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So after a very successful father son visit to the ww2 museum in New Orleans, my dad is now planning and set on finally going to normandy after I graduate from my Masters program in May.

 

So far he has us in Arromanches, Honflour, and Etretat. He has asked me if these are the correct cities or if there are other cities pertaining to d-day we need to be focusing on.

 

For those who have been over there, what cities do you recommend for the full d-day experience?

 

Other suggestions like sites and museum are welcome, he's just trying to figure out what cities we need to be basing from for our itinerary.

Wanted: Missouri Medals

 

I am always in search of Missouri Medals and Items. This could be anything from WW1, WW2, Prisoners of War, Ephemera, or anything pertaining to Missourians.

 

I thank you for your time and consideration.

 

-Without a witness, they just disappear.-

 

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Hi,

 

I just returned from a two week holiday in Normandy.

Arromanches is okay, but you sure want to go to Utah beach, St-Mere Eglise and Omaha beach, and lots of places in between.

Honfleur and Etretat are nice places, but not much in common with the landings or the battles after that.

I can recommend to museum at St-Marie en Come (if you are in the Airborne history), or the Overlord museum at Colleville sur mur.

If you are into British I must recommend the Pegasus bridge and annex museum, and the little museum at Ouistreham about the French commando's.

There are plenty more museum's, and even more memorials to see.

If I may suggest, do plenty of research, theres lot's of info on the net.

To end, we also drove to Cherbourg just to visit the Maritime museum and catch a glimps of the recovered gunbarrel of the CSS Alabama.

 

enjoy your trip.

 

Guy

I welcome anything on US Army WW2 Railway Operating Bn, especially the 712th.

Researching visits of USS Niagara and USS Sacramento summer of 1864 in Antwerp.

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Thanks guy,

 

As the historian picking sites and museums is easy. Where I lack is the tourist side, which cities are best for hotels, basing to the sites, touristy...hence my question about cities to use as bases of operations. Thanks.

Wanted: Missouri Medals

 

I am always in search of Missouri Medals and Items. This could be anything from WW1, WW2, Prisoners of War, Ephemera, or anything pertaining to Missourians.

 

I thank you for your time and consideration.

 

-Without a witness, they just disappear.-

 

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Alright, I see.

 

I think Cherbourg, St-Lo and Caen are nice cities for hotels, though some villages by the coast have them too.

Have no idea about prices though. I guess depends on when during the season.

We toured in our camper, so no need for a hotel there.... :dry:

 

Guy

I welcome anything on US Army WW2 Railway Operating Bn, especially the 712th.

Researching visits of USS Niagara and USS Sacramento summer of 1864 in Antwerp.

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What you need to remember is that the Normandy invasion area is big! People often mistakenly think of it as a series of interconnected neat little beaches, but it's an entire coastline which will take you some time to traverse end to end in a day...access to a car to get around is essential. I've been there myself many times so know the layout quite well. If you want the full Normandy experience you need to break it up into bite-size chunks and, rather than stay in one hotel (impractical) it's best to spend a day or two in several hotels as you move from area to area. It can be quite an exhausting schedule.

"We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be. We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender!"

 

Winston Churchill

" Life is what happens to you when you're busy making other plans."

John Winston Lennon

 

 

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What you need to remember is that the Normandy invasion area is big! People often mistakenly think of it as a series of interconnected neat little beaches, but it's an entire coastline which will take you some time to traverse end to end in a day...access to a car to get around is essential. I've been there myself many times so know the layout quite well. If you want the full Normandy experience you need to break it up into bite-size chunks and, rather than stay in one hotel (impractical) it's best to spend a day or two in several hotels as you move from area to area. It can be quite an exhausting schedule.

Yes a car is a must, we knew that. Yeah I've been looking closely at maps and site locations to cities. Seems like it's almost best to start at one end and work your way east or west. As you said, staying in a different city every couple nights.

 

What we're trying to figure out is what cities are best to stay in?

 

And as an added thought, do y'all prefer to travel east...doing american first and ending with Canadian/british...or do you prefer going west, and ending with american and or st mere eglise?

