Tag Archives: Normandy

11-12 June 2019:
Honfleur, France:
Impressions of Normandy and a Tapestry in Bayeux

By Corey Sandler, Destination Consultant Silversea Cruises

Honfleur is a medieval gem, hidden in plain sight, between the major French port of Le Havre across the Seine to the east and the D-Day beaches of Normandy to the west.

The town sits on the southern bank of the estuary of the River Seine, which winds its way inland past Rouen to Paris.

To the east is Normandy, the site of the D-day landings of June 6, 1944. We just missed the international commemoration of the 75th anniversary. Speaking for myself, I felt better about my visit–perhaps my tenth– without the distraction of bloviating politicians.

Here are some scenes from 11 June at Omaha Beach, the American cemetery at Colleville-sur-Mer, and at Arromanches.

THE D-DAY BEACHES AT NORMANDY

Omaha Beach. Photo by Corey Sandler
The American Cemetery at Colleville-sur-Mer. Photo by Corey Sandler
Remains of the Mulberry landing docks at Arromanches. Photo by Corey Sandler

BAYEUX

Also along the Normandy coast is the handsome city of Bayeux, home to one of the cultural treasures of humankind: The Bayeux Tapestry. It depicts  the events leading up to the Norman conquest of England culminating in the Battle of hastings in 1066, from the point of view of the Normans. 

A portion of the Bayeux Tapestry. Photo by Corey Sandler
Notre-dame-de-Bayeux. Photo by Corey Sandler

HONFLEUR

Honfleur was the birthplace of the artist Eugène Boudin and the composer and artist Erik Satie. And it was a favored place to visit for French painters Claude Monet and Gustave Courbet, English landscape artist William Turner, and writer and critic Charles Baudelaire.

While much of Le Havre on the other side of the river, and Normandy were pounded by the Allies in the lead-up to the D-Day landing or by the Germans in defending it, Honfleur survived the war relatively untouched.

During German occupation, authorities in Honfleur allowed the River Seine to silt up the harbor, making it of little military value. After the war, the harbor was dredged and was once again useful.

As a result, Honfleur is among the best preserved towns in Europe.

Honfleur dates back at least to the 11th century. From the start it was an important port for the transit of goods from Rouen to England. With the outbreak of the Hundred Years’ War, though, the tide ran the other way: Honfleur was occupied by the English in 1357 and again from 1419 to 1450.

Back under French control, it was used as the staging area for attacks on the English coast: Sandwich was assaulted and severely damaged in 1450s.

After the end of the Hundred Years War, the port was used for both trade and as the embarkation point for exploration: Local shipowner Binot Paulmier de Gonneville departed Honfleur in 1503 looking for a trade route to India. His ship “L’Espoir” (Hope) made it all the way to Brazil, the first French ship to touch its shores.

Three years later, native son Jean Denis went to Newfoundland island and the mouth of the Saint Lawrence in what is now Canada. That’s the course we’ll be following two months from now, when Silver Wind crosses over from London to Iceland and to the New World.

All photos and text Copyright 2019 by Corey Sandler, all rights reserved. See more photos on my website at http://www.coreysandler.com

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO PURCHASE ANY PHOTO OR AN AUTOGRAPHED COPY OF ONE OF MY BOOKS, PLEASE CONTACT ME.

SEE THE “How to Order a Photo or Autographed Book” TAB ON THIS PAGE FOR INSTRUCTIONS

————-

Now available, the revised Second Edition of “Henry Hudson Dreams and Obsession” by Corey Sandler, for the Amazon Kindle. You can read the book on a Kindle device, or in a Kindle App on your computer, laptop, tablet, or smartphone.

Here’s where to order an electronic copy for immediate delivery:

Henry Hudson Dreams and Obsession: The Tragic Legacy of the New World’s Least Understood Explorer (Kindle Edition)

21 June 2018:
Honfleur, France:
Cradle of Impressionism, Gateway to Normandy

By Corey Sandler, Destination Consultant Silversea Cruises

Honfleur is a medieval gem, hidden in plain sight between the major French port of Le Havre across the Seine to the east and the D-Day beaches of Normandy to the west.

While much of Normandy was pounded by the Allies in the D-Day landing or by the Germans in defending it,

During German occupation, authorities in Honfleur allowed the River Seine to silt up the harbor, making it of little military value.

Honfleur survived the war relatively untouched. After the war, the harbor was dredged and was once again useful.

As a result, Honfleur is among the best preserved towns in Europe.

Between Honfleur and Cherbourg are the beaches of Normandy.

More or less directly north, across La Manche (The Sleeve)—what the Brits call the English Channel—is Southampton.

NORMANDY

On this cruise I went with guests to the beautiful city of Rouen, where Joan of Arc met her end.

