We had a continental breakfast (croissant and coffee) at a crèperie across the street from the museum where we will start our day.
Bayeux is only 20 minutes from Arromanches where there is a Musée du Débarquement which will give us a solid understanding of the Invasion from planning to execution. Two videos with footage from the invasion along with models of the landing site and the building of the artificial Mulberry Harbor explain how D-Day unfolded.
Parts of Mulberry Harbor are still visible in the waters off Arromanches.
|A piece of Mulberry Harbor|
|view over Arromanches|
|Parts of Mulberry Harbor left in Arromanches|
Compared to the last time Dave and I visited these D-Day sites, the signage is much improved and the experience is much more personalized as we see and hear stories about military and civilians who were present at the time.
We stop next at Longues-sur-Mer to see German pillboxes responsible for shelling on Gold (British), Juno (Canadian) and Omaha beaches.
|communications bunker on edge of cliff|
|German pillboxes with field of Colza (plant used to make Canola oil) in foreground|
Our next stop along Hitler's Atlantic Wall defense system was at Pointe du Hoc.
|Pointe du Hoc|
|bomb crater at Pointe du Hoc|
|Pointe du Hoc|
The statistics on deaths on D-Day and in the following weeks of liberating inland towns are staggering and nowhere is that more striking and emotionally charged than at the American Cemetery at Omaha Beach.
And then you leave the center, walk along above Omaha Beach (which is now empty and grey with the day's dullness)
|Unidentified bodies were buried as Comrade in Arms|
The drive back to Bayeux is subdued and reflective.
|Hedge rows line the roads on our way home|
|Memorial at the American Cemetery|