Sunday July 30th, La Mailleraye-sur-Seine

Omaha Beach

Finally, the sun came out, and it turned into a very nice day. We headed to the coast and the beaches made famous by the D-Day Landings on June 6, 1944. It was a great drive through the country and along the coast. I kept thinking about what it must have been like 74 years ago for the people living in these old farm houses and little villages, and for the tens of thousands of soldiers as they made their way across this farm land. History comes to life.
These country houses would have seen a lot of action during D-Day

Temporary wharves used for the landings.

Omaha Beach

Lots of war museums along the coastal road.

The photo shows the destruction of this church, now it is beautifully restored.
We were able stop at Omaha Beach and I went for a walk down on the sands. Such a huge flat beach, and can well understand why it was chosen for the landings. We continued along the coastal route which is lined with museums and stores selling memorabilia. And just so many vehicles winding through the narrow streets. Guess being a Sunday made it even busier. Decided that it was time for the kiwis to leave the beaches for the tourists and head around Bayeux, and a late lunch stop at Courseulles-sur-Mer.
Had read about some nice Aires on the Seine River which seemed like a good spot after the busy coast. We have set Jilly up to not take us on toll routes and in hindsight this was one day when perhaps we should have paid our money instead of following the rather “interesting” route Jilly set up. We seemed to criss-cross all over the place and the roads were very, very busy. It was five o’clock when we finally arrived at La Mailleraye-sur-Seine, a small but rather nice village with the grassy Aire positioned right beside the river. Found a prime spot on a bend in the river where quite a number of boats pass by each day. A perfect place to chill for a few days. The river is still quite tidal here with quite a rise and fall in the levels, and the boats seem to work with the tides, guessing it is too shallow at low tide.
Soon realised we had parked between two English vans and we joined them for the evening sitting outside on a perfect warm night. You realise when you haven’t had a conversation with anyone speaking English for some time, how good it is to chat. It turned into quite a party!!!
A perfect evening on the Seine.


Anonymous said…
Dear Meg and Ian, lovely to follow your adventures and have grand images to tie to the description. Lots of cycle trails in Richmond/Nelson if you are looking for more exercise and rural views in the future. Vicki n I are fine, have some lovely sunny days here and with the sun low in the sky just shines into the house, on the gloomy days we miss the fire going 24/7 with the magnificent firewood. Delighted that your adventure continues to progress well with lots of new exploring. Lots of Love, Vicki n Ed
Anonymous said…
Great to hear all going well and that you're enjoying the bikes so much. Interesting that you are at the landing sites in Normandy. We have just watched Dunkirk which was the Allies leaving! Also enjoyed two nights in Ypres in Belgium at the end of our river trip and toured the WW 1 sites of Messine and Passchendale with a very knowledgeable guide. He showed Brian exactly where the NZ troops were on the day his great uncle was badly wounded. Loving the posts and photos. Keep well xxxx The Coxes
Anonymous said…
Dear Meg and Ian, it is lovely to hear all about the adventures you have had since leaving the river. We arrived back in the UK on 7th August after staying in some lovely places on our way back to the tunnel. We moved up to Coventry on 9th August as I had to work on 10th and 11th - the campsite was so beautiful, set in a wood. Tree creatures, rabbits, squirrels - I thought how you would have loved it with you camera. We think about you both a lot and hope that you are both ok. Keep up the lovely posts. xxxx Gill and Paul Lucas