The events of 6 June 1944 may be long gone, but the remnants of that day live on all along France’s Normandy coastline. Here are four excellent tours of the area from Paris.
Still the largest ever seaborne invasion, D-Day will forever be one of the most significant dates in the history books. Many poignant reminders of the losses inflicted on both sides, including rows of austere white crosses and the leftover apparatus of war, tell an important story. Paris is over three hours from the Normandy coastline and many of these long day trips schedule a number of stops at various museums, memorials and monuments to provide a valuable overview of the region.
Normandy D-Day Landing Beaches Tour with Lunch
This first top tour of Normandy from Paris is designed to walk guests through the D-Day landings, discovering the salient details of the US Army’s Allied campaign along the way. You’ll visit the Utah Beach Museum, which is housed in one of the main Nazi bunkers, learn how US Rangers captured Pointe de Hoc, and doff your cap to the fallen at the Colleville-sur-Mer cemetery. There is also time for a cider tasting on the way (except on Sundays). Please note that this tour runs on a reduced schedule of three or four days a week during the autumn and winter months. From €169 per person.
D-Day Beaches Day-trip from Paris
This full-day tour from Paris to the D-Day landing beaches of Normandy starts by offering context at the Caen Memorial Museum, which depicts the events of the Battle of Normandy as they played out. After lunch (not included in the price) the tour moves on to Pointe du Hoc, the cliffs from which Omaha and Utah beaches can be seen, with some free time allowed at the former. There’s a stop at the Juno Beach Memorial, which marks the resting place of primarily Canadian troops, and a handful of other stops. Tours run on Mon, Thu and Sat. From €185 per person.
Normandy D-Day Landing Beaches Full-day Tour
No tour manages to balance the various WWII landmarks around the Normandy Beaches with some of the natural gifts of the Normandy region quite as well as this 12-hour tour. You’ll see the rusting guns of the Longues-sur-Mer Battery, the graves of fallen soldiers at the Normandy American Cemetery, see one of the key landing sites at Omaha Beach and even fit in a brief wine tasting. Look out upon the beautiful Normandy countryside during the journey. From €210 per person.
All Day Normandy D-Day Tour by Minibus from Paris
This tour is ideal if you’re travelling with a smaller group and would prefer to take a private tour. Key sites visited along the way include Pointe du Hoc; a German fortification and the American Cemetery at Colleville-sur-Mer. See the only remaining intact German artillery battery at Longues-sur-Mer, which gives an idea of what invading forces would have faced on that day. Or even add your own stops to the itinerary, given that it’s your private tour to command. The larger your group the better the savings. Travelling with the maximum of seven people allowed would cost €1,533. From €1,416 per group.