Art, History & Archaeology Sites & Museums

This northwestern region of France attracts many visitors to see the memorials and monuments of the D-Day Beaches of World War 2, not far from the city of Caen. Further back in time, Rouen was one of the largest and richest cities of Medieval Europe. Also a city where Joan of Arc is thought to have been burned at the stake. Where Monet painted his famous cathedral series. The Seine River Valley is know too for the many beautiful abbeys and monasteries. Normandy was heavily attacked by the Vikings from the 9th century onwards. Normandy has been the site of many conflicts, including the Normandy Campaigns in the early years of the 1200s, the Hundred Years War from 1337, and the 16th century Wars of Religion. Each of these has had a visible impact on the built environment, and what it is that tourists come to see.

Reasons to Visit Normandy


Castles, Forts & Abbeys,

D-Day Beaches,
… and Cheese, Cider & Calvados.

Interesting Things to Know About Normandy

Austria was ruled by the Hapsburg Dynasty from 1273 to 1918. Following the Treaty of Versailles in 1919 the Republic of Austria was formed. This ended in 1933, with the rise of a fascist dictatorship. In 1938 Austria was annexed by Hitler, and it was not until 1955 did the country regain its independence as the Second Austrian Republic.
One of the most impressive Baroque palaces built by the Hapsburgs, the Hofburg, is home to the Austrian National Library. Formerly the Imperial Court Library, which was established in 1368. There are over 12 million items in the libraries collections, including a vast collections of items from the middles ages. Making this one of the most important libraries in the world. Collections are organised into five museums, each of which has permanent and temporary exhibitions.
Humans have been living in what is now Austria since the Palaeolithic. One of the most remarkable artefacts from this period is the so-called Venus of Willendorf, an 11 cm high statuette dated to around 25,000 years ago. Carved from limestone, the female figurine was recovered during archaeological excavations near the village of Willendorf and is now on display in the Natural History Museum in Vienna.
In 1683 for a second time the Ottomans failed to take Vienna. By this time, however, much of eastern and southern Austria was devastated as a result of conflict between the Hapsburgs and the Turks. To re-establish their power and authority, the Hapsburgs set about rebuilding the destroyed churches, monasteries and palaces. And they did so in a most opulent way, giving rise to an extraordinary Baroque heritage in Austria. Popular examples of this Baroque opulence include Schloss Schönbrunn, Schloss Belvedere and Melk Abbey.
An interesting historical fact abut Austria, particularly appealing to travellers and tourists, it was in Austria-Hungary that postcards were first used, in 1869. They were immediately popular and by 1870 postcards were being used as a form of quick communication in England.

Find Places to Visit in Normandy

Five Popular Attractions in Normandy

Bayeaux Tapestry

Bayeux Tapestry

City and castle Hohensalzburg at sunset - Salzburg Austria

D-Day Beaches

Mont Saint Michele at dusk France

Mont Saint Michel

Monets House Summer

Monet’s House & Garden

Rouen Cathedral Front Portal Detail

Rouen Cathedral

Explore Normandy more deeply

Historic Cities in Normandy




Le Havre


What to See in Normandy

Castles & Fortresses

Normandy has a number of great fortresses and castles to visit. From the fortified town and abbey on Mont Saint Michel to the castle forts associated with such important historical figures as Richard the Lionheart and William the Conqueror. At the northern end of Normandy is Château d’Eu, a royal residence from the 16th century and later King Louis-Philippe’s summer residence. As English and French rulers fought over Normandy for centuries, so the fortresses and castles developed, in appearance and function.

Monasteries & Abbeys

Normandy is where you will find the world’s most well known and frequently visited medieval abbey, namely Mont Saint Michel. Scattered around this vast northern region of France, however, are many other equally spectacular monasteries and abbeys. Given the age of some of these religious sites it is perhaps not surprising that some, like those at Savigny and Saint-Evroult, are now in ruins. So evocative is the ruined Benedictine Jumiéges Abbey that it has frequently been described as France’s most beautiful ruins.

World War II Sites & Memorials

Museums & Art Galleries