Best D Day Tour Normandy 2024 1
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Best D Day Tour Normandy 2024

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Greetings, Internet Stranger! I’m Stella Jane, author of the travel guide Get Lost, and welcome to a perfect D Day tour Normandy. D Day, as anyone who has seen Saving Private Ryan knows, was June 6, 1944. On this day, Allied troops landed on several different beaches in Normandy to attack the Nazi army that had set up bunkers all along the Atlantic Coast.

This landing was extremely dangerous, but ultimately successful. (I hope I don’t have to tell you that the Allies won World War II.) Nowadays, people come from all over the world to take a D Day tour Normandy and learn about the brave soldiers who risked, and in some cases lost, their lives in order to save the world.

If you’re looking to take a D Day tour Normandy, I strongly recommend staying in Bayeux because it’s the closest city to the beach and most tours leave from there. I took this exact tour, and I suggest that you take it too because it was full of fascinating historical information. Because the tour only takes a small group per day, the guide was able to tailor the tour to our interests.

Check rates and availability by clicking here.

Then get ready to learn more about this tragic and fascinating part of history.

Stella’s Top 3 Picks: Best D Day Tour Normandy

#1 TOP PICK

Best D Day Tour Normandy 2024 2

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
D Day Beaches Tour
✔️ Made for history buffs
✔️ Personalized experience

#2 PICK

Best D Day Tour Normandy 2024 3

BAYEUX WALKING TOUR
✔️ Expert local guide
✔️ Tons of fun facts

#3 PICK

Best D Day Tour Normandy 2024 4

ALL OTHER BAYEUX TOURS
✔️ Find your favorite!
✔️ Get the best deals

normandy d day tour

D Day tour Normandy

Morning: Omaha Beach

The Allies used several Norman beaches for the D Day landing. The British troops landed on two of them, Gold and Sword, and the Canadians landed on Juno. (Never forget the Canadian contribution to WWII!) However, for the purposes of this tour, we’re going to concentrate on the two beaches where the Americans landed, which were Omaha Beach and Utah Beach.

Nowadays, the memorials on Omaha Beach are much more interesting than those on Utah Beach, which we will see later in the day. It’s a very powerful experience to be able to walk along Omaha Beach, where so many people gave up their lives, and think about the sacrifice it took.

Both of my grandfathers were medics who served in France during World War II for the United States, though neither participated in the D Day invasion, so I was especially moved.

Our guide, whom I shall call Jacques, gave us a ton of information on our D Day tour. For now, I will just share with you…

Three Fascinating Facts: D Day tour Normandy

normandy d day tour
1) Where were the Germans during the invasion?

Right in these bunkers you can see in my photo above. Jacques told us that Hitler had his army build these bunkers all along the Atlantic Coast of France. The German fortifications here were called the Atlantic Wall, and they were considered to be unbeatable…until they were beaten.

normandy d day tour

You can actually go inside the bunkers, which is a completely wild experience. I wonder what my grandfathers would say if they knew I had done such a thing?

During the D Day invasion, the Allied forced fired repeatedly on these bunkers, killing as many Germans as possible. Jacques says that the Allies still argue about which country should get credit for killing each bunker. This seems like a silly thing to fight about to me. Let’s just be happy that we won and let the Canadians take all the credit, eh?

normandy d day tour
2) Why were the Allies successful?

There were several reasons, but one of them was that Hitler thought the invasion would land at Calais in the north of France. This was because of a campaign of Allied disinformation, but also because Calais was closer to England than Normandy was. It was a bigger risk for the Allies landing at Normandy, but it was a risk that paid off.

Another reason the Allies were successful is that Erwin Rommel, the great German general, was away from Normandy and back home in Germany. June 6 happened to be his wife’s birthday, and she wanted him to be back in Germany celebrating with her.

So we could perhaps say that June 6th was the luckiest birthday of all time because if Rommel had been in Normandy, the Allies might have lost. Jacques joked that they should build a statue to Rommel’s wife in Normandy, but who knows if that would go over well.

d day normandy tour
3) Was the Omaha Beach landing successful?

Of course, it was ultimately successful because the Allies won, but in many ways it was a disaster. Mostly, this was because of the bad weather. The bad weather had already delayed the invasion once, but General Eisenhower decided that they couldn’t postpone it any longer, which is why D Day took place on June 6th.

