Château Living in Normandy Vacation Tour

A 8 day trip to France 
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This exclusive itinerary offers you an authentic experience of the Norman lifestyle through behind-the-scenes introductions and visits to its finest private castles and gardens, along with private tours of its most legendary treasures and historic sites ranging from the Bayeux Tapestry and the D-Day beaches to Mont Saint Michel. Experience Normandy as most tourists never do!

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Most tours are customized for private travel.

General Information

Photos
Detailed Itinerary

Places Visited 

Paris, Giverny, the Seine River Valley, Honfleur, Caen, Bayeux, D-Day Beaches (Ste-Mère Eglise, Utah Beach, Pointe du Hoc, Omaha Beach, the American Cemetery at Colleville, Arromanches), Mont Saint Michel, Saint Malo, Villedieu-les-Poëles, et cetera.

Departure Dates 

This customized trip can be organized at any time of the year, though the ideal months from a climatic perspective are April through October.

Detailed Itinerary 

Day 1:

Welcome to the City of Light

Upon your arrival at Charles de Gaulle Airport, you will be greeted at the plane by our VIP representative who will whisk you through customs, baggage and security formalities. Our Hostess and driver will be there to welcome you and privately transfer you to your hotel in Paris, where she will assist you with the check-in. She will take this time to give you a brief orientation, answer your questions and provide recommendations if necessary.

This afternoon, enjoy a private Panoramic Tour of Paris with your English-speaking local guide and driver who will show you the most celebrated monuments in the City of Light. Your tour will be customized to your interests and may include sites such as the Arc de Triomphe, the Champs-Elysées, the Eiffel Tower, Napoleon’s tomb at the Invalides and the Gothic masterpieces Notre Dame Cathedral and Sainte Chapelle on the Ile de la Cité.

This evening, depending upon your energy level, you can choose between a quiet dinner and early to bed or a romantic stroll along the quays of the River Seine to admire the monuments and Eiffel Tower aglow in the evening light.

Day 2:

Welcome to Normandy - Giverny & the Seine River Valley

This morning, find your driver-guide waiting to accompany you on your journey to Normandy. Stop en route to tour Impressionist master Claude Monet’s house and gardens in Giverny. Stroll through the spectacular Japanese gardens that inspired his iconic water lily series. Tour the Musée de l’Impressionisme, where you may wish to have lunch. Then continue on along the Seine River Valley to the picturesque port of Honfleur.

In the early evening arrive at the fairy-tale Château de Canisy, your “home away from home” for the next few days. You will be welcomed to his ancestral home by owner Comte Denis de Kergorlay, President of the French Heritage Society and Europa Nostra (upon availability).

Over welcome drinks, meet your local specialist Guide who will present your itinerary and a selection of activities to highlight your stay. Prior to dinner, you will be treated to a private tour of this elegant and comfortable castle. Dinner will be served in the formal dining room and followed by coffee and after-dinner drinks in the drawing room with its open fireplace.

Day 3:

Norman Castles and Gardens & the Bayeux Tapestry

This morning, your expert guide and driver will accompany you on a private visit of several of Normandy’s most spectacular private castles and gardens. Begin your tour at the 17th century Château de Balleroy, designed by architect François Mansart, and its unique collection of hot-air balloons created by Malcolm Forbes. You will then proceed to the Château de Brouay to visit its cidrerie and sample some of its delicious apple cider at a lunch hosted in your honour by the chatelaine (upon availability).

Following lunch, your guide will unlock the gates to one of the most exceptional private gardens in France at the Château de Brécy. These Italianate gardens have been restored to their original 17th-century perfection by its current owner, the President of the French Comité des Parcs et Jardins.

Afterwards, tour the Bayeux Tapestry Museum where you will view the celebrated embroidery that commemorates the conquest of England by the Duke of Normandy at the Battle of Hastings in 1066. Finally, visit Bayeux Cathedral to see the nave where the eponymous Tapestry was originally displayed, and the numerous medieval half-timbered houses that surround it.

A candlelit dinner will be served at the Château de Canisy either in the formal dining room or the lovely music room at 8pm, followed by coffee and after-dinner drinks in the drawing room in front of the open fireplace.

