An Amazing time In Northern France With School Part Two

posted in: Blog | 16

As I explained in my last post, I went on a trip with the rest of my school year to Northern France (mainly Normandy and Brittany) to learn French, and had a fabulous time. Here are some more things that I really enjoyed…

The Chateau Of Fougères

The Beautiful Castle In Fougères

Fougères is a lovely town on the border of Normandy and Brittany, and it is fascinating – the castle was originally only a wooden fort, but was destroyed by King Henry II of England in 1166, and quickly rebuilt by Raoul II Baron de Fougères. The castle wasn’t involved in the Hundred Years’ War until 1449, when it was taken by surprise by an English mercenary. In 1488 the French troops won the castle back after a siege and the castle lost its military role. Today the castle belongs to the municipality and is one of Europe’s largest medieval fortresses.

There is loads to see inside the castle, as there is just so much history to explore. We walked up one of the 13 towers and looked at the sublime views, before learning about what life was originally like in the castle and discovering cool facts about battle tactics. Something that really interested me was that French windows were slimmer than English ones, as they used crossbows for defence, whereas Englishmen used bows and arrows.

The castle also provides audio tours.

St. Hilaire-du-Harcouet Market

My friends and I had a wonderful time running around this market. Using our French skills, we bought pretty much everything! The market sold so many things from pastries to paintings, cheese to chocolates, and we wasted an awful lot of our money…

Everyone was friendly, all the food was fresh and delicious and the atmosphere was incredible. however, the best part by far was trying to haggle. I spent aaages trying to convince a man to let me have a purse for four euros instead of five! Luckily, I succeeded, and by the end of it my friends and I were in fits of laughter.

The market was probably the highlight of the whole trip, especially because a crepe with sugar was only 50 cents…

The D-Day Museum – A 360° Film

After a long drive, we were all delighted to finally get to the D-Day Museum. We didn’t go through the whole museum, as we only had enough time to watch a 360° film. It was projected onto screens all around the room, and showed unbelievable film footage and pictures from the war.

It was very well put together, and included astonishing videos such as bombs falling down from aeroplanes onto land, tanks and an especially haunting one of a man having his face sewn up. The film was very moving, and afterwards I was blinking back tears.

Omaha Beach

Omaha Beach, commonly known as Omaha, was the code name for one of the five sectors of the Allied invasion of German-occupied France in the Normandy landings on 6 June 1944, during World War II. Nowadays, it a graveyard for the American soldiers of the war.

The graveyard is full of trees, plants, and rows and rows of white crosses and Stars of David for Jews. While walking around the graveyard,  I felt extremely emotional thinking about all the people who lay in the graveyard, and even cried at the anonymous graves, just thinking about the fact that no one even knew who the person was, let alone anything about them. It was lovely to see the flowers put by them, and even though we spent an hour walking by the graves, I wanted to spend the rest of the day visiting every single one.

So, those were my highlights of a brilliant trip to Northern France. Even though everything was so diverse and it was quite isolated, I still had a fantastic time and loved every second. I would definitely recommend a visit.

Read my first post on my trip to Northern France


16 Responses

  1. Jane

    Wow – it looks as though you had an amazing time. I would love to go to Northern France. The D-Day museum in particular looks fascinating, and I bet Omaha beach was very emotional.

    Lovely post 🙂

    • J

      Thank you very much! Normandy was incredible and there was loads to do there; I would love to go back and see more, such as the Bayeux tapestry.

  2. Alli Blair

    Whoa – a 360 degree film! Never heard of or seen one of these! I’d love to experience all the things mentioned in your post!

    • J

      There were so many incredible things to do in France, and the 360° film was definitely a highlight.

    • J

      I agree – I think that I really improved with my French skills this year! I loooooove French markets; the pastries are DELICIOUS!

    • J

      Northern France is lovely – there is loads to see and do, so I would definitely recommend it…

    • J

      France is amazing. I loved going to the north, but we have also been to other places, such as Paris. It was amazing to go up the Eiffel Tower!

  3. Milosz Zak

    There were lots of Canadians who died at Juno – I’ll have to visit the place one day, for sure. Great photos, love what you’ve done with them.

    • J

      You should definitely visit one of the beaches, and thanks about the photos – my phone’s camera is terrible, but my friends took some great ones!

  4. Christine @afamilyday

    Looks like you had an amazing (and, dare I say, educational) trip. My daughter is moving into year 7 and they do a very similar trip so I’ll have to share this with her.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *