Normandy Museum (Musée de Normandie)
Focusing on the ethnography and archaeology of the region, this museum is a nice respite from WWII-centric tourism, and a way to gain a deep and holistic appreciation of the Normandy region. Presenting a panorama of life among the various populations across the territory, displays start at prehistoric times and carry through to the great migrations of the upper Middle Ages, and the cultural upheavals of industrial society, from the Gauls to the Romans, from the Frankish kingdoms to the Norse pirates. All types of artifacts are on display, from archaeological objects to textiles and everyday objects. A full program of activities including guided tours, discovery trails, educational workshops, live performances are geared to suit all ages of visitors including children.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Normandy Museum is an ideal spot for history and culture lovers, including families.
- The museum is wheelchair accessible.
- A small entrance fee is required; those under 26 years of age are free to enter; everyone on the first Sunday of each month.
- A restaurant and cafe is on premises, with free wifi available.
- The museum is often confused with the Caen Memorial, which also has a museum.
How to Get There
Normandy Museum is located within the castle of William the Conquerer on Le Château in Caen. Take bus line A or B to Quatrans or Bellivet stops, or tram line T1 or T3 to the Château-Quatrans stop. If you are driving, there is parking for a fee at the foot of the castle. Parking reserved for people with reduced mobility is by the entrance facing the University. A train ride from Paris takes about 2 hours.
When to Get There
The museum is open daily from morning to evening, however, it is closed on Tuesdays from January through May and from November through December. Peak season for Caen, as well as the entire region of Normandy, is during the summer months. June especially sees many travelers who come to commemorate the anniversary of the D-Day landings.
Musée des Beaux-Arts Complement your deep dive into art with a visit to this outstanding museum, also located within the castle of William the Conqueror. The Musée des Beaux-Arts is home to one of the finest art collections in France, covering five centuries in total including a notable collection of 16th-century European painters and a peaceful outdoor sculpture park.