Cabourg is a seaside town located to the east of the 5 Normandy Landing Beaches. If you are looking to entwine a trip with history, beauty and the 5 Landing Beaches, Cabourg is a perfect home base. If you travel via D35 to N13, the trip from Cabourg to the farthest beach, Utah Beach, is about 75 miles one way. Renting a car gives you the ability to stop in the small fishing towns along the way and spend as much time as one would like at each of the 5 Landing Beaches. Trying to see all 5 beaches in one day is possible, but is much more enjoyable if you take your time and spend a few days touring the area.
WHERE TO START
The small town of Cabourg’s main street of Avenue de la Mer is lined with colorful local shops and eateries. The street is anchored at one end by the historical Le Grand Hotel Cabourg-MGallery. Start at either end of the main street and wander in and out of the pastry shops, gift stores, cafes, clothing stores and restaurants. You can easily spend the day meandering in and out of all the stores.
WHERE TO STAY
The Hotel Les bains de Cabourg is a 4-star, seaside resort located in Cabourg, Normandy. All rooms come with a terrace or balcony so make sure to request a room with a view of the sea. There is a buffet breakfast option every morning and the restaurant, Le Poisson d’argot, offers French cuisine prepared with seasonal products for lunch or dinner. For an added bonus, dine on the terrace and enjoy the panoramic views. There is a wood plank walkway that leads down to the beach and the promenade which offers an easy morning or afternoon stroll.
WHAT TO EAT
For a large, inviting bowl of fresh mussels, try L’Etoile de Mer (57 Avenue de la Mer) or try the local pizza at Restaurant L’Oryx (54 Avenue de la Mer), both located on the main street. If you are in the mood for pastries or dessert, try La Maison Florent (30 Avenue de la Mer) at the end of the same street near Le Grand Hotel.
WHAT TO DO
The 75 miles of coastline between Cabourg and Utah Beach is littered with small towns, historic sites and beautiful countryside. From the museums to the Military Cemeteries to the monuments, there is an abundance of places to visit and experience. Along the way, you can stop in the towns of Courseulles-sur-Mer, Arromanches-les-Bains or Port-en-Bessin and enjoy the local fare and hospitality.
If you travel in or out of Caen when you are visiting the Normandy Landing Beaches, you can tour the Chateau Ducal de Caen that was initially created by William the Conqueror in 1060, damaged in the bombardment of Caen in 1944 and then restored. The Caen Castle, as it is called, is only five minutes from the center of town or the train station.