 

Thanks for the travel suggestions guys.

Wanted: Missouri Medals

 

I am always in search of Missouri Medals and Items. This could be anything from WW1, WW2, Prisoners of War, Ephemera, or anything pertaining to Missourians.

 

I thank you for your time and consideration.

 

-Without a witness, they just disappear.-

 

donation2020.gif

 

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There are just two cities really...Caen and Bayeux....both inland. Caen is in the centre, Bayeux is a little closer to the American sector, but was a British prize. Apart from that there are the various coastal towns. Port en Bessin is good base...it's on the nominal dividing line between the US and British sectors. It's a small fishing port but there is a decent tourist hotel there. ( It doubled as Ouistreham in the movie "The Longest Day" when the French commandos attacked the casino)

"We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be. We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender!"

 

Winston Churchill

" Life is what happens to you when you're busy making other plans."

John Winston Lennon

 

 

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Just looked over a map detailing the site locations. Dad had us in aramonches, Honflour, and etrete. Looking at the map, I'd almost go the other direction, aramonches, verville sur mere, and st mere eglise. I think dad would prefer the quant towns over Caen or bayeux unless there is a better reason to be stationed in the cities.

Wanted: Missouri Medals

 

I am always in search of Missouri Medals and Items. This could be anything from WW1, WW2, Prisoners of War, Ephemera, or anything pertaining to Missourians.

 

I thank you for your time and consideration.

 

-Without a witness, they just disappear.-

 

donation2020.gif

 

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Sorry for all the questions guys....

 

As dad and I keep discussing this, things keep coming up.

 

I've grown fond of the idea of these quant bnb along the coast that are smack in the center of all the historical stuff. My dad on the other hand had a concern that they aren't close to things like resteraunts, ect. With that he's been focusing more on cities like Honflour. Either way we both like the local flavor bnb vs major hotels.

 

I told him I've noticed this too and it seems to break down like this....you either stay in the middle of all the sites and then have to travel to your food, amenities, ect...or you stay near the amenities and travel to the sites.

 

Has anyone else noticed this or recommend ways to deal with it?

Wanted: Missouri Medals

 

I am always in search of Missouri Medals and Items. This could be anything from WW1, WW2, Prisoners of War, Ephemera, or anything pertaining to Missourians.

 

I thank you for your time and consideration.

 

-Without a witness, they just disappear.-

 

donation2020.gif

 

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Honfleur is a picturesque port on the Seine estuary famous for being a mecca for famous artists. It's right out on the eastern fringe of the invasion area. The British / Canadian beaches are closest....maybe 15km or so along the coast to Ouistreham where the French Commandos landed? However, if your focus is the American beaches and liberated towns / museuems etc., they are a long way off on the other side of the bay of the Seine!

"We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be. We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender!"

 

Winston Churchill

" Life is what happens to you when you're busy making other plans."

John Winston Lennon

 

 

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Hi,

 

Normandy is a really good place for vacation.

 

The central town to visit Normandy WW2 landing beachs is Bayeux. But you are inland ( In Bayeux you have also the great tapestry : the story of another landing) and the city is really great.

If you want a sea side you can choose Port en Bessin a nice little harbour. Avoid Luc sur mer.

 

After you have to rent a car or hire a guide to travel between all the sites (for exemple count 1 hour to travel from Arromanches to Pegasus bridge).

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Hi,

 

Normandy is a really good place for vacation.

 

The central town to visit Normandy WW2 landing beachs is Bayeux. But you are inland ( In Bayeux you have also the great tapestry : the story of another landing) and the city is really great.

If you want a sea side you can choose Port en Bessin a nice little harbour. Avoid Luc sur mer.

 

After you have to rent a car or hire a guide to travel between all the sites (for exemple count 1 hour to travel from Arromanches to Pegasus bridge).

Thanks Maza,

 

Yeah we are renting a car. That's a must. In doing research we've refined some. We were in Arromanches, Honflor, and etrete....we are now at Arromanches, a bnb on omaha beach in saint lourent sur mere, and st mere eglise. We've also managed to narrow down our sites and zone of travel between Arromanches and st mere eglise.

