Team-BHP > Buckle Up > Travelogues


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 10th January 2020, 20:21   #1
Team-BHP Support
 
BlackPearl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Calcutta/London
Posts: 2,818
Thanked: 8,787 Times
Default Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip

The advantage of staying in the UK and having a Schengen Visa is that one can easily cross the English Channel in a ferry and visit mainland Europe. It was a long weekend, but we were not able decide where to go. Started searching on the net and saw a mind boggling picture of Mont-Saint-Michel (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mont-Saint-Michel)

It was quite some distance from Calais and would be a hectic trip, but seemed worth a try. The itinerary looked like this -

Day 1 - London to Dieppe
Day 2 - Dieppe to Mont-Saint-Michel via Étretat and Le Havre
Day 3 - Mont-Saint-Michel to Rouen
Day 4 - Rouen to London via Dieppe

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-screenshot-20200110-16.10.34.png

I am not going into visa, permits, vehicle requirements, driving rules in Europe, etc as all the details are there in this post -
https://www.team-bhp.com/forum/trave...ml#post4644900 (England to Europe in a little red Mini Cooper!)


Day 1: London to Dieppe

We started from London late in the afternoon after office. Took the DFDS ferry from Dover in UK to Calais in France. Started eating immediately after boarding the ferry.

Fish and chips with mushy peas
Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_99831.jpg

Meat Lasagne with lots of chips
Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_99791.jpg

Calais to Dieppe was about 180 Kilometers. We reached the beautiful property a little before sunset. The place looked straight out of a picture postcard.

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-dsc_26841.jpg

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_00121.jpg

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_02901.jpg

The room was simple but neat and tidy.

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_01661.jpg

The hosts were wonderful. But what set this place apart were the pets. A super friendly dog and an adorable cat. The dog was always pestering the cat and became very jealous if anyone became too friendly with the cat. The cat on the other hand behaved like a dog. The moment she sees you she will come running like a dog. We had a fun time playing with both of them.

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_00431.jpg

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_00811.jpg

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_01121.jpg

As I had said earlier, the dog became so jealous every time I was cuddling the cat that he started jumping around.

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_00601.jpg

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_01001.jpg

He was jumping up and down so much that most of his pictures were blurred.

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_01031.jpg

A rare picture where he was calm!

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_02091.jpg

The day had been quite hectic. Office, drive, ferry, further drive and then playing with the cat and the dog resulted in us crashing into the bed, exhausted!

Last edited by BlackPearl : 19th January 2020 at 08:26.
BlackPearl is online now   (30) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 18th January 2020, 07:15   #2
Team-BHP Support
 
BlackPearl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Calcutta/London
Posts: 2,818
Thanked: 8,787 Times
Default re: Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip

Day 2 - Dieppe to Mont-Saint-Michel via Étretat and Le Havre

We bid goodbye to the hosts and the pets. The place where we spent the previous night was outside Dieppe. So the plan was to visit Dieppe town and then travel all along the coast towards Mont-Saint-Michel.

From Wiki -
Quote:
Dieppe is a coastal community in the Arrondissement of Dieppe in the Seine-Maritime department in the Normandy region of northern France. A port on the English Channel, at the mouth of the Arques river, famous for its scallops, and with a regular ferry service to Newhaven in England, Dieppe also has a popular pebbled beach, a 15th-century castle and the churches of Saint-Jacques and Saint-Remi. The mouth of the Scie river lies in the Canton of Dieppe-Ouest at Hautot-sur-Mer.
The Castle
Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-dsc_2716401.jpg

Pebbled Beach
Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_05401.jpg

From Dieppe we started driving along the coastline through Étretat and Le Havre. The drive was beautiful. We stopped at a few tourist attractions but could not spend much time as it was quite a long drive to Mont-Saint-Michel.

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-dsc_27381.jpg

Bois des Moutiers

From Wiki -
Quote:
The Bois des Moutiers is located in Varengeville-sur-Mer, Normandy, France. This estate of 30 acres (0.12 km2) is well known for its rhododendrons, azaleas and magnolias, which were introduced and naturalized among local flora. The house and gardens, both dating from the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries,[1] are a first-class example, unique in France, of the work of the famous English partnership of architect Edwin Lutyens and garden designer Gertrude Jekyll.

