The best entry point for Normandy from abroad is Paris, which offers the most flight connections. In Normandy, places worth visiting are not particularly close to each other, and traffic is significantly better than in the capital or in the Riviera, so it’s a good idea to rent a car in Paris and do a road trip in Normandy. Drive yourself if you like, but of course having a chauffeur will allow you to relax and better appreciate the landscape. If you prefer flying a private jet, you can go deeper into Normandy by using airports in Le Havre, Caen and Saint-Malo in neighbouring Brittany.
Climate & seasons
Unless you like cold and damp weather, you will want to avoid winter. Come in any other season and you may find rain, but will most likely have some sunshine as well. In summer it doesn’t really get hot — maximum temperatures are around 23°C — but many French feel it’s warm enough for basking on the shore and a dip in the sea.
Where to go
The most famous site in Normandy is probably the monastery-citadel of Mont Saint-Michel — it’s an unique architectural jewel, and definitely worth a visit. If you like military history, you will be awed to stand on the windswept D-Day beaches just north of Caen, and walk among the soldiers’ graves at the WWII cemeteries. At Bayeux the famous tapestry tells of history much more ancient, and in the streets of medieval Rouen your heart will weep for brave Joan of Arc. Maybe you are more into art than history, and in that case you will want to visit Monet’s garden in Giverny — if you decide for a road trip, this can be your first stop as you enter Normandy. If fashion is your thing, don’t miss Christian Dior’s childhood home in Granville. And whatever your preferences are, do check out Deauville, the premier seaside resort in the region.
What to do
Travel along the coast to discover the impressive Étretat cliffs, the secret haunt of fictional criminal Arsène Lupin. Then stand on the landing beaches where thousands of real-life soldiers fought and died so that Europe could be free, and pay your respects to their bravery in the cemeteries where their bodies were buried. Go back in time to the days of the Normans as you admire the scenes woven in the 68-metre long tapestry of Bayeux, then roam the medieval streets of Rouen and Harfleur. Tour Mont Saint-Michel, then hover above it in a helicopter. Meet farmers, and taste and learn all about camembert cheese.
Photos from Normandy
EliteVoyage Hotel Collection in Normandy
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