Normandy walking tour
Private Family & Friends Walking Experience.
Normandy D-Day Beaches, Rouen, Mont Saint Michel, Saint Malo

Normandy walking tour

Historical Walks to D-Day Beaches, Rouen, Mont-Saint-Michel and Saint Malo
– For Family & Friends

From Viking conquest to Roman towns, Normandy, situated in the northwest corner of France, has literally been at the heart of French and European history for centuries.

Our walking journey through Normandy and the Loire Valley combines guided cultural walks with moderate hikes to some of the most picturesque areas of France.
Sights include the famed monastery of Mont Saint-Michel, (UNESCO World Heritage Site), the majestic spires of Rouen’s cathedral, and the dramatic D-Day beaches where Allied troops fought so valiantly and incurred heavy losses. Travel to the Corsair city of Saint Malo and enjoy gourmet meals and guided visits of this historically important city. We will also visit Honfleur, made famous by Samuel de Champlain, who sailed from this port to found the city of Quebec.
Our meticulously chosen accommodation in both luxury chateaux to quaint sea-side inns bring home the meaning of Old World charm.
An extension to the Loire Valley and its castles is one of the many options to customize this trip.

LOCATION
france
LENGTH OF TRIP
4-14 DAYS
PRICE RANGE – This itinerary

USD $ 5,700
CAD $7,400
*Pricing based on three hikers

Day 1: ARRIVAL DAY
Rouen, the capital of Normandy is our meeting point. Famous for the spot where the French martyr, Joan of Arc was killed on the pyre in 1431, it is also an ancient city with cobblestone streets, amazing gothic architecture and a thriving university scene. Called the ‘city of a hundred spires’ by Victor Hugo, Rouen does not disappoint. Welcome dinner and evening on the town.

Hotel in Rouen
Dinner included

Day 2: ROUEN
Today is dedicated to visiting this medieval jewel of Rouen, its cathedral, the Norman market and various other points of interests including the astronomical clock, “Gros Horloge” and the massive churches of St Ouen and Saint Maclou. An afternoon hike is planned in the forest high above the city. Dinner in a typical Norman restaurant.

Hotel in Rouen
Breakfast / Dinner included
City-Walk 2-3km, 2 hours. Afternoon hike 7km ( 4.5m), 3 hours, up / down 50m (150ft)

Day 3: ETRETA
Étretat is a pretty fishing village on the English Channel made famous by the children’s book Arsène Lupin, the gentleman burglar and by its stunning white chalk cliffs. It still has a small fishing harbour where a few locals still ply their trade.  Our walk along the Côte d’Albâtre allows us to hike back to Étretat starting in Fécamp and stopping for lunch in the tiny summer resort of Yport. With its harbour, deep bay and many small shops, it has been a favourite of artists and tourists alike since the 19th century.  This easy coastal walk meanders along the white chalk cliffs, will give us ample opportunity to enjoy the lush Norman countryside, its small farms, numerous churches and little-know culinary gems. A visit of the Benedictine Distillery is also planned later in the afternoon.

Hotel in Étretat
Breakfast / Dinner included
Luggage delivered
  Distance 16km, 5 hours. Up 310m (1023ft)

Day 4: HONFLEUR
From Étretat, we leave the coast and head south to the town of Pont L’Évêque, renown for its cheese of the same name. Time-permitting, we will have a tour of one of several artisanal cheese-making facilities in the area. An afternoon hike is planned in the countryside taking in the rich Norman ‘Terroire” before heading back to the coast and the ancient harbour town of Honfleur, on the River Seine estuary. With its minuscule fortified port, small fleet of fishing boats and chic restaurants, Honfleur is one of the most-visited destinations in France. Our 16th century hotel combines modern amenities with charm only the French can offer.

Hotel in Honfleur
Breakfast / Dinner included
Luggage delivered
  Distance 10km (6.25m), 3 hours.

Day 5: ARROMANCHES-LES-BAINS
The day begins with a guided visit of Honfleur. We’ll make our way to Caen and the Peace Museum dedicated in part to the D-Day landings after a seafood meal along the harbour. A self-guided visit of the museum is planned before driving to the summer resort and fishing village of Arromanches-Les-Bains, the epicentre of the D-Day landings.

Hotel in Arromanches
Breakfast / Dinner included
Luggage delivered
Transfer to Caen 1 hour, in the afternoon transfer to Arromanches (40 minutes)

Day 6: SAINT MALO
Arromanches-Les-Bains will forever be linked to the liberation of western Europe by the Allied Forces and its massive Mulberry Harbour made of huge concrete blocks. We will also visit some of the most famous landing beaches, such as Utah, Sword and Juno in Courseulles-sur-Mer and the Juno Beach Centre entirely funded by Canadian and British veterans. Our morning will be taken up by a guided visit of Allied troop landings and German defensive positions with a planned visit to the very moving American War Cemetery at Colleville-sur-Mer. After lunch, a 3-hour drive will bring us to the fortified city of St Malo, and the nearby Mont Saint-Michel, a UNESCO site.  Lunch en route to St. Malo.

