coast at Barneville-Carteret, on the west side of the Cotentin
peninsula of Normandy, is warmed by the Gulf Stream and has therefore
been favoured as a holiday area for around 200 years with a wealth
of attractions. Good restaurants (especially for fish and shellfish
lovers with oysters, mussels, shrimps, prawns, scallops and lobster),
glorious sandy beaches (at Barnville and Carteret, Port-bail and
Sciotot near Les Pieux to name but four), peaceful lanes, pretty
market towns and fascinating chateaux and churches are to found
in abundance. Excellent sporting facilities include swimming,
horse riding, dinghy sailing, canoeing, mountain bike riding and
are colourful open-air street markets in Barneville on Saturday
mornings, in Bricquebec on Monday mornings, in Valognes on Friday
and in Les Pieux on Friday mornings (at all of which there are
a wide range of cheeses, fresh vegetables etc).
Cotentin peninsula and the neighbouring Calvados area provide
plenty of major attractions. France produces some four hundred
cheeses and farm tours are available where Camembert, Livarot
and Pont l'Eveque are made by traditional methods in the Normandy
area. The region's apple orchards provide the local drinks of
cider and Calvados (the fiery apple brandy of Normandy).
children there are two zoos within reach (one is towards St Vaast
on the east coast of the peninisular and the second is near Bayeau).
At Caen there is a childrens theme park called Festyland.
- said to boast the largest square in Normandy overlooked by the
impressive 14th Century castle Du Donjon and nearby Trappist monastery.
Sauveur-le-Vicomte - a most attractive town with a castle
and Benedictine abbey. For the more energetic there is white canoeing
on the River Douve. On the outskirts there is a forest, ideal
for walks and picnics.
- the former aristocratic capital of the Cotentin. The town is
known as "petite Versailles" because of its beautiful 18th century
buildings. Here there is a museum dedicated to cider and Calvados.
St Vaast-la-Hougue stand on the peaceful beach, look out
to sea and try to imagine the scale of human loss of the first
American landing point on June 6th 1944. Now a popular destination
for sailing enthusiasts as well as home to a moule fleet it is
also a renowned centre for oyster farming. Just offshore you will
see the Ile de Tatihou, once a leper colony and now a nature reserve.
ancient - but still working - fishing port of Barfleur
from where much of William the Conqueror's fleet set sail for
England in 1066. Richard the Lionheart and his Crusaders also
set sail from Barfleur on their way to the Holy Land.
is well worth a visit. See the old centre of the town with its
magnificent buildings and winding 'secret' passageways evoking
the past together with the modern shopping centre and miles of
lanes filled with bars, restaurants and shops. Call in to the
Tourist Office on the town quayside opposite the swing bridge
(Pont Tournant) to find full details of the many museums (Fine
Art, Maritime, War & Liberation and Natural History) and tourist
attractions. The famous La Cité de La Mer houses the first French
nuclear submarine "La Redoubtable" and is open to visitors - over
10 years old.