Because of the chaos and not being able to arrive at the desired landing spot, the medics weren’t set up properly on the beach. The Allies thought they would be able to set up medics to take care of the injured men, but it wasn’t possible.

Jacques also told us about two brothers who participated in the D Day landing. The men who survived but were injured were lined up in alphabetical order by last name, which is how the brothers found out they had both lived. However, not all the families were so lucky.

d day normandy tour

D Day tour Normandy

Afternoon: Explore the Other D Day Sights

Omaha Beach is obviously the most powerful sight that we’re going to see on this D Day tour Normandy, but it certainly isn’t the only sight you should see. We’re going to explore some of the other most famous and most historically important places involved in the D Day landing, and we’re going to learn some bits of history that they don’t teach you in school.

I’m not going to show you every place we visited on thia D Day tour Normandy because I want to leave some surprises for when you visit Normandy for yourself. However, I’ll be happy to share with you…

Approximately Top 5: D Day tour Normandy

normandy d day tour
1) Normandy American Cemetery

The Normandy American Cemetery is one of the most powerful spots that we visited on the tour. Jacques told us that he thought it was worth spending more time here than at Utah Beach, and he turned out to be very correct. So if your guide gives you the same choice, I suggest making the same request.

This cemetery is an extremely important place for any patriotic American, and it gets about one million visitors per year. Jacques said that every American president since Jimmy Carter has visited here, with the exception of George H.W. Bush. (Bush served in the Pacific Theater during World War II and prefers to visit that cemetery.)

Jacques also showed us the wall where the names of the honored dead are written. He told us the story of one family from a small town in Virginia who lost all their sons on D Day. They thought one had survived, but it turned out he was missing in battle and presumed dead. (They never found him.) This story makes Saving Private Ryan seem almost cheerful.

normandy d day tour
2) Lunch

At this point on the tour, you’ll be hungry for lunch, and fortunately we are heading to Sainte Mere Eglise, which is where some of the American paratroopers landed during Operation Overlord. (Operation Overload was the Allied code name for the entire invasion of Normandy, not just D Day itself.)

We’ve got a lot to see in this town, but let’s eat first. You can get lunch on your own, but Jacques said that Kiki’s Factory, formerly called Big Marcel, was the best lunch spot in town, so we stopped here.

The burgers were fresh and made to order, and I thought they were tasty, though a little more well done than I choose my burgers. I recommend the Poivre burger, which came with cheese and pepper sauce.

normandy d day tour
3) The Airborne Museum

Basically everyone who comes to Sainte Mere Eglise is looking for the Airborne Museum. But we are the luckiest because we get a special guided tour of Jacques, so we will learn what all these objects mean.

First, Jacques showed us a real World War II plane that you can get close enough to so that you can touch the wings. (We all touched it because Jacques said that it was allowed, and how often do you get to touch a plane from World War II? But if Jacques was lying and it’s not allowed, I’m very sorry. Please don’t throw me in French prison.)

We also got to see the special camouflage parachutes that the paratroopers had to use when they were landing in Normandy at night. As you can imagine, landing with a bright white parachute would make you an amazing moving target for Nazi snipers.

normandy d day tour

Jacques also showed us this flotation device that the paratroopers had to wear in case they landed in water. It was called the Mae West, but Jacques didn’t explain the joke to us. (Mae West was an extremely buxom actress, so she was never in any danger of sinking in the water.)

normandy d day tour

There are also so many replicas of paratroopers around the museum and the town itself. One of them is even hanging off a church!

normandy d day tour

I hope they never become sentient and decide to invade Normandy again.

normandy d day tour
4) Utah Beach

The first thing you need to know about Utah Beach is that it’s extremely flat. Jacques said that was the most important thing to remember, so I promised to pass the information along.

Jacques complained a lot about the museum at Utah Beach because he said that there were a lot of historically inaccurate recreations. (We didn’t have time to go in the museum. There’s a museum at Omaha Beach, but we didn’t go there either. However, I think one museum, the Airborne Museum, is definitely enough for an all-day guided tour.)

