Places to Visit

L’ile Tatihou
Tel 02 33 23 19 92

Is a Unesco World Heritage Site. The island is clearly visible from Hibou Blanc. See Activites for Children for more details.

Barfleur

Picturesque Norman town built round a tidal port. Barfleur gains its wealth from the sea and mussel dragging. Fishing is a serious business here, as it is in St Vaast, both for the fishermen and the cafes and restaurants they supply. William the Conqueror’s boat The Mora, was built and launched here. (The Invasion of 1066 did not start here). Favourite place to eat Café de France.

See sections Restaurants & café bars & The history of our region for more details.

Lefebvre Potter, 56 Rue St Nicolas.
Tel: 02 33 -23-11-51

Hand thrown pottery with distinctive blue fish or birds (There are several pieces at Hibou Blanc and the owl tiles behind the cooker were specially made). Best time to visit – early on a Tuesday when the new pieces are put out for sale.

Gatteville Phare

Near Barfleur, is second tallest lighthouse in France with 365 steps, 75 metres tall and views stretching 40 kilometres. Open every day but closed between 12 -2pm. Closed in January.

Valognes

Versailles of the North – Cider Museum – see section The history of our region for more details.

Bayeux Tapestry and Cathedral

A truly beautiful Norman cathedral with magical spires. The Tapestry tells the story of the Battle of Hastings 1066. It is an extraordinary piece of work, quite unlike any other tapestry. It is 70metres long and impressively displayed. Bishop Odo commissioned it in 1077.

Villedieu Les Poeles

Copper saucepans and casseroles are made here in the traditional manner. Go to the centre of the town and you will find many shops selling copper ware made in the local foundries which are open to visitors. 1 hour drive from Hibou Blanc.

Mont St Michel
www.ot-montsaintmichel.com

Often called the ‘Wonder of the Western World’ is a rocky tidal island that is the site of a medieval Benedictine Abbey. Until recently it was only possible to visit the island at low tide but a multi million pound renovation has provided a constant means of access.

It is possible to stay on the island and to eat there and after the long winding path with its hundreds of steps you may feel this is a good idea. In late summer a spectacular firework display attracts many visitors.

St Lo Stud - National Stud ‘Le Pin’
Thursdays – June to Sep at 3pm | Entry - 6 Euros.
www.haras-national-du-pin.com

Where the Queen has been known to buy horses. The stud is one of the largest in France and offers guided tours and displays with carriages. Riders perform original acts in a majestic courtyard. Arrive early to get a good view!. St Lo was heavily bombed during the war but has been rebuilt and though the new buildings are not attractive, the town has managed to preserves some of the original ramparts and towers.

Granville

has a special charm with its mixture of very old walled town centre with elegant Victorian villas on the cliffs. It is home to the famous Christian Dior museum. The museum was the house where Christian Dior grew up, with the gardens that gave him inspiration for many of his favourite scents. For fashion lovers, there are many of his original gowns and dresses on display. Part of the harbour has been sealed off creating a tide-proof bay.

Walks

Walking is taken quite seriously here and there are an infinite number of walks to choose from. Many are well marked and documented. Brochures detailing directions are at the house. Or check with the Tourist Office in St Vaast.

Gardens

The peninsular is fortunate that not all the grand houses were destroyed during the war, leaving about six with lovely gardens that have either been maintained, restored or are in the process of restoration. Brochures to these gardens are at the house.

Givernay - Monet’s garden – is a day trip being about a two hour drive from Hibou Blanc.

Marais/Marshes

An area designated to the preservation of wild life, that extends from south of Valognes to Carentan approx. In the old, old days during winter the Marais turned the peninsular into an island. If you look at a map you will see how easily this was possible. Today however, it is a tourist centre with guided tours along the waterways, in flat bottomed boats. It is run by an Englishman called William Ardley.

Details of tours and opening hours are at the house.

Useful to know...

Cinema

Cinema at Reville showing French and English films - notices of what’s on are to be found in most shops.
Tel Tel 08 92 68 00 71

Odeon Cinema in Cherbourg - Tel 02 33 23 88 54

Salon de Beauté, 17 Quai Tourville.
Beauty Salon in St Vaast - Tel 02 33 54 42 90

This is a very chic newly extended spa offering up to date body treatments with hot stones, manicures and waxing.

Other Activities

Cooking courses, Art Galleries, Antique Fairs, Zoos, go to the very helpful Tourist Centre in St Vaast.

Street Markets

There are Street Markets in different towns, most days of the week. Saturday is St Vaast; Tuesday is Quettehou. For other towns see list at house.