First snow of the year in Normandy

First snow of the year in Normandy

Some parts of Normandy has their first flurry of snow this morning. This great picture courtesy of the Abbeys Normandes Facebook page shows the Abbaye Soligny-la-Trappe which can be found in the Orne region of Normandy. The abbey dates from the 12th century and was rebuilt in a neo Gothic style in the 19th century. For more information about the abbey visit www.latrappe.fr

This is just one of the many abbeys to be found in Normandy. Visit the Abbeys Normandes Facebook page for more photos.

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Normandy Towns and Villages

If you're thinking of planning a visit to Normandy, the Normandy Towns AndVillages collection is an excellent place to start. Normandy is divided into two administrative regions: Lower Normandy and Upper Normandy although will become one region on 1 January 2016. It covers 30,627 km² (11825 sq mi) with a population of around 3.45 million.

Upper Normandy (Haute-Normandie) consists of the French departments of Seine-Maritime and Eure, and Lower Normandy (Basse-Normandie) of the departments of Orne, Calvados, and Manche.

Access to the UK is easy via a choice of Normandy ports – Cherbourg, Caen, Dieppe and Le Havre. The towns and villages collection will allow you to discover this beautiful region.

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The chateau at Nacqueville

The chateau at Nacqueville

The chateau is tucked away in a green and coastal valley just 15 minutes west of Cherbourg in Normandy. Construction started in 1510 and originally a high wall surrounded it. The wall was demolished in the 18th and 19th centuries to reveal the splendour of the chateau. The gatehouse still remains. In 1830 the gardens were developed with the help of an English landscape architect. The extensive grounds were filled with a mix of exotic shrubs, azaleas, hydrangeas and rhododendrons. although it suffered damage in the 20th century, it has been lovingly restored and is open to the public. More information at www.nacqueville.com

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Beach huts in Normandy

Beach huts in Normandy

These charming white beach huts with shutters and doors in varying shades of blue are in Barneville-Carteret in Normandy. The towns of Barneville-sur-mer and Carteret developed as seaside resorts from the 1870s onwards and combined into one town in 1965. Today the endless stretches of beaches are popular during the summer months. This photo was taken in November – the sun really does shine in Normandy!

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Celebrating La Toussaint

Celebrating La Toussaint

November 1st is 'la Toussaint' – (All Saints Days) in France and is a contraction of the phrase ’ Tous les Saints’. It’s the day when people mourn their dead, go to special church services, visit cemeteries and and put fresh flowers on their loved ones' graves. Chrysanthemums are usually chosen and they are everywhere at this time of year. The photo shows the decorations in the main square in Coutances in Normandy.

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Stained glass window in Barfleur church

Stained glass window in Barfleur church

The small fishing village of Barfleur is described as one of Normandy's prettiest villages. This stained glass window commemorates the village being liberated on 21 June 1944. The style is very modern and shows Barfleur's harbour and skyline.

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The cloister at Mont St Michel

The cloister at Mont St Michel

The cloister’s function was to provide access to all the essential rooms: the refectory, kitchens, church, dormitory, chapter hall and the archives. Only the north gallery, looking out towards the sea, was not meant to serve as a way of communication with other rooms. The principal functions of monastic life, except for work and reception, were therefore distributed around the cloister. It also served as the place set aside for the monk’s personal meditation.

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Granville high town

Granville high town

This interesting building in Granville high town in Normandy is full of charm. With its turret and half timbered facade, it perches on the edge of a square opposite the church. The rear of the building looks south towards the harbour and views towards Mont St Michel.

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Guided tours of Old Bayeux and the cathedral during the October holidays

Guided tours of Old Bayeux and the cathedral during the October holidays

Visiting Normandy during the October holidays? From 19 – 30 October you can take a guided tour to discover the old town or the cathedral. The cathedral tour will allow you access to the treasure room and chapter house which are usually closed to the public. The tour around Old Bayeux will explore the area around the cathedral and the historic centre with its timber-framed houses and manors. Details of timings and charges from www.bayeux-bessin-tourisme.com. Under 10s go free.

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