Art tour to Normandy by coach: 4 days, 3 nights

Normandy is the home of Impressionism and Le Havre was the setting for Monet’s famous 1872 painting – Impression, soleil levant. This tour is an excellent opportunity for teachers looking to give their groups a balanced experience of practical art activities alongside some great museum visits, architecture and inspirational landscapes.

Suggested itinerary

Day one
Depart from school by coach
Connect with channel crossing
Stop at Honfleur en route – sketching of port and old buildings such as Saint-Catherine’s Church
Arrive at accommodation
Evening sketching harbour at Courseulles-sur-Mer

Day two
Bayeux Tapestry
Bayeux Cathedral
Musée des Beaux Arts (Museum of Fine Arts) in Caen
OR sketching of the Château du Baffy and grounds

Day three
Monet’s Giverny
Full day at Mont St Michel

Day four
Depart accommodation
Stop en route at Le Havre MuMa – Museum of Modern Art, then at Étretat sketching the Aval’s cliff
Return back to the UK on coach

Tour gallery

Excursion Locator Map

Excursion Ideas

  • MuMa Museum of Modern Art - Le Havre

    Subject range: Art, Cultural

    What you’ll experience: MuMa at Le Havre is known for its late 19th and 20th century collections and has one of France’s largest collections of Impressionist art. Students can experience the work of artists including Monet, Boudin, Bonnard, Dufet, Renoir, Pissarro, Sisley, Degas and Courbet.
    Select says: The Impressionists were attracted by the unique, ever-changing light of the Le Havre estuary, and it was the summer home of Monet who stayed and worked at his aunt’s house in Sainte-Adresse.

  • Honfleur

    Subject range: MFL, Art, Cultural, Food Technology

    What you’ll experience: A town with a rich artistic and historical heritage, Honfleur has beautiful old houses, narrow paved streets, monuments, little shops, traditional restaurants, galleries, artists’ studios, a fishing harbour and a marina.
    Select says: The changing light on the Seine estuary inspired Monet, Boudin, Courbet, and many others.

  • Swimming - Aquanacre

    Subject range: MFL, Physical Education

    What you’ll experience: Aquanacre is located in Douvres-la-Délivrande, just 10 minutes from the Château du Baffy. The swimming centre has 3 pools, one outside, and a pentagliss (parallel slides).
    Select says: Swimming is always a fun activity to choose for the students and great for unwinding as an evening activity.

  • Château de Fontaine-Henry

    Subject range: MFL, Art, History

    What you’ll experience: Château de Fontaine-Henry is a family Renaissance residence handed down over the generations and has a collection of period paintings and furniture. Guided group tours are in English as well as French.
    Select says: A great location for students to bring their sketch pads and pencils. The château has distinctive high, steep roofing and sculpted exterior.

  • Bayeux Tapestry Museum

    Subject range: MFL, Art, Cultural, History

    What you’ll experience: The Bayeux Tapestry is a unique source on the 11th century beginning with Harold’s eventful journey to Normandy through to the Battle of Hastings. Visits are by audio-guide giving commentary on the scenes.
    Select says: There is a simplified audio version in English especially for children.

    *Please note this museum will be closed for renovation work from September 2025-Spring 2027.

  • Bayeux Cathedral

    Subject range: MFL, Art, Cultural, History, RS

    What you’ll experience: The cathedral of Notre-Dame in Bayeux is an impressive building with a mix of Romanesque architecture in the 11th century crypt and Gothic in the 13th-century nave. The crypt contains some beautiful murals and the stained-glass windows in the chapel are stunning.
    Select says: Read the diagram on the stairs before you descend into the crypt, as it gives some information about the images below.

  • Monet's Garden - Giverny

    Subject range: Art

    What you’ll experience: Giverney was Monet’s home from 1883 until he passed away in 1926. Monet created some of his most celebrated work at Giverny and students will have the opportunity to see his house and the beautiful ‘Water Garden’ – sketch books are essential!
    Select says: Reservations are necessary for groups of 20+. You can find out more about Monet’s Garden – Giverny here.

  • Rouen Cathedral

    Subject range: Art, Cultural, History

    What you’ll experience: Claude Monet​ painted more than thirty canvases depicting Rouen Cathedral between 1892 and 1894. The paintings in the series capture the façade of the Cathedral at different times of the day and year, reflecting changes under different lighting conditions. This intricate and flamboyant building is the tallest cathedral in France with a spire that reaches 151 metres high.
    Select says: This is a great place to bring pastels and sketch books so that students can create their own unique interpretation of the cathedral guided by the time of day, year and atmospheric conditions. Find out more about a selection of Monet’s Rouen Cathedral series here.

  • Rouen Musée des Beaux-Arts

    Subject range: Art, Cultural

    What you’ll experience: The Rouen Musée des Beaux-Arts features paintings, sculptures and drawings from the 15th century to the present day. The collection includes works by Rubens, Caravaggio, Velázquez, Poussin, Géricault, Delacroix, Corot, Gustave Moreau, Degas and Monet Modigliani, Dufy and the Duchamp brothers, amongst many more.
    Select says: Guided tours are possible – enquire for details.

