Make the most of your stay in Normandy at the 3-star Camping Reine Mathilde, our campsite in Calvados, to visit Bayeux, the capital of the Bessin region. This medieval Norman town is famous the world over for its tapestry, a UNESCO World Heritage site, but that's not all. Let's find out!
The Bayeux Tapestry
Classified as a Memory of the World by UNESCO, this magnificent woollen embroidery tells the story of William the Conqueror's conquest of England. Commissioned at the end of the 11th century by Bishop Odon, William's brother, this almost thousand-year-old masterpiece unfolds in a single piece 70 m long and 50 cm high. It once adorned Bayeux cathedral. It is now on display in the former Major Seminary of Bayeux.
Notre Dame de Bayeux Cathedral
A jewel of Norman medieval architecture, Notre Dame de Bayeux cathedral was consecrated on 14 July 1077 by Bishop Odon de Conteville. Standing in the centre of Bayeux, this gigantic and impressive "cathedral of William" combines the Early Gothic, Radiant Gothic and Flamboyant Gothic styles. The visit includes access to the Chapter and Treasury rooms and a chance to admire the new contemporary stained-glass windows.
The cathedral is also the starting point for guided tours of the old town of Bayeux: the medieval town walls, the episcopal palace, timber-framed houses, town houses, manor houses with towers, as well as the meat market, the fish market, the district and the tanners' bridge.
The Battle of Normandy Memorial Museum
The gateway to the D-Day landing beaches! Located right next to the British military cemetery, the Battle of Normandy Memorial Museum retraces the military operations that took place in Normandy between 7 June and 29 August 1944. Find out more about the Battle of Normandy.
Bayeux British Cemetery
Just a few minutes from the D-Day beaches, Bayeux British War Cemetery contains the war graves of 4,000 Commonwealth soldiers. On the pediment of the Memorial to the memory of the combatants, a phrase in Latin reminds us that in 1944 the British came to liberate the land of William the Conqueror.
The Baron Gérard Museum
Housed in the former palace of the bishops of Bayeux (11th-18th centuries), the MAHB-Musée d'art et d'histoire Baron Gérard contains some 600 works of art, including 250 paintings and prints (by François Boucher, Gustave Caillebotte, Eugène Boudin, Kees Van Dongen, etc.), as well as collections of Bayeux porcelain and lace and almost a thousand archaeological and ethnographic objects.
The Botanical Garden
Considered one of the finest 19th-century landscaped parks in Normandy, the Bayeux Botanical Gardens were created in 1859 by the Bühler brothers, famous landscape gardeners from Alsace. Now a listed historic monument, the park is famous for its weeping beech, which has been a natural monument since 1932 and was awarded the "Remarkable Tree of France" label in 2001.
The medieval festivals of Bayeux
During your stay at a campsite in Bayeux, don't miss the Bayeux medieval festivals held every year in July. On the programme: historical re-enactments, street shows, medieval games, music and dance.
Photo credit: Stéphane Maurice / Calvados Attractivité