Paris to Normandy

Aug 23rd, 2007, 09:35 AM
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Another reco for Le Petit Bistro in Bayeux.
grandmere is offline  
Aug 23rd, 2007, 09:47 AM
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Hello Greg

Sounds like you are getting alot of helpful responses to your inquiry. Another beautiful town (not bombarded by the war and within an hour to the landing beaches is Normandy. A beautiful b&b recently opened with terrific reviews on tripadvisor right in the center of town and walking distance to excellent (Michelin) restaurants Ru by an American owner and here French husbanc, here is their website in Honfleur
PennySF is offline  
Aug 23rd, 2007, 04:57 PM
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Certainly everyone has his/her own tolerance level for more travel, logistics included, after an overnight flight. Even so, in this case going right on to Bayeux makes sense to me. If Greg waits until the next morning to take the train to Bayeux, he won't be able to get there in time to take a full-day tour of the D-Day beaches. He may be groggy when he gets to Bayeux, but after a good night's sleep he'll be ready for a full day in Normandy.
TimS is offline  
Aug 23rd, 2007, 06:32 PM
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Continuing on to Normandy after an all-night flight is NOTHING compared to some of the treks I've made on the first day.

We loved the Chateau de la Bellefontaine in Bayeux, and another recommendation for Le Petit Bistro in Bayeux.
StCirq is offline  
Aug 23rd, 2007, 11:13 PM
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Worktowander is offline  
Aug 27th, 2007, 07:32 AM
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Thanks to all,

Our tenative plan is for 3 days at the Hotel Churchill. We looked at Hotel d'Argouges (**), but the price on the website was a bit more than the Hotel Churchill which was a 3*.

Thanks to all, and if we did not take your advice let me assure y'all it was considered.

VolGreg is offline  
Aug 27th, 2007, 10:58 AM
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TRSW is offline  
Aug 27th, 2007, 02:30 PM
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I spent some time in Normandy in late April of this year. I went straight to Normandy (Rouen) from CDG, taking the RER to Gare du Nord, then taxi to St. Lazare. My suggestion is to take a taxi from CDG to St. Lazare. Yes, the RER is cheaper, but the line was horrendous for the RER ticket, as was the taxi queue at Gard du Nord. Especially do this if you have a time limit to get the Bayeux train. Whether the RER or taxi, I definitely wouldn't spend the first night in Paris. I arrived in Rouen by around 1:30 P.M. and enjoyed having the afternoon there. I loved Normandy - I stayed 2 weeks!
Sue4 is offline  
Aug 27th, 2007, 05:06 PM
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Please let us know what you think of the Hotel Churchill. My husband and I are trying to plan a similar trip in the near future. Thanks!
Samsaf is offline  
Aug 27th, 2007, 05:49 PM
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If you have 8,20€ in your jeans, I think you can buy your RER ticket from a machine at CDG. Anybody done this lately?

The transfer to RER E at Gare du Nord is a lot easier than getting a taxi.
Robespierre is offline  
Aug 27th, 2007, 05:54 PM
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I will be traveling to Bayeux next month. Taking an afternoon, two-hour train from Paris. Booked rail tix here through (800-441-2387). Byron is very knowledgeable about trains in Europe - he can get advance booking fares for you. (learned about him on this site) Staying at Hotel Churchill. ( full-day tour of D-Day beaches with Alain Chesnel @ OverlordTour. I know several people who have taken this tour and they all found it "moving" and informative. Taking train back to Paris and connecting to RER to stay at hotel near CDG.
stricky is offline  
Aug 27th, 2007, 05:58 PM
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In case Hotel Churchill doesn't pan out, we were very pleased with Hotel Lion d'Or in Bayeux. Here's how we handled the Paris/Normandy part. Our plane from the US landed in the morning at CDG. We rented a car, drove to Bayeux, checked in, lazed away the afternoon, got a good night's sleep, woke well-rested the next day for touring the beaches/D-Day sights. As far as the weather goes, we were there in March. It was cold, drizzly, at times blowing rain. My husband went back at the end of April this year. While it was warm in Paris, it was cool and drizzly, again, in Normandy. Hope this helps...happy planning.
dorkforcemom is offline  
Aug 27th, 2007, 07:02 PM
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I have been following this thread in anticipation of my spring 2008 trip. I appreciate all the helpful replies and all the different points of view.

