Welcome back to my blog.
I have decided to write this blog, because recently I went on an amazing trip to Normandy, in France. I wanted to share some information about Normandy, as it was a very historical place and I would really recommend going. My trip was quite intense as we would cover about three different places on each of the three days we spent there. I am going to highlight each place we went to and what we did there.
THE FIRST DAY:
1) On the first day, we drove to the Merville Gun Battery which has been restored after it was stormed by British paratroopers in the early hours of D-Day. This Gun Battery was a coastal fortification in Normandy and it was part of the German’s Atlantic Wall which was built to defend Europe from an allied invasion. It was one of the first places to be attacked by the allies on the Normandy landings and it was very successful, despite the lack of soldiers that took part. It was under the command of Terence Otway. Today, you can see the very interesting layout of the site. There are so many bunkers, a statue of Terence Otway and even a model glider which would have been similar to the ones that landed to invade the battery. It was one of my favourite places to visit, as it was super interesting!
2) We then drove to Pegasus Bridge Museum, where the invasion of the British light infantry in landing the gliders happened. This Bridge is really important, as it was a big victory for the allies. If they had not succeeded in winning the bridge, then the German’s would have been able to use it for bringing over tanks and other resources. I took plenty of pictures of the bridge and all the other incredible artefacts’ in the museum!
3) We then visited the town called ‘Bayeux’ where we got a long time to get food and souvenirs. Finally, to end our first day, we went to the British Military Cemetery. It was truly incredible and breath-taking to walk around the graves of so many lost lives. I couldn’t believe that all these men had died in Normandy, and some of them were only 18. The cemetery included a section on German and then British soldiers, It had a huge cross in the centre. It was such a peaceful place and it was a chance to reflect on how these men should never be forgotten.
THE SECOND DAY:
1) We started the day at Pointe de Hoc, this is an area on the coast of Normandy where the American Rangers tried to capture this vital defensive position on the cliff. I have so many pictures of this place as it was so interesting and so many different points where you can learn about the history there.
2) We then went to Utah beach where we looked around where the Americans landed and tried to attack the German defences. After lunch, we then went to St. Mere Eglise which was a landing site of American Paratroopers. Here we had some free time as there were so many cafes and ice cream places!
3) After our short stop to buy food, we went to Omaha Beach where the American attacks went badly as over 2000 men lost their lives there. Today, the beach is beautiful and families are there sunbathing, or swimming in the sea. It is almost unimaginable to think that so many people died there, under 100 years ago.
4) To end day two, we went to the American Military Cemetery which was huge and set in beautiful grounds. Everything has been set out perfectly, which made it a special place to visit. There are almost 10,000 graves in this cemetery, which I could hardly believe. It is such a breathless place because it just mind-blowing to think that every cross in the ground belongs to a soldier.
THE FINAL DAY:
1) On the final day, we visited the D-Day Memorial Museum at Caen. This was an incredibly interesting and informative museum which is huge. I would really recommend going as it really put D-Day into context and helped me understand a lot more about the significance of D-Day.
2) We then travelled to Cambes-en-Plaine Cemetery which is small and therefore, often forgotten. It was incredible to spend some time laying down wreaths for some of the soldiers buried there.
Finally, our trip was over. It was a short visit, but in that period of time I had learned so much about D-Day and all the invasions. It was incredible and I would really recommend visiting to anyone! Thank you so much for reading. I hope you liked this blog, if you did then please tap the heart at the bottom of the corner. Or share this blog on some of the social medias below, thank you.