A large park overlooking the sea and formal gardens surrounding a manor house, where the original owner's descendants still live, make up the Bois des Moutiers. The estate is listed as a historical monument[2] and a Remarkable Garden of France.
Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_05711.jpg

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-dsc_2749731.jpg

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-dsc_2750741.jpg

The garden was beautiful but we rushed through a few sections with a promise to go back soon.

A few pictures of places we visited along the route.

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-dsc_2773971.jpg

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-dsc_277611.jpg

It was late evening by the time we reached a small town near Mont-Saint-Michel, called Beauvoir. Our hotel was booked here. We wanted to visit Mont-Saint-Michel after freshening up at the hotel. I wanted to get a few night shots of the magnificent structure, but we were not sure how to get there. Asking a few people did not help and we got lost. After roaming around for some time we had to give up and return to the hotel.

Last edited by BlackPearl : 19th January 2020 at 08:28.
BlackPearl is online now   (22) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 18th January 2020, 07:53   #3
Team-BHP Support
 
BlackPearl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Calcutta/London
Posts: 2,818
Thanked: 8,787 Times
Default re: Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip

Day 3 - Mont-Saint-Michel to Rouen

After a good night's sleep and French breakfast, we started for Mont-Saint-Michel again. This time we found out the car park. Cars are not allowed to go till Mont-Saint-Michel anymore, so one has to park the car at the car park. Free shuttle is available from the car park to Mont-Saint-Michel. But it is advisable to walk while going towards Mont-Saint-Michel and take the shuttle while coming back. It takes about 40 to 50 minutes to walk to Mont-Saint-Michel from the car park.

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-dsc_279811.jpg

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-dsc_27921161.jpg

One of these can be hired as well instead of taking the shuttle
Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_08951.jpg

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-dsc_28031271.jpg

From Mont-Saint-Michel we took the shuttle back to the car park and then went to visit the Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial, near the Omaha beach. Normandy is famous for the D-Day landings of World War II.

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-screenshot-20200119-02.13.51.png

From Wiki
Quote:
The Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial is a World War II cemetery and memorial in Colleville-sur-Mer, Normandy, France, that honours American troops who died in Europe during World War II. It is located on the site of the former temporary battlefield cemetery of Saint Laurent, covers 172.5 acres and contains 9,388 burials.[1]

A memorial in the cemetery includes maps and details of the Normandy landings and military operations that followed. At the memorial's centre is Spirit of American Youth Rising from the Waves, a bronze statue. The cemetery also includes two different flag poles which at two different times people gather around the American flags to watch them lower and fold both flags. This not only honours the United States but all the 9388 people in the cemetery plus everyone who fought in the war.

The cemetery, which was dedicated in 1956, is the most visited cemetery run by the American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) with one million visitors a year. In 2007, the ABMC opened a visitor centre at the cemetery, relating the global significance and meaning of Operation Overlord.[2]

A chill ran down my spine at the sight!

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_10321.jpg

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-dsc_28301531.jpg

From the war memorial, we went towards the town of Rouen, our destination for the night.

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-screenshot-20200119-03.01.27.png

The hotel in Rouen was booked right in the middle of the town centre. It was a lovely location and all the tourist places were quite nearby. We roamed around the town in the evening and had dinner at a wonderful restaurant named Pascaline. It is a must visit. The address is 5 Rue de la Poterne, 76000 Rouen, France. Unfortunately we can't find any pics of the food. That only happens on those rare occasions when our famished souls cannot get any time to click pictures before devouring the food!

Last edited by BlackPearl : 19th January 2020 at 16:04.
BlackPearl is online now   (20) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 19th January 2020, 07:40   #4
Team-BHP Support
 
BlackPearl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Calcutta/London
Posts: 2,818
Thanked: 8,787 Times
Default re: Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip

Day 4 - Rouen to London via Dieppe

Next morning we visited the tourist places of Rouen. It is a very small town, hence does not take much time to go around.

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_10861.jpg

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-dsc_28802021.jpg

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_10881.jpg

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-dsc_28741961.jpg

Our ferry from Calais back to Dover was at 10 in the night and we had plenty of time left. So we thought of taking a detour via Dieppe and have lunch there before going to Calais.

