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Week in Paris - day trip to Normandy?

We're going to spend six nights in Paris in September and my husband would love to see Normandy. I would like to, too, but I'm wondering how much time it will take for the tour. Anyone have an opinion? Also, if you have experience with tour providers, let me know. Thanks!

Posted by
1162 posts

You might go to www.tripadvisor.com and get on the Normandy forum. Lots of advice there. It's a very long day to attempt Normandy, assuming you mean the D Day beaches, but possible. Most local tours leave from Bayeux around 8AM and you likely cannot get there that early from Paris. Many prefer to overnight in Bayeux arriving by train from Paris and return by train after the tour. There are tour companies that arrange tours directly from Paris but we've always spent several days in Normandy so only used tours from Bayeux.

Posted by
237 posts

HI-I would do it. Normandy is breathtaking, and I agree with the above posts-long day, overnight is better, but if you can only do one day, it is well worth the trip. Check with your concierge-if you are in a hotel-or online, as the above traveler suggests. Many, many day trips, and you will not be sorry! Happy travels

Posted by
19 posts

Thank you for your responses! I had checked with mygenieinparis.com and found a tour but it didn't indicate how long the trip was. Any idea how long a drive it is to the location? Hours on a bus can be draining.

Posted by
19 posts

there are day trips to normandy from paris. you take the train from gare st lazare to caen and are picked up at the station there. you visit the very good "peace museum" in caen, containing lots of WWII history and beyond, then are taken in a mini bus to the beaches with a very good guide. at the end of the day you are returned to the train station and arrive back in paris 9:30 or 10:00 in the evening i think. a big day but worth it. tour companies for this are listed in rick steves paris guidebook. i told friends about it, they did it and said it was great.

Posted by
9110 posts

Driving from central Paris to Bayeux is an easy three hours; a bit less to Caen. If it's a day trip, coming back into the city in the dark can be a bit sporty - - if that's the case, you'd probably want to dump the car at Nord.

Posted by
19 posts

Thank you Shona, that's just what I was hoping for!

Posted by
1 posts

Definitely worth the trip to Normandy. As another poster mentioned, you can't get there early enough from Paris to meet most tours. However, we booked a private tour with Roel at Victory Tours (http://lignerolles.homestead.com/). He'll pick you up at the train station in his van and will give you a great, personalized tour. He took us to many places that larger tours don't hit. He has incredible knowledge of the area and was the highlight of our trip to France/England. I highly recommend him. All that said, if you can do more than a day tour, I would recommend it. While we saw a ton in our day, I would have loved to have spent 2-3 full dwelling and absorbing the sights.

Posted by
15 posts

I agree with Grady. We did this 18 months ago. Victory Tours was fabulous. Book soon. We got lucky with a cancellation but thsat's rare. Do not miss the tapestry in Bayeau if you enjoy history and antiquities. We left Paris on an early AM train. about 6. It would be nice to stay over but not necessary. It was one of the most moving days we have ever spent in Europe. Worth the effort.Have a grand time.
Sheila