The original Normans were fierce Vikings who made their way through Europe and eventually conquered the English. Most people, the world over, know Normandy as the landing site for the Allied Invasion on June 6, 1944. Despite this turbulent history, Normandy is a place of wonder and beauty tucked away in Northern France.
The coastline of Normandy is kissed by the English Channel, giving it a softer feel than
coastlines by the ocean. The northern-most coastlines are lined with chalky cliffs and as you
move west of the Seine they become flatter and sandier (which is why they were chosen for the Allied Invasion). As you move inland, you travel through farmland and rolling meadows through an area of the world that allied invaders travelled through after the invasion on their quest to save the world.
Throughout Normandy, there are beautiful sites to see that display the history and culture of
the area. There are stunning sites along the Seine like Richard the Lionhearts castle at Les
Andelys and the waterlily heaven that inspired Monet at Giverny. There are the cathedrals of
places like Rouen and Coutances, the abbey of Mont St. Michel, and beautiful port towns along the coast. Some of the best things to see in Normandy are those that pertain to this historic place in relation to its’ role in World War II.
June 6, 1944 is a day that is known the world over as D-Day. It was the beginning of the end for the Axis powers and their control in Europe. This invasion began on the sandy beaches of Normandy, where you can stand on the beaches where the Allied forces landed. Every year, there are commemoration ceremonies so that these deeds are never forgotten. There are also a host of breath-taking museums, monuments, and cemeteries that will communicate the gravity and reality of that day.
Normandy is one place that people should visit. There is only so much that can be gained from reading about D-Day in a book or looking at pictures. There is a whole different feeling that wells within a traveler when they put themselves on the same beaches or tour the cemeteries of men who fought and died for the world. It is a beautiful place that will bring history to life.
That historic day in 1944 shaped the world we live in now and, given the opportunity, you
should travel there to appreciate those acts.