Compared to Omaha Beach, the landing at Utah Beach was much less deadly for the Allies. That’s because it’s…flat. A flat beach is easier to land on in bad weather. That’s just science.

normandy d day tour
5) Medic’s Church

At first glance, this might look like an ordinary French countryside church, but it was actually my favorite stop on the tour. This church is called the Medic’s Church because two American medics took it over after Operation Overlord started, and they insisted on treating anyone in need, no matter what country they came from. Yes, that included Germans.

However, they did have the rule that no one was allowed to bring weapons into the church. They actually stood up to Nazi commanders who wanted to bring their guns into the church and refused to let them do it.

normandy d day tour

These medics were unarmed, and the Nazis had certainly shown themselves unafraid to commit war crimes, yet it was the Nazis who backed down. (I don’t think they did it out of kindness, but they did appreciate that their soldiers needed medical attention, and the Medic’s church was providing the only care in the area.)

Being able to see this church was a special experience I will never forget. It reminded me of my two medic grandfathers, and though the work they did might not be the most glamorous or exciting, it was arguably the most important.

24 Hour Tip

Those are all the secrets of the tour that I can share with you for now. You’ll have to take the tour for yourself if you want to find out the rest.

Check rates and availability right here!

normandy d day tour

D Day tour Normandy

Evening: Dinner at Le Pommier

After that long day of seeing the D Day sights, you’re going to want some dinner. So I suggest making a reservation at Le Pommier, which is one of the most popular restaurants in Bayeux. I have actually been to this restaurant twice because Bayeux is one of my favorite places to visit in France.

normandy d day tour

Like many restaurants in France, Le Pommier offers a set menu including an appetizer, a main course, and a dessert.

For my appetizer, I selected the foie gras because it was the house specialty. I know liver isn’t for everyone, but I just have to eat as much foie gras as I can when I’m in France. It’s so decadent.

normandy d day tour

For my main course, I ordered the lamb, which was nice and lean and not too gamey. You can choose whichever side you want, and I selected the potatoes au gratin because melted cheese makes everything better.

normandy d day tour

Finally, for dessert I had the apple croustillant. We’re in Normandy, so it’s always apple o’clock here, and nothing goes with apples as well as vanilla ice cream and lashings of caramel. It was the perfect end to a perfectly fascinating day.

 D Day tour Normandy

D Day tour Normandy

Where to Stay?

By far the best place to stay as a home base for your D Day tour Normandy is Bayeux. Bayeux is a little bit spread out, but you’re going to want to stay in a hotel that’s as close to the historic part of town as possible. That’s why I recommend Le Castel Guesthouse. It had a great location, just a short walk away from all the attractions on this itinerary.

On top of that, I loved my cozy room which was away from any noise, as well as the tasty breakfast served in the breakfast room every morning. This was the perfect place to stay in Bayeux.

If you want a great deal on this hotel, click here.

And if you want to explore great deals on other hotels in Bayeux, just click here. This search engine will help you find the perfect place to stay during your D Day tour Normandy. With plenty of options to choose from, I’m sure you’ll find something for your schedule and budget.

normandy d day tour

That’s a Perfect D Day tour Normandy

What would you do on a D Day tour Normandy? Are you ready to start booking your hotel in Bayeux right now? And why were those chairs at the museum floating? Email me at stellajane@aroundtheworldin24hours.com and let me know!

Stella’s Top 3 Picks: Best D Day Tour Normandy

#1 TOP PICK

Best D Day Tour Normandy 2024 2

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
D Day Beaches Tour
✔️ Made for history buffs
✔️ Personalized experience

#2 PICK

Best D Day Tour Normandy 2024 3

BAYEUX WALKING TOUR
✔️ Expert local guide
✔️ Tons of fun facts

#3 PICK

Best D Day Tour Normandy 2024 4

ALL OTHER BAYEUX TOURS
✔️ Find your favorite!
✔️ Get the best deals

Note: If you want to know how I put my travel itineraries together, just click here. Keep in mind that while each article is about how to spend 24 hours in a place, that doesn’t mean you should ONLY spend one day on a D Day tour Normandy.

Add a one day in Rouen itinerary. You can also experience a day of what to see in Bayeux France. Or why not experience a day of what to do at Mont Saint Michel?

Best D Day Tour Normandy 2024 8

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