Lower Normandy is an administrative region of France. It was created in 1956, when the Normandy region was divided into Lower Normandy and Upper Normandy. Since 1st January 2016 these two regions have again been combined to form the one region of Normandy. The region includes three departments, Calvados, Manche and Orne, that cover the part of Normandy traditionally termed “Lower Normandy” lying west of the Dives River, the Pays d’Auge (except a small part remaining in Upper Normandy), a small part of the Pays d’Ouche (the main part remaining in Upper Normandy), the Norman Perche and part of the “French”Perche. The traditional districts of Lower Normandy include the Cotentin Peninsula and La Hague, the Campagne de Caen, the Norman Bocage, the Bessin and the Avranchin.
During the Second World War, the main thrust of Operation Overlord was focused on Lower Normandy. The beaches of Calvados were the site of the D-Day landings in June 1944. Lower Normandy suffered badly during the War, with many of its towns and villages being destroyed or badly damaged during the Battle of Normandy.
The region’s economy is heavily agricultural, with livestock and dairy farming, textiles and fruit production among its major industries. The region is the leader in France in the sectors of butter, fromage frais, soft cheeses, cider apples, cider, leeks, turnips, and flax. The region also breeds more horses than any other in France.
Normandy has been marked by the D-Day Landings and the Battle of Normandy that led to the liberation of France and Europe. Many sites, museums and memorials offer space for personal reflection on this important moment in history. D-Day sites, museums, cemeteries, German batteries, remains of the Atlantic Wall dotted throughout Normandy are committed to preserving and communicating the memory of these tragic events which profoundly affected history, the landscape and the population of a whole area.
The Abbaye aux Hommes (“Men’s Abbey”) is a former abbey church in the French city of Caen, Normandy. Dedicated to Saint Stephen (“Saint Étienne”), it is considered, along with the neighbouring Abbaye aux Dames (“Lady’s Abbey”), to be one of the most notable Romanesque buildings in Normandy.
On Tuesday the 6th of June 1944, 130,000 of the Allied forces set off to land in Normandy, on the beaches of Utah, Gold, Sword, Omaha and Juno in what was called, Operation Overlord. It was the largest seaborne invasion in history
Mont Saint-Michel –Saint Michael’s Mount, is a rocky tidal island and a commune in Normandy, France. It is located approximately one kilometre (just over half a mile) off the country’s north coast, at the mouth of the Couesnon River near Avranches. The island has been a strategic point holding fortifications since ancient times, and since the 8th century AD it became the seat of the Saint-Michel monastery, from which it draws the name.
Listed as a “Memory of the World” by UNESCO, the Bayeux Tapestry (Calvados) is an embroidery, 70 metres long, made in the 11th century.Celebrating the conquest of England by William, Duke of Normandy, this linen canvas was probably embroidered by monks in the south of England after the Battle of Hastings on October 14th, 1066.
In the cellars, Calvados ages only in oak casks. The Château du Breuil company chooses its barrels carefully, because the kind, size and age play a very important part in the quality of ageing. The subtle exchanges between wood, air and alcohol give Calvados its smooth flavour and bouquet. Each Calvados is different, each cellar master has his own jealously guarded secret.
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