Normandy Travel Guide

History, adventure, gastronomy...just a few of the subjects to explore on a trip to Normandy.

Normanday school trip travel guide

An introduction to Normandy

In terms of destinations close to the UK that offer a distinct new cultural experience and huge volumes of educational content, you’ll have to work hard to find a place more fitting than Normandy.


From the colonisation of the peninsula by the Vikings in the 9th century, The Norman Conquest, through to the D-Day landings and the 21st century cosmopolitan territory of today, Normandy has a rich history and retains some stunning architectural treasures, as a trip to Mont St Michel or a walk around Rouen, will reveal.

If the conflicts of the 20th century are the focus of your school tour, the museums, memorials and cemeteries are superb. The stories of D-Day, Arromanches and Caen are made all the more vivid by the excellent curation of various War Graves Commissions.

All visits are covered by our externally verified Safety Management System and are pre-paid when applicable. Prices and opening times are accurate as of May 2018 and are subject to change and availability. Booking fees may apply to services provided by Voyager School Travel when paid on site.

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History

Arromanches Circular Cinema

A brilliant introduction to the story of the Battle of Normandy and the D-Day Landings. Documentary footage from 1944 is projected in high definition on nine screens on the walls of the circular cinema. Many visitors say the film helps to bring history alive for them.
arromanches360.com

Price £2 primary groups
£3.50 secondary groups
Opening times 10:10 to 17:40 daily
Closed Jan 1st - 23rd
Closed Mondays from Nov 5th - 31st Dec

Le Musée du Débarquement

Permanent exhibition of the Battle of Normandy and the D-Day Landings. A historic site, just a few metres away from the beach and the remains of one the Mulberry Harbours constructed in the war.
musee-arromanches.fr

Price £4 student
£6.50 adult
Opening times 09:00 - 12:30 & 13:30 - 18:00 daily

Caen Memorial

Museum and war memorial in Caen, commemorating the Second World War and the Battle for Caen town. It’s easy to spend four hours at the museum as it’s packed with exhibitions and film footage of events from the First World War, Second World War and the Cold War.

Some of the film footage can be upsetting but helps to give students a real understanding of events. There is a bookshop, cinema and café.
normandy.memorial-caen.com

Price £5 primary
£8 secondary
+ £3 guided tour
Opening times 09:00 - 18:00 & 13:30 - 18:00 daily
Closed January

Battle of Normandy Memorial Museum

The museum is located just a few kilometres away from the landing beaches. Ideally, you should plan a visit to the museum before actually going to the beaches themselves. A circular room is dedicated to the five landing zones at Utah, Omaha, Gold, Juno and Sword. Further exhibitions show the uniforms, equipment and weapons of each of the allied forces.
bayeuxmuseum.com

Price £4
Opening times Mar 1st - Oct 31st: 09:00 - 18:30
May - Aug: 09:00 - 19:00
Nov 1st - Feb 28th: 09:30 - 12:20 & 14:00 - 18:00
Closed selected dates in January

Pegasus Bridge

This museum is dedicated to the 6th Airborne Division, the first British soldiers to arrive in Normandy, who went on to capture the Pegasus Bridge from the Germans. The original bridge has been restored and is displayed outside.
memorial-pegasus.com

Price £4.50
Opening times Feb - Mar: 10:00 - 17:00
Apr - Sept: 09:30 - 18:30
Oct - Dec 15th: 10:00 - 17:00
Closed from Dec 15th throughout
January

Juno Beach Centre

This historic site charts the part taken by the Canadian forces in of the Battle of Normandy. As well as information panels, there are tours of tunnels and underground bunkers used in the war.
junobeach.org

Price £4.50 with quiz
£5.50 with activity
£5.50 with Juno Park
Opening times Feb: 10:00 - 17:00
Mar: 10:00 - 18:00
Apr - Sept: 09:30 - 19:00
Oct: 10:00 - 18:00
Nov - Dec: 10:00 - 17:00
Closed January

Omaha Beach

The museum is located on the actual beach and has an extensive collection of uniforms, vehicles, equipment and weapons, as well as archive photographs and a film featuring veterans’ real-life stories of the landings.
musee-memorial-omaha.com

 

 

 

 

 

Price £3 (15 and under)
£4
Opening times Feb - Nov: 09:30 - 18:30 daily
Closed Dec - Jan

Airborne Troops Museum

A museum dedicated to the memory of American paratroopers of 82nd Airborne and 101st Airborne Division who landed in Normandy. Visit the new building, the shape of an aircraft wing.

Climb aboard a Douglas C-47 plane Argonia, the aircraft used to transport many parachutists, to get an idea of what it was like at the time of the Landings.
airborne-museum.org

Price £4.50
Opening times May - Aug: 09:00 - 19:00
Apr & Sept: 09:30 - 18:30
Oct / Nov / Feb / Mar: 10:00 - 18:00
Openings vary Dec - Jan

Normandy American Cemetery

The cemetery, on a cliff overlooking Omaha beach, is resting place to 9,386 American soldiers. Row upon row of white marble graves honour the memory of the troops that died at Normandy in the Second World War.

