History junkies book flights to Normandy to experience the significance of the World War II location. Spread along the coastline between Brittany and northeast France, Normandy is known for its restoration of the French Republic, which was a pivotal turning point in the war. The remainder of the region was liberated at the end of the war in 1945 and the Occupation of the Channel Islands ended.
Its gorgeous green countryside is full of fields and farmhouses, reminding most of simpler measures and more relaxing ways of life. Leaving the glitz and spectacle of Paris and entering a world of natural splendor will leave you refreshed and satisfied on your return Normandy flight. The blue waves of La Manche make a perfect balance for what seems like a never ending span of verdant space, and the mix of restaurants and boutiques with yachts and fishing boats blend the perfect concoction of old and new.
No matter when you plan your Normandy trip, you won’t be able to escape without being drenched in history. With a timeline that dates all the way back to William the Conqueror 1066, the region is steeped in European saga, entwining with the Hundred Years War, impressionist art, and D-Day landings in 1944. From town to town, it’s impossible to miss the potent landscape dotted with castles, cathedrals, and gothic churches that demand attention, even from afar.
While some small areas were traumatized in the battle of Normandy, there is plenty to see here so get ready to absorb all that this historical area has to offer.
Normandy celebrates warm, Mediterranean climate that welcomes hot summers (June to August), mild winters (December to February), and strong winds, called La Mistral. There are no direct flights to Normandy so most travelers fly to Nice and make the short commute to Normandy for vacation. Summer can reach 86 degrees and October (the region’s wettest month) usually stays in the cool 50s.
From Normandy you can explore more of France by taking a train to Paris or traveling to small towns and villages by bus. You can fly to Nice or take a ferry over to England or Ireland. Get to the Channel Islands from the docks at Cherbourg, Ouistreham, Le Havre and Dieppe.
Rouen: Striking pyramid rooftops saturate the restored medieval quarter of Rouen, where gothic cathedrals capture the unruly spirit of the middle ages when fire and plague ravaged the infrastructure. Eroded formations have been injured by bombing raids in WWII, but the past 60 years of restoration has braided the aged past with a fresh insight. Elegant structures create a stunning backdrop of a place that was once the Roman city of Rotomagus, and later occupied by the English. In one of these momentous squares, French heroine, Joan of Arc was tried for heresy and burned as the stake in 1431. Even if you’re an expert in history, you’ll leave Normandy having learned a thing or two about its tumultuous past.
Bayeux: Millions of visitors book flights to Normandy to see the marvelous needlework known around the world. The long piece of cloth called “La Tapiserie de la Reine Mathilde” (Tapestry of Queen Matilda) lives in this little town, which was the first place liberated after D-Day, and survived WWII unscathed. Winding streets, gorgeous buildings, and gothic cathedrals border the area, and wooden framed Norman homes hold residents of the quaint space. Head a few minutes north to see the beaches that endured the famous invasions.
D-Day Beaches: The largest military operation in history lures historians to book flights to Normandy and stand ground at Operation Overlord. On June 6, 1944, soldiers from the US, UK, and Canada poured onto French soil, and 76 days of fighting grew into the Battle of Normandy, which led to the liberation of Europe from Nazi occupation. At Caen’s memorial museum, you can see miles of memorabilia relating to the invasion, and more is available at the nearby tourist information center.
Transmusicales: Book flights to Normandy to experience one of France’s best-known festivals. Filled with big names and young hopefuls, Transmusicales combines the oldest and most famous music with innovative new tunes. Bands from around the world fill indoor and outdoor venues in celebration of France’s local music scene. Book flights to Normandy in December to experience the annual fete.