its surrounding bay, it is an international place of pilgrimage.
Omaha Beach is perhaps the most famous of the five beaches where Allied forces landed on D-Day in 1944. Relive the hour. Browse the visitor centre and pay tribute to the fallen at the awe-inspiring cemetery.
Rouen is known as “the town with a thousand spires”. It’s where Joan of Arc was martyred and the home of many masterpieces of religious architecture. The city lives, with gastronomic delights, relaxing strolls along the Seine, and numerous boutiques.