A few kilometers from Bayeux for the first monuments, you will find a great number of things to do and discover.
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With different centers of interest and animations for adults and children.
Alone or guided, these castles and abbeys are witnesses of a rich past in Normandy.
Built in 1631 by the architect François Mansart, the imposing castle of Balleroy, entirely restored and furnished, can be visited as well as its French gardens and English park. In one of the outbuildings, take a free tour of the balloon museum, created by Malcolm Forbes, former owner and avid montgolﬁère enthusiast. For those who wish to spend a gourmet moment, the tea room welcomes you with coffee, teas, chocolate, cold drinks and delicious cake.
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A Renaissance residence that has always been handed down by heritage. The first floor salons house a collection of antique furniture and paintings. Chapel of the XIIIth and XVIth centuries. One of the particularities of this castle are its very high roofs and its richly sculpted façade.
About thirty old games and a human-sized labyrinth are available to the public in the park.
Saint-Martin de Mondaye is an abbey of thePremonstratensian order, located in France at Juaye-Mondaye, in Calvados(Normandy), built in the Bessin countryside, nine kilometers south of Bayeux. Founded in 1200, it is the only canonical abbey of the Premonstratensian order still in activity in Normandy, and includes more than forty brothers, of all generations, divided between Mondaye and its two priories, in Conques and Tarbes.
A historical experience to live in Falaise.
The castle of Falaise is a medieval treasure not to be missed. Built for the Dukes of Normandy, the Kings of England and the Kings of France, it has a unique architecture marked by dungeons that dominate the fortified city. Between dungeons-palaces inspired by Anglo-Norman architecture and massive defense towers, centuries of history pass by and tell you the epic of William the Conqueror and his descendants. An immersive scenography composed of computer-generated images and films, immerse you in the daily reality of the dukes and kings of the Middle Ages by recreating the richly decorated atmosphere of the princely splendor or the soberly military garrison.
Overlooking the city of Caen, the Romanesque abbey church of the Abbaye aux Dames still houses in its choir the tomb of its famous founder, Mathilde of Flanders, Duchess of Normandy, Queen of England and wife of William the Conqueror. From the 11th century crypt to the 18th century convent, the Abbaye aux Dames is one of the jewels of Norman heritage. Through the guided tour, you will discover the 950 years of history of this abbey and its illustrious ladies!
William entrusted the construction of the two abbeys to Lanfranc, a Benedictine monk and builder of Le Bec. The abbey church of Saint-Etienne, although reworked in the Gothic period, is a remarkable example of Norman Romanesque architecture.
It inspired many English churches built after the Conquest of England in 1066. William is buried here.
After many disasters, the monks of Saint-Maur took over the Abbey at the end of the 17th century, and decided to rebuild the whole abbey buildings.
Preserved from the bombings in 1944 because it served as a sanitary shelter for the population of Caen, the Abbaye-aux-Hommes became the Town Hall in 1963.
The architecture and interior decorations of the 18th century buildings are a visit not to be missed.
To find out more about the Abbaye-aux-Hommes