When planning our trip to France, I was most excited about visiting Alsace. I added three days in Normandy to the itinerary since I thought it was important to visit the D-Day landing sites. Little did I know that Normandy has so much to offer that it would end up being my favorite part of our trip! Here’s the complete three day Normandy itinerary.
Day 1: Giverny, Rouen, and Etretat
When visiting Normandy, I highly recommend renting a car. After our four days in Paris, we picked up our rental car and headed north!
The first stop is Giverny, located about an hour and a half outside of Paris. In Giverny, visit the house of Claud Monet and the famous Japanese gardens that inspired his Water Lilies series.
You can read more about visiting Giverny here.
Next, drive to the city of Rouen for lunch.
While in Rouen, be sure to visit the Rouen Cathedral which dates back to the 12th century.
You can also visit the Church of Saint Joan of Arc and the place where Joan of Arc was burned at the stake.
You can read more about visiting Rouen here.
After Rouen, drive to Etretat, a town on the English Channel with stunning white cliffs. There are two cliffs to visit in Etretat: Falaise d’Amont and Falaise d’Aval. Spend a few hours exploring the beach and the cliffs.
You can read more about what to do while in Etretat here.
Dinner in Port-en-Bessin
After Etretat, it’s time to stop for the night. We booked a room at a rural bed and breakfast outside of Bayeux called Manoir de Cleronde. You may also choose to stay in Bayeux.
For dinner, drive to the seaside town of Port-en-Bessin and dine at one of the restaurants along the water.
Day 2: D-Day Tour and Bayeux
On Day 2, visit the D-Day landing sites on a tour departing from Bayeux.
We booked our small group tour through Ophorus. The tour focused on sites in Normandy pertaining to the United States’ involvement in D-Day. These stops included: Utah and Omaha Beaches, the US cemetery, Pointe du Hoc, and Sainte-Mère-Église.
You can read more details about each D-Day site here.
The tour returns you to Bayeux with just enough time to visit the Bayeux Tapestry and the Bayeux Cathedral. You also have the option of visiting the cathedral before the tour if you want more time visiting the tapestry.
Explore Bayeux on foot before stopping for dinner at one of the many restaurants in town.
Day 3: Mont Saint-Michel
On your final day in Normandy, you’ll drive an hour and a half south to visit the beautiful Mont Saint-Michel.
Mont Saint-Michel is an abbey located on the island of Mont Saint-Michel. When the tide is high enough, the causeway to the island becomes completely flooding, making it look like the abbey is floating in the water.
You can read more about visiting Mont Saint-Michel here.
From Mont Saint-Michel, it’s about a four hour drive back to Paris. We drove directly to the airport, making a pitstop in the town of Honfleur for lunch.
Stop at La Cidrerie for amazing crepes, galettes, and cider.
I hope this three day Normandy itinerary showed you that there’s a lot to see and do in Normandy. From Monet’s house in Giverny to the white cliffs of Etretat to the abbey of Mont Saint-Michel, there’s a little something for everyone in Normandy. Can you see why it was the highlight of our trip?