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-screenshot-20200119-02.33.17.png

During our last visit we had missed out on the seafood in Dieppe. This time we planned to utilise our time to the fullest. Unfortunately, by the time we reached Dieppe, most of the restaurants had stopped serving lunch. So we would have to wait till 5 pm before we could get dinner! But we were determined to have seafood and were willing to wait. Luckily we found a restaurant that was serving sandwich and Crème brûlée. We had them as appetisers.

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_13871.jpg

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_13901.jpg

At around 5 in the evening we found a restaurant that was kind enough to take our order for dinner. It will not be an exaggeration if I say that it was one the best seafood platters that I have ever had. No one can beat France when it comes to food!

Trying whelks for the first time. I have become a fan! (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whelk)

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_14411.jpg

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_14711.jpg

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_14731.jpg

The smile says it all!
Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_14761.jpg

The rest of the trip, from Dieppe to Calais to Dover and finally to London was uneventful and frankly speaking, quite boring. I have deliberately tried to post less pictures of the vehicle in this trip as my friends have complained that I am flooding social media with pictures of my cars from all angles! But it will be gross injustice if I do not post a parting shot of the beloved Mini Cooper. It was again a flawless performance by the little car!

au revoir!

Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip-img_03881.jpg

Last edited by BlackPearl : 19th January 2020 at 08:39.
BlackPearl is online now   (42) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 19th January 2020, 09:19   #5
Team-BHP Support
 
vb-san's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: S'pore/Thrissur
Posts: 5,190
Thanked: 5,925 Times
Default re: Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip

Thread moved from the Assembly Line to the Travelogues Section.

Wonderful travelogue BlackPearl! Thank you for sharing
vb-san is offline   (3) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 19th January 2020, 11:24   #6
Team-BHP Support
 
CrAzY dRiVeR's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: India
Posts: 13,056
Thanked: 37,168 Times
Default re: Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip

Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackPearl View Post
The place looked straight out of a picture postcard.
What I felt for most of the images - What a beautiful place!

Thanks for sharing.
CrAzY dRiVeR is offline   (2) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 20th January 2020, 13:04   #7
BHPian
 
ChiragM's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 760
Thanked: 6,454 Times
Default Re: Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip

Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackPearl View Post
The advantage of staying in the UK and having a Schengen Visa is that one can easily cross the English Channel in a ferry and visit mainland Europe.
I made decent use of that as well when I was there. Not just the ferry, took the train as well a few times. Much faster.

Amazing pictures. I never got the chance to visit Normandy. Lots of places left to visit in France with lots of history as well. Maybe some other time. Sweet pics of your Cooper as well.
ChiragM is online now   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 20th January 2020, 14:55   #8
BHPian
 
PapaBravo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: KOL-DEL-LKO
Posts: 610
Thanked: 2,611 Times
Default Re: Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip

Every picture in the TL is a postcard material.

The D810 is being used as it should be now. Short & crisp travelogue. Thank you for taking us on the this beautiful trip to France.

Cheers,

Pawan
PapaBravo is offline   (3) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 20th January 2020, 15:00   #9
Team-BHP Support
 
Gannu_1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Madras
Posts: 5,697
Thanked: 12,820 Times
Default Re: Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip

Crisp travelogue and great pics Sumitro! Thanks for sharing!

Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackPearl View Post
Omaha beach. Normandy is famous for the D-Day landings of World War II.
Every time I read about Normandy, the Omaha beach landing sequence from the movie Saving Private Ryan comes to mind!

Would love to visit this place some day.
Gannu_1 is offline   (3) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 20th January 2020, 16:20   #10
Team-BHP Support
 
BlackPearl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Calcutta/London
Posts: 2,818
Thanked: 8,787 Times
Default Re: Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip

Quote:
Originally Posted by vb-san View Post
[b]
Wonderful travelogue BlackPearl! Thank you for sharing
Thank you vb-san!

Quote:
Originally Posted by CrAzY dRiVeR View Post
What I felt for most of the images - What a beautiful place!
Thank you CD. Yes Normandy is really beautiful.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChiragM View Post
Amazing pictures. I never got the chance to visit Normandy. Lots of places left to visit in France with lots of history as well. Maybe some other time. Sweet pics of your Cooper as well.
Thank you ChiragM!