ROUEN

All photos and text Copyright 2018 by Corey Sandler, all rights reserved.

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO PURCHASE AN AUTOGRAPHED COPY OF ONE OF MY BOOKS, PLEASE CONTACT ME.

SEE THE “How to Order a Photo or Autographed Book” TAB ON THIS PAGE FOR INSTRUCTIONS

————-

Now available, the revised Second Edition of “Henry Hudson Dreams and Obsession” by Corey Sandler, for the Amazon Kindle. You can read the book on a Kindle device, or in a Kindle App on your computer, laptop, tablet, or smartphone.

If you would like to purchase an autographed copy, please see the tab on this page, “HOW TO ORDER A PHOTO OR AUTOGRAPHED BOOK”

Here’s where to order an electronic copy for immediate delivery:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00IA9QTBM

Henry Hudson Dreams and Obsession: The Tragic Legacy of the New World’s Least Understood Explorer (Kindle Edition)

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO PURCHASE AN AUTOGRAPHED COPY OF ONE OF MY BOOKS, PLEASE CONTACT ME.

SEE THE “How to Order a Photo or Autographed Book” TAB ON THIS PAGE FOR INSTRUCTIONS

30 May 2017:
Honfleur, France:
Hidden in Plain Sight

By Corey Sandler, Destination Consultant Silversea Cruises

Honfleur is a medieval gem, hidden in plain sight, between the major French port of Le Havre across the Seine to the east, and the D-Day beaches of Normandy to the west.

It’s a lovely place, with a certain je ne sais quoi, not at all like much of the rest of coastal France.

And so it seems no surprise that this was one of the sources of impressionism in art and a musical genius of evocative impressions.

Honfleur was the birthplace of the artist Eugène Boudin and the composer and artist Erik Satie.

And it was a favored place to visit for French painters Claude Monet and Gustave Courbet, English landscape artist William Turner, and writer and critic Charles Baudelaire.

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Honfleur France 4156-1

Honfleur France 4149-1

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While much of Normandy, about 50 miles or 32 kilometers way, was pounded by the Allies in the D-Day landing or by the Germans in defending it, Honfleur survived the war relatively untouched.

During German occupation, authorities in Honfleur allowed the River Seine to silt up the harbor, making it of little military value.

What remains is of great cultural value to us now.

A RETURN TO NORMANDY

Seventy-two years ago, Southampton was one of the ports of embarkation for the invasion forces of D-Day, along with Portsmouth and other places.

Today I went again to the beaches and the villages of Normandy, something that should be mandatory for historians, politicians, and anyone else of consequence.

Among the men and boys who landed at Normandy was my father,  and I take advantage of every opportunity to visit there.

A Normandy Album

BLOG Normandy France 01Sept2015-2466

BLOG Normandy France 01Sept2015-2468

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We begin at Omaha Beach,  one of the two principal American landing sites,  then went up on the bluff to the vast cemetery at Colleville-sur-Mer, the final resting place of about 13,000 Americans,  two thirds of them given benefit of a gravestone with their name,  the remainder–as the notation reads–known only to God.

At Arromanches the British constructed a massive artificial harbor that allows the full push to Germany to begin.

No one with a soul can visit these places and come away unmoved.

Text and images copyright 2017 by Corey Sandler. All rights reserved. If you would like to purchase a high-resolution image, please contact me.

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO PURCHASE AN AUTOGRAPHED COPY OF ONE OF MY BOOKS, PLEASE CONTACT ME.

SEE THE “How to Order a Photo or Autographed Book” TAB ON THIS PAGE FOR INSTRUCTIONS

————-

Now available, the revised Second Edition of “Henry Hudson Dreams and Obsession” by Corey Sandler, for the Amazon Kindle. You can read the book on a Kindle device, or in a Kindle App on your computer, laptop, tablet, or smartphone.

If you would like to purchase an autographed copy, please see the tab on this page, “HOW TO ORDER A PHOTO OR AUTOGRAPHED BOOK”

Here’s where to order an electronic copy for immediate delivery:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00IA9QTBM

Henry Hudson Dreams cover

Henry Hudson Dreams and Obsession: The Tragic Legacy of the New World’s Least Understood Explorer (Kindle Edition)

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO PURCHASE AN AUTOGRAPHED COPY OF ONE OF MY BOOKS,  PLEASE CONTACT ME.

SEE THE “How to Order a Photo or Autographed Book” TAB ON THIS PAGE FOR INSTRUCTIONS

1 September 2015
Honfleur and the Beaches of Normandy, France:

By Corey Sandler, Destination Consultant Silversea Cruises

Honfleur is a medieval gem, hidden in plain sight, between the major French port of Le Havre across the Seine to the east, and the D-Day beaches of Normandy to the west.

