One of Britain’s best-loved French holiday destinations is
Normandy, often just a short flight or ferry ride away from the UK. Amongst the
many reasons we love to visit Normandy are its rich history, which in turn
influenced Britain’s history, the beautiful towns and beaches, and of course
the host of events taking place year-round. If you’re planning on staying in
our Normandy villas this year, here’s what you can expect to find going on.
Normandy Impressionist Festival
Now in its third edition, the Normandy Impressionist
Festival is now one of the main events in Normandy’s arts calendar. This year,
the event will take place between April 16 and September 26, with portraits being
the central theme. Cities all over Normandy including Rouen, Caen and Le Havre
will host a variety of cultural events from fine art exhibitions to concerts
and light shows.
Normandy Festival of AOC
The first week of May is a foodie’s delight, where Cambremer
celebrates the best of the region’s local produce, including cheeses, wines and
other goods. Spread over two days, the event is enjoyed by people of all ages,
and includes tastings, markets and games for all the family to get involved
Joan of Arc Festival
Also taking place in early May is a festival celebrating
folk heroine Joan of Arc. The woman born a peasant but ending up leading the
French army to victory is honoured throughout Rouen with a religious
procession, a parade and re-enactments of the Orleans siege.
Throughout the summer Normandy’s towns celebrate their
history with a series of medieval festivals, joyous celebrations where the
crowds are entertained by jesters, knights, jugglers and minstrels. The main
medieval festival takes place in July in Bayeux, where William the Conqueror
plotted his invasion of Great Britain.
Rouen sur mer
While eleven months of the year Rouen lacks a beach, between
July and August the banks of the Seine become just that, complete with the
finishing touches such as deckchairs and ice cream. By night, the ‘beach’ also
hosts evening concerts.
American Film Festival
Much more accessible to the public than Cannes Film
Festival, every September Deauville hosts a 10-day celebration of American films,
showcasing titles both old and new and attracting its fair share of big-name
Over 60 autumn festivals are held throughout the region
between mid-October and the end of November, meaning no matter where you’re staying,
there will be a festival near you. Cities such as Dieppe, Rouen and Le Havre
will be hosting a variety of circus events, music and dance performances.