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Honfleur - The Gateway to Normandy

The beautiful town Honfleur is situated on the mouth of the Seine estuary, where the infamous French river meets the English Channel. Honfleur is a port town as quaint as they come. The colourful timber houses contrast with the strong blue of the harbour water, providing picturesque views as you dine, stroll or shop.

Honfleur's port

Honfleur's beauty inspired many artists such as Monet and Boudin and it has been suggested by experts that the Impressionist movement began in Honfleur. It is said that these artists found the constantly-changing light in the quay inspiring, and it was well known amongst famous landscape artists that Honfleur was 'the most ravishing spot in the world'. Today, you can go down to the port, take a photo, and notice that the lighting will appear different the next day.

A Monet painting of Honfleur - it is easy to see why Honfleur was the artists' hub

For the art lovers wanting to see these incredible works in the flesh, look no further than the Musee Eugene Boudin. This incredible museum houses many of the Honfleur paintings completed by 19th and 20th artists such as Boudin, Monet, Dubourg and Gernez. Additionally, there are a collection of works by Boudin that were bequeathed to his birthplace in 1898.

There are a plethora of other galleries and museums that may interest tourists as well. From the Musee du Vieux Honfleur - showcasing the history of the port and domestic life there - to the Musee de la Marine, there is something for everyone.

The Vieux Bassin (old dock) of Honfleur is arguably the most picturesque part of the port town and offers the best views over the harbour. It is the social hub of the riverside town, offering a gorgeous carousel for Honfleur's youth and a variety of restaurants with dining options right on the harbour's edge. When in Honfleur, you can't look past the local seafood that tops the menus at the many incredible restaurants. We recommend feasting on fresh oysters and sipping champagne as you overlook the beautiful port.

The cobblestone streets and variety of markets and stores also make Honfleur a great stop for shopping. From seaside-themed clothes stores, to authentic souvenir shops, rest assured that you will find something to enjoy in this pedestrian-friendly town. The Honfleur Normandy Outlet (Galeries Lafeyette) is an incredible department store shopping experience, housing popular brands as well as authentic French fashion and lifestyle items that you won't find anywhere else in the world. Click here to read our recent blog about why Galeries Lafayette is one of the most luxurious shopping experiences in the world.

If department-style shopping isn't for you and you're looking for a more laid-back, local shopping experience, the Marche Tradionnel D'Honfleur is your go-to. The farmer's market offers the best of Honfleur's fresh produce, as well as cheeses, cider and other foods unique to this little French paradise.

Experience the beauty of this stunning town for yourself on our Jewels of the North tour in 2024. This tour offers a 3-day visit to this stunning region, in addition to many other beautiful northern French towns.

Maud has specially designed this itinerary to provide a unique insight to some of France's overlooked gems. Click here to see the full itinerary and learn more about the Jewels of the North tours in 2024. Places are filling fast so head over to France Travel Solutions to book your spot now!


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