It’s a lovely place, with a certain je ne sais quoi, not at all like much of the rest of coastal France.

And so it seems no surprise that this was one of the sources of impressionism in art and a musical genius of evocative impressions.

Honfleur was the birthplace of the artist Eugène Boudin and the composer and artist Erik Satie.

And it was a favored place to visit for French painters Claude Monet and Gustave Courbet, English landscape artist William Turner, and writer and critic Charles Baudelaire.

Honfleur France 4156-1

Honfleur France 4149-1

Honfleur France 4139-1

Honfleur France 4131-1

While much of Normandy, about 50 miles or 32 kilometers way, was pounded by the Allies in the D-Day landing or by the Germans in defending it, Honfleur survived the war relatively untouched.

During German occupation, authorities in Honfleur allowed the River Seine to silt up the harbor, making it of little military value.

What remains is of great cultural value to us now.

A RETURN TO NORMANDY

We sailed out of Southampton,  England on Monday evening in a brisk breeze and under sullen, threatening skies.  We arrived this morning in Honfleur in an almost wintry first day of September

Seventy-one years ago, Southampton was one of the ports of embarkation for the invasion forces of D-Day, along with Portsmouth and other places

Among the men and boys who landed at Normandy was my father,  and I have always taken advantage of every opportunity to visit there.  And so I returned today with guests.

A Normandy Album

BLOG  Normandy France 01Sept2015-2466

BLOG Normandy France 01Sept2015-2468

BLOG Normandy France 01Sept2015-2493

BLOG Normandy France 01Sept2015-2494

BLOG Normandy France 01Sept2015-2506

BLOG Normandy France 01Sept2015-2505

BLOG Normandy France 01Sept2015-2497

We began at Omaha Beach,  one of the two principal American landing sites,  then went up on the bluff to the vast cemetery at Colleville-sur-Mer, the final resting place of about 13,000 Americans,  two thirds of them given benefit of a gravestone with their name,  the remainder–as the notation reads–known only to God.

We later visited Arromanches, where the British constructed a massive artificial harbor that allows the full push to Germany to begin.

No one with a soul can visit these places and come away unmoved,  and I know I will return again some day.

Text and images copyright 2015 by Corey Sandler. All rights reserved. If you would like to purchase a high-resolution image, please contact me.

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO PURCHASE AN AUTOGRAPHED COPY OF ONE OF MY BOOKS, PLEASE CONTACT ME.

SEE THE “How to Order a Photo or Autographed Book” TAB ON THIS PAGE FOR INSTRUCTIONS

————-

Now available, the revised Second Edition of “Henry Hudson Dreams and Obsession” by Corey Sandler, for the Amazon Kindle. You can read the book on a Kindle device, or in a Kindle App on your computer, laptop, tablet, or smartphone.

If you would like to purchase an autographed copy, please see the tab on this page, “HOW TO ORDER A PHOTO OR AUTOGRAPHED BOOK”

Here’s where to order an electronic copy for immediate delivery:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00IA9QTBM

Henry Hudson Dreams cover

Henry Hudson Dreams and Obsession: The Tragic Legacy of the New World’s Least Understood Explorer (Kindle Edition)

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO PURCHASE AN AUTOGRAPHED COPY OF ONE OF MY BOOKS,  PLEASE CONTACT ME.

SEE THE “How to Order a Photo or Autographed Book” TAB ON THIS PAGE FOR INSTRUCTIONS

10 June 2013 Honfleur, France

We’re off on a voyage from London to Copenhagen, with stops in France, Belgium, Germany, and Sweden.

Silver Cloud glided across La Manche (The Sleeve) or as Anglophones may know it better, the English Channel from Southampton to Honfleur in the Calvados region of France.

Honfleur is an extraordinary place, one of the best-preserved old towns of the region. It survived both world wars nearly intact, with heavy wooden beam and decorated plaster walls.

For me, I walk the streets of Honfleur with the hypnotic music of Erik Satie in my head. That may have been his intent, and he almost certainly wrote his best-known pieces while stoned on absinthe. Satie was born in Honfleur, as was the painter Eugene Boudin. Both of them were important influences on later impressionists including Corbet and Monet.

Here are a few photos from Honfleur…

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Le Vieux Bassin in Honfleur

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Inside Ste. Catherine’s

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The birthplace of another quirky Honfleurais, the 19th century humorist Alphonse Allais. He wrote poetry that specialized in auditory puns (homophonous verse) and also is semi-famous for the earliest known example of a completely silent musical composition. His Funeral March for the Obsequies of a Deaf Man of 1897 consists of nine blank measures. Satie would approve.