Paris-->Caen-->Bayeux-->Colleville-sur-Mer in 1day

Trip Start Sep 02, 2010
Trip End May 13, 2011

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Thursday, March 3, 2011

So the first weekend after I got home from February travel break, on February 26, my friend Tyler and I went to Normandy.
Our saturday started off waking up around 4:30am. We caught the first train into Paris at 5:30am. The train then left from Gare du Nord at 7:30am. It was a 2 hour ride to the town of Caen. When we reached Caen we walked around blindly for a while trying to figure out how to get to Bayeux. Our goal was to get to the landing beaches and see the American Cemetary (Colleville-sur-Mer). It was now around 10am. We finally figured out we needed to take another train from there to get to Bayeux. This was about a 15 minute train ride.
Of course one of the main reasons for this trip was, not only was I excited and interested to visit Normandy, but I did it for Grandpa too. After talking to him about the trip he said that Bayeux had been one of the towns they had been in for a while. And seeing pictures from the memorial center at the cemetary, it was extremely torn up, having been invaded and occupied. Since we had to wait another 45 minutes for the actual bus that would finally take us to the cemetary, we walked around the town. It was a cute little town and the thought of where we were and what actually took place here started to sink in more and more.
The weather started out looking extremely scary and looked at though it was going to pour. As we got closer to the ocean the clouds disappeared and it turned into a beautiful sunny day.
The bus rid lasted about half an hour. It was an extremely scenice ride with hilly green fields,and cute old French cottages. A picturesque view of France along the coast.
As we walked through the entrance into the grounds of the cemetary, the drizzle stopped, the clouds went away completely, and the sun came out. The visitor's center was a really nice place. We went through there first and looked at all of the artifacts they had and the story of everything that happened. We walked outside and right there was the English Channel. It was an extremely beautiful view. Everything here was beautiful. The landscape was amazing. The beach(es) were huge, and the cliffs stood in the distance. We walked down a path down the huge hill to the beaches, almost walking through a forest. According to grandpa, it was exactly the same when he landed on those beaches. We walked along Omaha beach towards Utah Beach. Yes, the water was cold. We walked up and down the beach and on our way back up the hill stopped at an old bunker that was still standing. Like I said before, to imagine everything that happened here, and only 65 years ago, was crazy to think about, and it was hard to believe we were actually standing there.
We reached the top of the hill and walked into the cemetary. The thousands of crosses standing against the ocean in the background was an amazing view. Pictures don't do anything justice.
Since we only made this a one day trip we had to be back in Caen by 7 to go back to Paris. We were at the beaches for about 4 hours then headed back to Bayeux. We walked around the town for an hour until our train to Caen. Then the ride back to Paris. We were home by 11pm.
Normandy was among one of my favorite places so far. It was an amazing place to visit. And all I can give you now is the pictures!

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