Normandy D-Day Beaches



Our last day in Normandy
was spent hauling buns around the coast
trying to take in all of the WWII history.

Obviously, this is impossible to do in one day.

We had watched Saving Private Ryan ahead of time,
which turned out to be a good move.

Walking out to those beaches and having fresh visuals
of what happened on the ground below us
is a heavy feeling that is hard to explain.

You'll have to go someday and it experience it for yourself...
but it's an odd cocktail of pride & sadness that can only be drank slowly.

Regardless of being in the middle of the French countryside
I was left feeling as patriotic as if I was atop float in a Fourth of July Parade.

Our D-Day Itinerary through Normandy started with a visit to Utah Beach.



Walking out to Utah Beach,
it looked exactly like I had always pictured it.








From Utah Beach, we headed to the Paratroopers Museum in town
and had a quick break to have, in my opinion the best tailgate ever.



No, I don't really enjoying eating out of the trunk of a car before football games,
but somehow when it is out of a Peugeot in a small French village it seems much... classier :)

We cruised on up the road another hour or so till we arrived at Omaha Beach.




Then we found ourselves up the hill at the American Cemetery...
which is both hauntingly beautiful.

All those crosses representing people who had their lives cut short
so that others enjoy the promise of a full, free life.

It's humbling, no?




In retrospect, we could have skipped driving to Omaha Beach,
and just headed to the American Cemetery 
where there is a path to the beach from there. 
It overlooks the beach as you can see in the picture below. 

Oh well.


Normandy is an amazing trip. 
Honestly, one I hope to do over several times,
as I can tell this is a special place that only gets better as you uncover it.

{But I will probably always return to this private home rental near Mont St Michel where we stayed.
It was completely perfect- location, cute owners, fabulous four course meal for dinner!}


Have you visited Normandy?
Do you know someone who fought there?






*all images original to Aspiring Kennedy. 

Posted on April 13, 2012 and filed under "France", "French Day Trips", "Normandy", "travel".