We were staying in a holiday home on La Vallee campsite on the edge of town. Eurocamp are outdoor holiday specialists but I have to say everything indoors was fabulous too. The first evening we had a smashing meal at the restaurant on site and I had my first taste of Calvados.
Calvados is both a region of Normandy and a regional aperitif, an apple brandy, it certainly ensured a good night’s sleep! The other evenings I cooked, either in the mobile home or more often on the BBQ.
I made Normandy chicken one evening and it was delicious, perhaps next week I will feature it as a recipe as it is easy to prepare and delicious.
I found the part of Normandy we were staying in to be fabulous on many counts. It is a beautiful area, quite green and lush with rolling countryside and amazing half timbered houses.
We were a ten minute walk to the beach and what a beach it was, golden sand, blue sea and lots of space. The village was very pretty, and we visited on market day which is always a great buzz. Houlgate has a covered market too and I loved it there. I bought a string of garlic bulbs for 12 Euros, half a kilo of mushrooms and a slice of vanilla flan.
A drive up the coast very quickly brings you to Deauville and Trouville which are both quite elegant seaside resorts and a drive down the coast brings you to the landing beaches of Sword, Juno, Omaha and Gold. We visited the British cemetery at Ranville. Ranville was the first village to be liberated by the soldiers that landed on D Day and the following weeks. The cemetery is very tranquil and so beautifully kept by the war graves commission.
Finally, just a little further along the coast, we visited the British Normandy Memorial. Overlooking the sea, it records the names of the 22,442 servicemen and women who, under British command, fell on D Day and during the battle of Normandy in the summer of 1944.
Also on site is a French memorial dedicated to civilians who died during this time. A sobering visit but I really do recommend it. Back home now to the equally beautiful Sussex and onward to my next adventure!