Normandy and the D-Day Beaches

Trip Start Aug 01, 2005
Trip End Oct 04, 2005

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Flag of France  ,
Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Highlights of this Entry:
Mèmorial de Caen
D-Day Beach Tour

September 28

We came to Caen, France solely to tour the D-Day beaches of Normandy. However, the beauty of France's countryside and architecture continued to astonish us here in the north. While being the perfect launching point for the beaches, WWII cemeteries and memorials, Caen also happens to hold the castle and final resting place of William the Conquerer.

We spent the day visiting the Mèmorial de Caen...and I do mean the day. The memorial is home to a tremendously large and detailed museum that covers the history of WWI, WWII, and the Cold War. In addition to this, there are three gardens (American, Canadian, and British) that pay homage to soldiers who took part in the liberation of France and who gave their lives for freedom. If that weren't enough, there is also the only exhibition in the world dedicated to the various Nobel Prizes. We went to the museum under the delusion that we would kill a couple of hours there. After five hours, they kicked us out and we had just reached the Cold War section. After a sprint through the American Gardens, we headed back to the city where we enjoyed a delicious rabbit stew for dinner and then hit the sack.

September 29

The actual tour of the beaches is better left described by the pictures and videos. However, I will highlight a couple of interesting things about the tour. Our tour group consisted of five other Americans (one of them was a Wheaton graduate). There were two older couples and both of the men had served in the war (neither had been involved in D-Day). It was a privilege to learn about their military experience and compare it to my own.

The tour took us to the Gold and Omaha beaches as well as several other places of key importance on D-Day. I'll let the visuals (with captions) tell the rest.

After the tour, we hopped on a train for Paris: the last stop on our trip.

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Until next time...Au Revoir
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rickbranstetter on

The pictures were very descriptive of the Normandy invasion. I was surprised at the German cemetary/monument. I suppose I should have considered that they had to be buried somewhere, but not in that area.

I like the fact that some of your pictures were cloudy and cold looking. I think Normandy should look like that, rather than sunny and a 'pleasant' place to visit.

Nice job!

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