There is also a memorial to the 1,557 American troops missing in action. The visitor centre has further useful information about the D-Day Landings and the Battle of Normandy.
abmc.gov

Price Free
Opening times 09.00 to 17.00 daily

The Bayeux Tapestry

The Bayeux Tapestry is a hand-crafted embroidery measuring 70 metres long, made in the 11th century and is listed by UNESCO as a “memory of the world”.

Celebrating the conquest of England by William, Duke of Normandy, it was made after the Battle of Hastings on October 14th, 1066, most likely by monks in England.
bayeuxmuseum.com

Price £4
Opening times Feb: 09:30 - 12:30 & 14:00 - 18:00
Mar - Apr: 09:00 - 18:30
May - Aug: 09:00 - 19:00
Sept - Oct: 09:00 - 18:30
Nov - Dec: 09:30 - 12:30 & 14:00 - 18:00
Closed Dec 24th - 26th
Closed Dec 31st - Jan 31st

Petit Train

Take this charming tourist train, one of the best ways to see Bayeux old town. The Petit Train takes around 35 minutes to complete a full circuit.

Price £2.50
Opening times Timetables vary:
14:00, 14:45, 15:30, 16:15, 17:00 & 17:30

Abbaye aux Hommes

The Abbey of Saint-Etienne, also known as Abbaye aux Hommes, is a former monastery in the French city of Caen, dedicated to Saint Stephen. It is considered, along with the neighbouring Abbaye aux Dames, to be one of the most notable Romanesque buildings in Normandy.

The two monasteries were finally donated by William the Conqueror and his wife, Matilda of Flanders, as a penalty for their marriage against the Pope's ruling. William was buried here; Matilda was buried in the Abbaye aux Dames.
caen.fr/adresse/abbaye-aux-hommes

Price

Free

Guided tours
- 1 October to 31 March: €4
- 1 April to 30 September: €5.50

Opening times Seasonal variations - see website

Le Mont St. Michel

On first sight, it doesn't take long to work out why this rock was chosen to build a monastery in the 8th century, and that subsequently it became one of the most important places of Christian pilgrimage for the next 1000 years.

Today, this UNESCO World Heritage Site receives over 3 million visitors a year and is truly spectacular, particularly if your approach is barefoot across the sand at low tide.
abbaye-mont-saint-michel.fr

Price £30 per group of up to 35 students and 2 adults
£9 additional adults
Opening times Jan - Apr: 09:30 - 18:00
May - Aug: 09:00 - 19:00
Sept - Dec: 09:30 - 18:00

 

 

Learn more about Normandy

Science

Cite de la Mer

Largest aquarium in Europe with 17 aquariums and fascinating exhibitions plotting the history of human adventures under the sea. Highlights include ‘Le Redoutable’, the largest submarine open to the public anywhere in the world and the Titanic exhibition.
citedelamer.com

Price £10
Opening times Feb - Jun: 10:00 - 18:00
Jul - Aug: 09:30 - 19:00
Sept - Dec: 10:00 - 18:00

Great Aquarium Saint-Malo

The Great Aquarium in Saint-Malo is one of the major aquariums in France with 11,000 marine animals of 600 different species presented in an aquarium spanning 4.000m² and with 2,500,000 litres of water!
aquarium-st-malo.com

Price £7
£8.50 incl. Nautilus
Opening times Every day
See website for varying hours

Bell Foundry

The first bell foundry workers came from Lorraine and settled here in the 16th century. The workshop continues to manufacture bells and visitors are shown around the kilns, the moulds and the pits by the people that work there.
cornille-havard.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

Price £7
20+ Group rate £6.50
Opening times Closed 20 Dec - 11 Jan
2 Feb - 10 Nov: 10:00 - 12:30/14:00 - 17:30
15 Jul - 27 Aug: 09:30 - 18:30

Copper Workshop

The Villedieu workshop was built in 1865 to coincide with the commissioning of the Paris-Granville railroad line.

Entirely designed by Adolphe Havard, the workshop has changed little since its original construction. The wooden tracks are still used today to move heavy pieces weighing several tons. The copper tools, characteristic of Villedieu, are still there and used by the workers today.
laboutiqueducuivre.fr

Price £6
Opening times Mon - Sat:
10:00/11:00/14:00/15:00/16:00

Zoo Champrepus

A beautiful zoo that combines lush gardens with animal life. The zoo aims to integrate its animals into a natural environment and there is a tropical area, special monkey sanctuary and Gibbon colony, a penguin pool and specialised continent areas dedicated to animals from Asia, Africa and Madagascar. There are many species of animal including lions and tigers! The staff are passionate about animals and during feeding time of the animals they talk about the importance of conservation and keeping the animals in captivity.
zoo-champrepus.com

