I write so much about the beauties of Scotland, you’d think their tourist organization was blackmailing me with something. I think Scotland is stunning, but I am not blind to other great places around the world. And the region that impressed me as much as the Highlands did, was Normandy. Too bad they speak French – the language I suck in. Though these breathtaking views of Normandy make me forget all that.
Breathtaking views of Normandy
Mont Saint Michel
We can’t start with any other place but the picture perfect Le Mont Saint Michel.
When I first saw this place on TV, my stomach twisted with the burning desire to one day visit it. It looks straight out of a fairytale.
Too bad that in reality it gets so crowded, you don’t actually feel wonderful exploring it.
Walking the streets is like pushing yourself through a crowd on a concert, trying to get closer to the stage. Giving up half way through.
But I would never say, don’t visit. I’d just advise you to stay at a distance and take this amazing view in.
We did a lot of driving to get to Normandy. I am not complaining, because every once and awhile, we’d grow bored of the highway and we’d take the road less traveled. We explored the French countryside that was basking in the glow of the late Summer sun.
I daydreamed of wearing a baret hat, cycling to my country side manor with a loaf of still steaming baguette…. One I would eat ever so slowly with lots of butter, blue cheese and a glass of red wine. Not caring about the calorie intake. There were also no kids in the back of the car in this dream, only hubby, whispering sexy sounding French words… oh la la…
Nope, no thoughts of an affair….
Claude Monet’s House and Gardens in Giverny
I have been a fan of the French Impressionists since I was in high school – yeah, I was a nerd. Anyway, my must see in Normandy were the house and gardens of Claude Monet in Giverny.
Even if you don’t know who he is – the greatest painter ever (not just in my opinion) and you don’t care particularly about art, this place will leave you breathless. And depressed at the same time. I wished I could live here too. All our houses pale in comparison.
I am convinced I’d be able to produce a painting, though you should see how I suck at pictionary, if I had the chance to paint here.
This place is like a paradise come to life.
Omaha Beach will leave you breathless for an entirely different reason. D-day beaches are beautiful as they are, but if you add that deeper meaning they hold, then they impress you on a whole other level as well.
I’ve seen Saving Private Ryan, I sat through the History class where we were taught about D-Day, I read books about it. Yet, I wasn’t prepared for the range of emotions that engulfed me as I stepped on the yellow sand and took in the fortified hills in the distance. There was deep sadness mixed with gratitude and joy. I felt like the weather, gray clouds with sun rays cutting through.
I was happy to have brought my kids to this beach and let them run around. Because they can. We can. Because it’s the best way to celebrate life and the sacrifice it took to have it.
I don’t know how to explain it, but I am a sucker for moody weather mixed with rugged shores. The calm blue seas are great, but they don’t inspire me as much as the raw wildness of the North.
It’s as if the sheer force of Nature unleashes something wild in me too.
This photo perfectly describes a view that takes my breath away and makes me feel: sky laden with dark clouds, threating to spill its burden, drizzle as a forewarning, angry sea crashing into the wild cliffs covered with green grass… and people – so insignificant and small in this grand scene.
Fishing Villages like Port-en-Bessin
A scene like this reminds me of a beginning of some movie, a love story.
A boy coming back home from the big city, hungry for some piece and quiet, tired from working 14 hours for days, days that turn into months and years, climbing the corporate ladder, that never fulfills him.
A girl he left behind, who runs the local bakery, the center of the village’s gossip. Will she tempt him again and will they this time around find their happy ending?
C’est la vie!
There you have it the breathtaking views of Normandy. In comments let me know your favorite.