When we think of beaches in Normandy we think first of all of the Normandy Landing Beaches, where the troops landed during the start of the D-Day invasion - and which ultimately helped bring an end to World War 2.
It is true that these landing beaches still attract many visitors, and are also very attractive beaches in their own right, but a great deal of the coast of Normandy has noteworthy towns and seaside resorts, and there are a lot of beaches of interest in all coastal parts of the region.
Of course, in Normandy there are also such renowned coastal destinations as the island and abbey of Mont-Saint-Michel, not best known for its beaches but an unmissable highlight of your trip to the Normandy coast and one of the most visited monuments in France.
Resorts and beaches in Normandy, France
There are several different regions of coastline in Normandy which have their own characteristics and points of interest. We mention the main beaches and resorts for each of these regions below, starting from the north-east and moving towards the south-west.
The Alabaster Coast is best known for, and named after, its dramatic white cliffs and rock formations. This is the part of coast nearest the port towns of Dieppe and Le Havre. Hint: just because you associate somewhere with a channel ferry terminal doesn't mean the town isn't worth visiting!.
The scenery in and around Etretat is some of the most dramatic cliff scenery in France. See the Etretat guide.
See the Fécamp guide.
The Cote Fleurie includes some of the most upmarket and picturesque resorts on the Normandy Coast
See the Honfleur guide.
Trouville is one of the the most popular resorts in Normandy and an attractive town to explore. See the Trouville guide.
Our personal favourite resort on the Normandy coast, Deauville has been established as a popular resort for more than 100 years. See the Deauville guide.
See the Cabourg guide.
See the Houlgate guide.
See the Dives-sur-Mer guide.
Eastern Cotentin Peninsula
The section of coast between the Cotentin peninsula and Courseulles-sur-Mer includes most of the Normandy landing Beaches. At Arromanches-les-Bains you can see the floating port used during the landings.
We have a separate guide for visitors to the Normandy Landing Beaches (Sword, Juno, Gold, Omaha and Utah beaches) because of their historical importance and significance, and because they tend to attract visitors because of their historical importance. See Normandy Landing Beaches for the guide.
Western Cotentin Peninsula
The Cote des Havres is on the western side of the Cotentin peninsula. The beaches along this section of coast are less visited than the better known Normandy beaches further east. It is here, close to the border between Britany and Normandy, that you can visit the world famous abbey of Mont-Saint-Michel..
See the Granville guide.
For more highlights in the region see our Normandy travel guide.