Quote:
Originally Posted by PapaBravo View Post
Every picture in the TL is a postcard material.
Thank you PapaBravo!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gannu_1 View Post
Every time I read about Normandy, the Omaha beach landing sequence from the movie Saving Private Ryan comes to mind!
Thank you Gannu. I have been watching a lot of WW2 movies and documentaries after coming back from this trip. In fact watched the movie Darkest Hour last night. It is a good movie if you have not watched it yet.
BlackPearl is online now   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 20th January 2020, 17:47   #11
Distinguished - BHPian
 
Samba's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Kolkata
Posts: 1,426
Thanked: 11,527 Times
Default Re: Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip

Small, crisp & neat! Loved reading it. It's a beautiful place & captured beautifully too.
Fell in love with the cat & the dog.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackPearl View Post
[b] I have deliberately tried to post less pictures of the vehicle in this trip as my friends have complained that I am flooding social media with pictures of my cars from all angles!
Am sure, they are not in Team-Bhp! As Bhpian's wont get bored by seeing car pics! So please keep sharing your car pics as much as possible!
Samba is offline   (4) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 20th January 2020, 17:59   #12
BHPian
 
ts1506's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: BLR | CCU
Posts: 161
Thanked: 300 Times
Default Re: Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip

Crisp travelogue of a picture perfect place. Just what we've come to expect from one of your threads.

Thanks for sharing, its helping me brew up new travel plans for myself :P
ts1506 is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 20th January 2020, 20:51   #13
Distinguished - BHPian
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Calcutta
Posts: 4,331
Thanked: 4,442 Times
Default Re: Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip

Nice travelogues.

Shows the true purpose of social media - to make others jealous!

Why the Mini and not the LR?

Dieppe has a WW2 connection also. Not really publicised I guess.

Regards
Sutripta
Sutripta is offline   (3) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 21st January 2020, 12:29   #14
BHPian
 
Samfromindia's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Kolkata - Pune
Posts: 444
Thanked: 1,296 Times
Default Re: Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip

Quote:
Originally Posted by PapaBravo View Post
Every picture in the TL is a postcard material.

The D810 is being used as it should be now. Short & crisp travelogue. Thank you for taking us on the this beautiful trip to France.
Amen ! Picture Post Card Perfect Snaps ! Amazing virtual tour of the place in all its beauty
Samfromindia is offline   (3) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 21st January 2020, 17:10   #15
Team-BHP Support
 
BlackPearl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Calcutta/London
Posts: 2,818
Thanked: 8,787 Times
Default Re: Normandy in a Mini Cooper - A weekend trip

Quote:
Originally Posted by Samba View Post
Small, crisp & neat! Loved reading it. It's a beautiful place & captured beautifully too.
Fell in love with the cat & the dog.
Thank you Samba!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ts1506 View Post
Crisp travelogue of a picture perfect place. Just what we've come to expect from one of your threads.
Thank you ts1506!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sutripta View Post
Nice travelogues.
Thank you Sutripta Da!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sutripta View Post
Shows the true purpose of social media - to make others jealous!
Really! I have never been jealous of anyone. I think that part of the brain has not developed properly. Before you point out, yes there might be other parts of my brain as well that have remained under-developed

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sutripta View Post
Why the Mini and not the LR?
This trip was done last year before we got the LR.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sutripta View Post
Dieppe has a WW2 connection also. Not really publicised I guess.
Yes. There is a place in Canada named Dieppe after the town in France as many Canadian soldiers had died in Operation Jubilee.

Here are the Wiki links -

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dieppe,_New_Brunswick

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dieppe_Raid

Quote:
Originally Posted by Samfromindia View Post
Amen ! Picture Post Card Perfect Snaps ! Amazing virtual tour of the place in all its beauty
Thank you Samfromindia!
BlackPearl is online now   (3) Thanks Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Mini Cooper S and Mini Convertible : Driven suhaas307 Test-Drives & Initial Ownership Reports 83 1st January 2020 21:46
The legend of Shani the Mini - My Mini Cooper S JCW quickdraw Test-Drives & Initial Ownership Reports 25 9th December 2019 12:37
Prague & Germany road-trip in a Mini Cooper Uprasenjit Travelogues 10 26th March 2018 22:32
Fantastic France -- Rennes, Paris, Normandy, Saint Malo, Mount Saint Michael sanjaykaul Travelogues 82 28th April 2011 07:36


All times are GMT +5.5. The time now is 15:54.

Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Team-BHP.com
Proudly powered by E2E Networks