Hotel in Saint Malo
Breakfast / Dinner included
  D-Day Beaches, casual walking, 1-3 hours
Arromanches – Courseulles-sur-Mer, 20 minutes, transfer to Colleville-sur-Mer, 30 minutes. Afternoon Transfer to Saint Malo, 2hours 15 min

Day 7: MONT-SAINT-MICHEL
A guided visit of the Mont-Saint- Michel, a Benedictine abbey, originally built in the 11th century, will be followed by a guided hike across the glistening bay, taking in the spectacular natural beauty of this magical place joining the thousands of pilgrims who make this journey each year. Overnight in St. Malo

Hotel in Saint Malo
Breakfast / Dinner included
Distance: 3km (1.8m), 5 hours

Day 8: DEPARTURE DAY
Trip ends after breakfast, departure at your own leisure.

Breakfast included

ITINERARY – OPTIONS

Normandy is one of the most popular destinations in France and has so much to offer that it would be difficult to list everything. However, I spent most of my summers in Normandy with my family, studied in Rouen and taught English in a local high school. I am not an expert on the area but have a good deal of local knowledge and would love to share that with you. If you need suggestions for putting a private trip together or are looking for something different, let us know and we will do our best to assist you in planning your dream holiday.

Normandy is “foodie” country so basing a trip around its culinary delights is pretty easy to arrange. There are so many excellent restaurants in the region, cooking locally-produced ingredients  that a lifetime would be needed to discover what the region has on offer. We can also arrange cooking lessons in several of the restaurants in Rouen and Honfleur giving you and window into some of France’s most cherished recipes.

 

If history is your passion, Normandy is second to none in France. With an excellent network of trains and buses, Paris and the surrounding areas are within striking distance of many areas of Normandy. We do incorporate the D-Day beaches and Allied landings in our trips but we could focus entirely on this if you have the interest. As with all of our trips, we hire local tour/city guides who provide and in-depth knowledge of their areas of expertise, allowing your holiday to be both fun and educational.

 

OPTIONAL HIGHLIGHTS

Why not extend your journey and visit the Loire Valley and the amazing Chateaux Country? We can also assist you in extending your adventure to Brittany and surrounding islands.

 

ACCOMMODATION

Normandy, Brittany and Paris are home to an incredible variety of accommodation, some in the most unique buildings in Europe. We can certainly upgrade most accommodation throughout our Normandy itineraries.

 

WHAT IS ALWAYS INCLUDED

  • Hiking guide (we only hire certified International Mountain Leaders)
  • All accommodation
  • All breakfasts
  • Local transfers and lifts
  • Detailed information package including day-to-day itinerary with elevation gains/descents, and hiking maps of the Haute Route.
  • Some dinners and afternoon cakes

OPTIONAL SERVICES

  • Lunches, some dinners
  • Luggage transfer where possible

This trip rating depends on the group, and can be anything between easy/moderate and more difficult.
The trip includes a mix of city tours, D-Day Beaches historical walks, and some coastal walks that are 6-8 hours long.

HOW TO GET THERE:
Point of Entry: Paris, Rouen

Normandy can easily be done self-guided, however we would recommend to take a guide at the D-Day beaches, and if you are a history nerd, include some of the guided visits to towns such as Rouen or Mont St. Michel. The walking itself is fairly easy. Normandy is one of our favourite places in France, and not only because Louis’ family hails from the region.

We are here to make your dream holiday come true
About Alpine Interface
Alpine Interface is a small, family-run organization, specializing in guided hiking tours, in the Alps, Europe, and the Canadian Rockies.

The company is owned and operated by Karin Stubenvoll and Louis Marino.

Louis is the owner of the company and the lead guide. He is responsible for the smooth operation and high quality of all our guided hiking trips, new itineraries, and our special customer care, which is the main reason why we have so many returning clients. Karin is the Office Manager and does all the work!

In 2005, Karin and Louis moved from Chamonix in the French Alps to the Bow Valley in the Canadian Rockies in order to explore the wilderness of the Canadian west. It also provides better customer service, being in North America.

Imagine letting Alpine Interface tailor your private dream holidays for your family and friends. Celebrating our 20th anniversary in business this year has given us vast experience when it comes to the details of trip preparation. Let us take you to the majestic trails of the European Alps, to Provençal markets, the historic D-Day beaches of Normandy, and the jagged limestone spires of the Dolomites.

  • All guides are certified professionals with adequate work permits
  • Exceptional customer care and service
  • Fully customized itineraries catering to your group
  • Safe travelling with family & friends only

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