  • Sketching and creating beach art at Gold Beach, Arromanches

    Subject range: Art, Cultural, History

    What you’ll experience: This is a great opportunity to discuss art and its place in commemorating history. Students could create their own sand art – see the artwork called The Fallen, the idea of Bradford sculptors Jamie Wardley and Andy Moss. You can view a time lapse of the beach art tribute created in 2013 here. Arromanches has the remains of the Mulberry harbour in its bay which also provides thought provoking sketching material.
    Select says: Check the tide tables for best day of your itinerary to visit.

  • Musée des Beaux Arts (Museum of Fine Arts) - Caen

    Subject range: Art, Cultural

    What you’ll experience: Musée des Beaux Arts in Caen houses collections with many sixteenth and seventeenth century French, Italian and Flemish works of art, along with some contemporary art. The medieval castle also hosts a sculpture park.
    Select says: The museum is located in a contemporary building in the heart of William the Conqueror’s castle.

  • Courseulles-sur-Mer

    Subject range: Art, Cultural, Language

    What you’ll experience: The beach of Courseulles-sur-Mer is renowned for being one of the most beautiful and unspoilt coastlines of France. Courseulles-sur-Mer town is small but lively with a harbour – perfect for sketching opportunities.
    Select says: Located only ten minutes’ drive from the Château du Baffy.

  • Étretat

    Subject range: Art, Cultural

    What you’ll experience: Étretat is known for its cliffs which include three natural arches and the ‘needle’. This beautiful area attracted artists including Monet, Boudin and Courbet.
    Select says: This is a great opportunity for your students to sketch the scenes that have attracted numerous artists over the years, and put their own unique interpretation on the landscape.

  • Les Braves - Omaha Memorial Sculpture

    Subject range: Art, History

    What you’ll experience: Les Braves is a war memorial created by French sculptor Anilore Banon in 2004, located on the shores of Omaha Beach in St. Laurent-sur-Mer. It was commissioned by the French government to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the D-Day Invasion. The memorial represents three elements: the wings of hope, the rise of freedom, and the wings of fraternity. The tallest of the columns stands at 30 feet.
    Select says: The sculpture was initially intended as a temporary art piece but due to wide public interest it remains standing. The sculpture has been described as a blend of art and nature – this visit is an opportunity to sketch and for students to design their own memorial sculptural art work.

Art trip to Normandy by coach: 4 days, 3 nights Accommodation

Château du Baffy

Our rating:

Location: Colombiers-sur-Seulles

Capacity: 110

The Château is only 6 kilometres from the picturesque seaside town of Courselles-sur-Mer with its yacht harbour and sandy beaches, and is also on the doorstep of Bayeux and the World War II landing beaches. It's the perfect base for groups to enjoy the wealth of excursions and educational experiences on offer in this historical area.

Rooms: Rooms: The Château sleeps up to 110 persons in 2-5 bedded rooms, all with en-suite bathrooms.

Facilities: Facilities: There are two restaurants, a teachers' lounge, a sun-terrace, and a meeting room. Outside there are lawned gardens and a tennis court, as well as a barbeque area, plus a new 100 metre squared sports hall! Select says: The Château du Baffy has a main building and the adjacent Villa Mathilde - both buildings accommodate a full coach capacity, so groups can enjoy sole-occupancy of their building. Our Château has been a highly popular choice for dozens of UK schools in the past fifteen years and will now be operated by our own team, including our renowned French chef Thierry! One of our teachers says, “Beautiful setting – a great place to take school groups. Plenty of outdoor space to run around and very French feeling dining room. Ideal location to explore this wonderful area.”

UNCMT Tailleville

Our rating:

Location: Tailleville

Capacity: 50

Tailleville is a traditional rural hamlet just 3km from Courseulles and 12km from Arromanches. The UNCMT is set in its own grounds and is a great accommodation for school groups, with classrooms available if required as well as plenty of enclosed outside space.

Rooms: Rooms: Mostly en-suite rooms, some shared facilities.

Facilities: Facilities: Restaurant, meeting rooms, table tennis, volleyball.

CPCV Normandie

Our rating:

Location: Houlgate

Capacity: 94

Located in its own grounds in the attractive seaside resort of Houlgate, just 50m from the seafront and beach, also within easy walking distance of the town centre.

Rooms: Rooms: All rooms have en-suite facilities.

Facilities: Facilities: Restaurant, TV room, lounge area, table tennis.

Hotel le Canada

Our rating:

Location: Ouistreham

Capacity: 55

Located in Ouistreham 200m from Sword Beach, one of the famous sites of the Second World War where British troops landed. The town centre is only 500m away.

Rooms: Rooms: All rooms have en-suite facilities.

Facilities: Facilities: Breakfast room, free Wi-Fi. Select says: Groups can get packed lunches delivered and take evening meals at a local restaurant close by.

Le Home du Cotentin

Our rating:

Location: Agon-Coutainville

Capacity: 170

This property occupies an ideal position just 50m from the seafront in Agon-Coutainville. Le Home du Contentin is located between Mont-Saint-Michel and the landing sites from June 1944, in front of the islands of Jersey and Guernsey.

Rooms: Rooms: All rooms have en-suite facilities.

Facilities: Facilities: 2 dining rooms, meeting / classrooms, free Wi-Fi, games room.