Price £12 (12 +)
Opening times Apr - Sept: 10:00 - 19:00 daily
Closed Nov - 16 Feb

 

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Art

Eugene Boudin Museum

Impressionist art museum dedicated to the works of Eugene Boudin. The museum first opened in the town registry office 1924 and then moved to the eves of the town hall before being transferred again to the chapel in the Augustinian Convent where it remains today.
musees-honfleur.fr

 

 

 

Price Under 16's free
Over 16's 3€
Adults 4.50€
Opening times 10:00 - 12:00 / 14:00 - 18:30
Closed Tuesdays

 

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Recreation

Sand Yachting

Everyone can discover the joys of this activity, with wind in the sails and a magnificent view of Mont St Michel - weather permitting! Previous experience is not needed as the circuit put in place by the instructors allows all participants to acquire the necessary basic skills for sand yachting, in a safe and secure environment.

Price Students £20 - £27
Adults £30 - £37
Opening times Mon - Sat from Feb - Nov

Aqua Sud - Thury-Harcourt

Swimming pool complex with loads of aqua activities, including a 45-metre slide, waterfalls, rapids and counter-current swimming.
aqua-sud.com

Price 3€pp on site
Opening times See website for timetable

Ice Skating - Caen la Mer

Patinoire de Caen is an Olympic-sized skating rink.
caenlamer.fr

Price Students £3.30
Adults £4.30
Opening times Closed during competitions

Le Yéti

The Le Yéti complex houses bowling alleys and skating rink and billiards tables for your entertainment. 
leyeti.net

Price Bowling: £5- £6.50 + £1.70 shoe hire
Ice Skating: Students £6.50 Adults £8 Spectators £3.50
Opening times  See website for times and availability
Closed Mondays and Tuesdays

Bowling de Saint-Lô

The bowling alley at Saint-Lô.
bowlingdesaintlo.fr

Price £3 - £6.50
Opening times See website for times and availability

La Foret des Elfes

Various accrobranche treetop courses for all levels of ability.
laforetdeselfes.com

Price £15
Opening times Contact your Voyager salesperson

Parc Festyland

Parc Festyland is a theme park with plenty of rides to keep your students amused including rollercoasters and a flume ride. A smaller park where it feels safe to let your students roam.
festyland.com

Price £13
Opening times See website for times and availability

Les Chèvres de la Saffrie

Goats Cheese farm in Montchamp where you see the goats up close and learn how goats cheese is made.
chevres-saffrie.fr

Price £6.50
Opening times Contact your Voyager salesperson

Fromagerie du Val d’Ay

Cow’s milk farm in Lessay specialising in the production of Camembert. Visit the fromagerie for some excellent cheeses and see a short 15 minute film to learn the process of its creation.
reaux.fr

Price £2.50
Opening times Sept - Jun
Mon - Fri: 09:00/10:00/11:00

Caramels D'Isigny

Those with a sweet tooth will want to visit the traditional caramel and sweet shop in Isigny-sur-Mer, where you can see demonstrations of sweet making, with a delicious tasting session.
caramels-isigny.com

Price £2.50
Opening times Oct - Mar
Mon - Fri: 09:00 - 17:00
Apr - Sept
Mon - Fri: 09:00 - 18:00
Sat - Sun: 10:00 - 18:00

 

Les Huitres de Céline

Experience the freshest seafood at Les Huitres de Céline oyster farm, with a guided tour and tasting session.
leshuitresceline.com

Price £9
Opening times Mon - Fri: 09:00 - 16:00

La Boulangerie Les Copains

Tour of the bakery and hands-on breadmaking experience with each pupil taking home the bread they have made on the day.
boulangerielescopains.fr

Price £7pp
Group under 15 people - £100
Opening times Contact your Voyager salesperson

Chocolaterie du Drakkar

Quality chocolate museum in Bayeux.
chocolateriedrakkar.com

Price £4
Opening times Mon: 14:00 - 18:00
Tues - Sat: 09:30 - 11:30/
14:00 - 18:00

Père Magloire Distillery

Normandy is famous for its apple produce, and Calvados apple brandy is one of the reasons why. Visit this Calvados distillery and museum to learn about the distilling process and sample some of the apple brandy for yourself.
calvados-pere-magloire.com

Price Under 18s free
Adults 3.30€ on site
Opening times April: 11:00/14:30/15:30/16:30
May - Sept: 10:30/11:30/14:30/15:30
/16:30/17:30

Les Escargots de l’Odon

Tour of an authentic French snail farm with an opportunity to taste les escargots.
escargotsdelodon.fr

Price Long tour £6.50
Short tour £4
Opening times Apr - Oct

Les Sablés d’Asnelles Biscuit Factory

Visit this traditional biscuit factory in Asnelles, small groups of 15/20 people at a time. The biscuit factory is located in the lovely town of Asnelles, walking distance from the beach. Whilst in Asnelles you can also visit the morning market on Thursday mornings.
sables-asnelles.fr

Price 2€pp on site
Opening times See website
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