Day 4:

The Norman D-Day Beaches

This morning, your expert guide and driver will take you on a private tour of the D-Day beaches, where the allied forces landed on June 6, 1944, and the American Cemetery at Colleville, one of the most moving memorials to their heroism. At lunchtime, choose from several cozy restaurants on the beach. Relive the Battle of Normandy during this informative full day tour that takes you to the legendary sites of Ste-Mère Eglise, Utah Beach, Pointe du Hoc and Omaha Beach. Your guide will adapt the tour to suit your expressed interests and may even introduce you to local people who still remember this epic struggle.

This evening, if you prefer, feel free to sample the regional cuisine of Normandy in a local restaurant.

Day 5:

Arromanches & the Peace Memorial at Caen

This morning, your expert local guide and driver will take you to Arromanches where the British created the world’s first artificial harbour, dubbed Port Winston as it was Churchill’s brainchild. Twenty of the original 115 concrete pontoons that formed this temporary harbor still defy the waves. They stand as a poignant reminder that Rommel’s formidable Atlantic Wall was successfully breached on June 6th, 1944. From there take the scenic route to Caen, the capital of the Contentin region, where you will visit the Castle and tomb of William the Conqueror at the Abbaye aux Hommes and the Caen Peace Memorial, best museum dedicated to WWII in France.

On your final evening at the Château de Canisy, celebrate with a candlelit dinner either in the formal dining room or in the lovely music room at 8pm, followed by coffee and after-dinner drinks in the drawing room in front of the open fireplace.

Day 6:

Mont St. Michel & Saint Malo

This morning, after bidding farewell to your hosts at the Château de Canisy, you will depart with your specialist guide and driver for a full-day tour of Mont St. Michel and Saint Malo. Discover one of Brittany’s most important ports at Saint Malo, which was the birthplace of Jacques Cartier who discovered the St. Lawrence Estuary and took possession of Canada for the French Crown in 1534. Your guide will lead you on a panoramic visit of its monumental ramparts before sitting down for lunch in one of its many crêperies overlooking the sea.

Following lunch, continue on to Mont Saint Michel. After checking into your hotel, follow in the footsteps of pilgrims and tourists who for more than 1000 years have climbed to the summit of this architectural marvel, one of the Wonders of the Modern World and a World Heritage Monument. Your specialist guide will lead you through the Abbey Church, Monastery and Cloisters, which were built over the original chapel dating from the year 709. From here you can contemplate the breathtaking panorama overlooking the vast tidal bay.

This evening, enjoy the unique privilege of having the Mont to yourselves, far from the crowds of tourists. You have a dinner reservation at the Mère Poularde, renowned for its omelettes, seafood and stunning views over the vast tidal bay of Mont Saint Michel.

Day 7:

Farewell to Normandy & the City of Lights

This morning, your driver will meet you in the hotel lobby to help you with your bags and privately transfer you back to Paris. You may wish to stop en route at Villedieu-les-Poëles, renowned for its copper and bell founderies.

Upon your return to the French capital, after checking into your hotel, you will be free to catch up on some last-minute shopping and explore Paris on your own. Take a romantic stroll through the Tuileries Gardens and perhaps stop at the Musée de l’Orangerie. Monet’s ethereal Waterlily Murals, which the Impressionist painter created specifically for the Orangerie in the 1920s, are alone well worth a visit.

Celebrate your final evening in Paris with a dinner cruise. Enjoy a gourmet meal while gliding past the illuminated monuments all reflected in the sparkling waters of the River Seine – a magical experience worthy of an Impressionist painting!

Day 8:

Departure day

This morning, your Hostess will be waiting for you in the lobby to assist you with the check-out formalities. Your driver will be there to help you with your bags and privately transfer you to the CDG airport for your return flight home.

Price

What's Included 

BASE PACKAGE INCLUDES:

  • Accommodation for 7 nights in a 4 or 5* hotel with breakfast in Paris and Normandy
  • Private transport with an English-speaking driver for airport/station transfers and all visits
  • Expert bilingual guides for all museum and programmed tours
  • Privileged access to numerous locations
  • Château Living program at the Château de Canisy
  • Private Lunch at the Château de Brouay (upon availability)
  • Dinner Cruise
  • Personal services of our company Hostess, including airport welcome, help with hotel check-in and check-out, and assistance throughout your stay
  • Personal Welcome Packs with maps and up-to-date information on local events
  • Reservations & tickets, allowing direct entrance to museums & monuments
  • VIP Meet & Greet at the airport, allowing for fast-track customs & security passage (for Air France/KLM Skyteam passengers)
  • All taxes

Price 

For this customized package, the price depends on variables such as the season, hotel choices and add-ons to the program.