Wanted: Missouri Medals

 

I am always in search of Missouri Medals and Items. This could be anything from WW1, WW2, Prisoners of War, Ephemera, or anything pertaining to Missourians.

 

I thank you for your time and consideration.

 

-Without a witness, they just disappear.-

 

donation2020.gif

 

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I highly recommend you make a stop at the military musuem in Paris. It's huge, and has lots of interesting exhibits. Napoleon's Tomb is also there

I've already been there. Thanks though :)

Wanted: Missouri Medals

 

I am always in search of Missouri Medals and Items. This could be anything from WW1, WW2, Prisoners of War, Ephemera, or anything pertaining to Missourians.

 

I thank you for your time and consideration.

 

-Without a witness, they just disappear.-

 

donation2020.gif

 

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I stayed in Bayeux at a wonderful little place, "Hôtel d'Argouges". Bayeux, at least by my "big-city" standards, is a wonderfully quiet little town and you'd do fine staying there.

It's still super early but I think we've narrowed our hotel/bnb to Arromanches, st lourent sur mere, and st. Mere eglise. I do see however that it can be chilly on the coast in May. Will have to look into a windbreak/sweater. Would it be similar to autumn weather here in the United States?

Wanted: Missouri Medals

 

I am always in search of Missouri Medals and Items. This could be anything from WW1, WW2, Prisoners of War, Ephemera, or anything pertaining to Missourians.

 

I thank you for your time and consideration.

 

-Without a witness, they just disappear.-

 

donation2020.gif

 

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After visiting the American Cemetery at Colleville Sur Mer, we quite by accident came upon the La Cambe German military cemetery. I seem to recall it's only a short distance from the American Cemetery. Over 20,000 souls are buried here. Without describing, I just have to highly recommend that you include this melancholy and impressive place on your visit.

 

Husband Tom and I were so fortunate to have visited the Normandy area twice. We have always wished to have been able to stay months there.

 

Lynne

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I'd say so. It is pretty chilly on the coast, so bring a sweater or heavy jacket especially when you visit the beaches. St. Mere Eglise is beautiful and a worthwhile visit.

 

I confirm May could be chilly on the coast.

Remember also you are not far from Cobra battle fields and Falaise.

 

You have also the Formigny Battle Field (one of the last HYM battle).

 

If you manage to be in Paris, try to visit the WWI Meaux Museum.

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Hi

 

Just to perhaps echo what some already said already.

If you like to walk, explore and spend time at places you will need 1 - 2 days in Utah beach/ Airborne area, 1 day in Omaha and 1-2 days in British sector.

 

There are hundreds of B&B's, but please remember Normandy isn't Vegas so after dark all the towns and villages are like ghost towns. It means if you are staying in the countyside you will have to travel to find dinner.

 

The top museums for me are the following:

Dead Mans Corner - St Come Du Mont - Airborne - The best museum in quality and attraction in Normandy in my opinion.

Overlord Museum - Colleville Sur Mer - Great mixture of uniforms and vehicles set in huge diarama's.

Big Reg One Museum - Colleville Sur Mer - Top Quality collection of 1st Infantry division items

Pegasus Bridge Museum - Ranville - Amazing British airborne musuem

Airborne Museum - St Mere Eglise - Qustionable uniforms in places, but the new extension is worth a visit.

 

You must visit the US cemetry in Colleville, Utah Beach, Omaha Beach, WN30 at Omaha - The best view in Normandy... There are hundreds of interesting locations depending on your focus. If you have time during your trip do go to Mont St Micheal.

 

I have stayed in Bayeux a few times it is a nice town, plenty of places to eat and drink beer, is about 15 mins from beaches, 40mins from US airborne area's. Out of choice i stay in B&B's in the US airborne sector as i prefer the countryside...

 

If you have any other questions please do not hesitate to ask.

Regards

 

 

Tom

THE OVERLORD COLLECTION


a virtual museum at theoverlordcollection.co.uk

www.m-1helmets.co.uk

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