Robespierre, thank you for the detailed explanation about getting from CDG to Gare St. Lazare. It sounded like a great idea...and the details were especially helpful.... until I remembered I'll have luggage with me. It's only a 22-inch rollaboard....but I've decided to splurge and take a taxi from CDG to Gare St. Lazare.

And thanks to everyone about all the information on Bayeux, tours, history, hotels, bistros, trains, chicago tribune, etc.
suntravler is offline  
Sep 4th, 2007, 09:26 AM
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I looked up the website for La Petit Folie. Have any of our posters stayed here? I'm considering it as an alternative to L'Ecrin.
hopingtotravel is offline  
Sep 4th, 2007, 03:18 PM
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Caen is a great place to center your Normandy time. We also took the train from Paris, a pleasant ride with advance reservations. We arranged several months in advance for a Normandy guide, which in my opinion was well worth the price. We did some of it on our own with a rental car, but spent one long day with Nigel. His knowledge of the invasion and local countryside was fantastic. Other than the WWII sites, we went to Mont.St. Michele and San Melo, in Brittany. I will get my notes out and send you the contact information for Nigel. Not sure if you are flying from US, but if you are you'll be pretty tired if you go straight from the airport to the train station. Allow some rest time somewhere along the line or you'll be too tired to appreciate what you're seeing.
Challiman is offline  
Sep 4th, 2007, 03:32 PM
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As promised, the guide we hired was Nigel Stewart at [email protected]. Not sure if you are a big history buff, but if so he's excellent. Watch Band of Brothers before you go, if possible.
Challiman is offline  
Sep 5th, 2007, 08:17 AM
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Thanks, cant wait for your notes. Big history buff, espally WWII. Watched my copy of Band of Brothers about a million times so I should be well prepared.

VolGreg is offline  
Sep 6th, 2007, 01:21 PM
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Also be sure to watch "The Longest Day" and "Saving Private Ryan". I didn't see them until after my trip, and wished I'd done it before. Still haven't seen Band of Brothers, but am certainly going to get it.

I have heard many good things about the Hotel Churchill, and had planned to stay there on my trip. I ended up staying outside of Bayeux at Ferme de La Ranconniere, as I had a car and wanted to be in the countryside. That was a great place, (but only if you have a car). It was a terrific bargain, as dinner and breakfast were included.
Sue4 is offline  
Sep 8th, 2007, 05:45 AM
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Thanks for movie tips. Cornelius Ryan wrote the book "Longest Day" that was later turned into the movie of the same name. Saw the movie did not read the book. Read the S. Ambrose book on D-Day, it is very good. Ryan's book is recognized as a classic, written in the 50's from interviews of the participants only a few years removed from the battle.

"Saving Private Ryan" was loosely based on a true story as recounted in Ambrose's book “Band of Brothers". The real Private Ryan was a paratrooper in the 101st called Niland, but his rescue was not as dramatic as the movie. He was contacted after D-Day and told to go home – no search party, no Willie, no sticky bombs were needed. "Saving Private Ryan" may be instructive on what US solider went through on D-Day, but as history the movie is lacking. So I don't think it really should be recommended a reference for a D-Day tour.

On the other hand "The Longest Day" is very instructive and right on the details. For example, there is a scene in the movie Rommel is in Paris for his wife's birthday on June 6, 1944 - he thought the invasion would be put off by the rainy weather. This was one of the many things that tipped the battle in favor of the Allies in real life. This movie gives both the Allies & the German perspective.

VolGreg is offline  
Sep 9th, 2007, 02:09 PM
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Bookmarking this wonderful information.

Challiman: Can you tell me why you opted for a private tour guide of Normandy area over a tour bus? And what was the price difference?

Le Petit Bistro sounds like a must-try.


nbbrown is offline  

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