My beloved ,memorable, sentimental Honfleur!!!

So I am coming back to update/revise links on this beloved, memorable ,sentimental Honfleur of ours. We came here as many to seek the arts and the ocean breeze along its cobblestones streets and its festivals. Over the years the family took a loving liking to the town, and yes my mom and wife lies off the sea here so we come at least once a year . Let me tell you a bit more about Honfleur, Calvados , Normandy in my belle France!

There has been many ,but this is one I am never tired of writing on it. Brief, the town is historical glorious, quant , old, turn to the sea, architecture, and just great family memories.  I have been coming here for years since first encounter my Frenchie, and my parents especially my mother love it. At the end, and many nice stories there are always some sad ones, that is human life I am afraid. My mom Gladys passed away on December 27, 2007 , just after Christmas and my wedding anniversary; and was her wish to be deposit at sea her ashes here, and so I did. Lately, I have gone thru the sad times again of losing my dear loving wife Martine ,last April 30 2018 and on her last days , her wish was to be deposit here too at Honfleur. And so I did, as always with the lifeguard SNSM on August 24 2018 with the same lifesaving boat the Notre Dame. Eventually, we all will rest in peace here.


So, Honfleur is more than just a spot, a tourist spot, a town or a visit; it is more personal. One of the spots that is dear to us is up the hill or plateau of Grace or Côte de Grâce and into the quant old Notre Dame Chapel and its outdoor bells with a big Cross of Jesus Christ nearby overlooking the bay of Honfleur and across Le Havre. We come around to see the Mont Joli, or pretty mount with great, wonderful views of the area and the bridges afar Normandie and Tancarville. This is Honfleur .  On the plateau of Grace is one of the oldest sanctuaries in the region surrounded by secular trees. Located 1.5 km from the city/town center of Honfleur, the plateau de Grâce offers a panoramic view of the sea, the Seine estuary and Le Havre.

Right up the hill, sits the Chapelle Notre-Dame-de-Grâce on the limits of the village of  Équemauville, was built between 1600-1615 by the burghers and sailors of Honfleur, replacing an old Chapel that disappeared in a landslide of the cliff. This primitive Chapel was founded before the year 1023 by Richard II, Duke of Normandy, to fulfill a vow made during a storm in which he had almost perished. Since the cult of Our Lady of Grace has perpetuated.  Marble plaques and paintings perpetuate the memory of illustrious characters who came to this Chapel, such as Samuel de Champlain, Pierre Berthelot, king Louis XIII, Napoléon  Bonaparte, Saint Theresa Lisieux…etc.  Located on the heights dominating the town of Honfleur, but on the territory of Équemauville, houses ex-votos, models of boats and an organ made by the organ factor Dupont in 1990. On the outside you can see the bells of the pilgrimages. Our Lady of Grace Chapel has exceptional ex-votos. All the faithful who come to collect in the sanctuary are seized and surprised by the impressive number of plaques, models or inscriptions that testify to the general gratitude. All these ex-Votos have a story. Their presence symbolizes the success of a vow, a recommendation, a prayer.  Of course the protection of the sailors is a privileged place. But it can also be testimonials of recognition as a result of healing or the fulfillment of a happy event.


Every year, Pentecost is the traditional Marines Festival or Fête des Marins during which it is possible to admire the colorful procession of the models of boats carried by the children from the place Sainte-Catherine to the Chapel Our Lady of Grace. The Chapel and the Grace Plateau, although located on the village of Equemauville, have been owned by the city of Honfleur since the French revolution. The interior Chapel of the Transept, on the left, is dedicated to all Canadians of Norman descent, in remembrance of the departure from this point of many settlers for Canada.   The small road that leaves to the left, behind the Chapel, leads to Mont-Joli, which is also located in the village of Equemauville . Mont-Joli dominates the city and offers a beautiful panorama of the Seine Valley and the Pont de Normandie (bridge) which connects Honfleur to Le Havre. Mont Joli dominates the city and offers a beautiful view  on a clear day you can locate even  the Pont de Tancarville (bridge), located at almost 30 km away.



These are the nice stories, in addition there is the Sainte-Catherine taken for a ride , she is carried by locals into a small boat and goes out with a flotilla of fisherman’s and sailors, boats into the sea for a Mass by the Bishop. She is brought back into the Church on poles and the faithful walks the Grace plateau up hill carrying a Cross as the Way of Christ into the Our Lady of Grace Chapel (Notre Dame de Grâce) where there is another Mass carried out. Very moving scene on the Marines Festival day.


The Honfleur tourist office

The city of Honfleur on its heritage/things to see:

The Calvados dept 14 tourist office on Honfleur harbors:

The Normandy region tourist board on Honfleur

And then you do what we do /like best walk the beat! And Honfleur is wonderful but of course cannot do all in one day so we rented a nice inexpensive chain of hotels here call B&B right at the entrance of the town! in the neighboring city limits of La Rivière-Saint-Sauveur! These are good for one or two nights and on my road warrior trips used them often. webpage:


We had our lunch at a new found restaurant which we have been coming back here and nearby us in Lanester, these are the Oncle Scott American style restos which my whole gang enjoys very much. The old Miller beers and Sol as well as Baltimore crab cakes are worth the trip alone. Enjoy it ;webpage:



And for dinner we again tried a new restaurant for the night  this was the La Fregate right in La Rivière Saint-Sauveur not far from the above hotel and on the main road to the old basin of Honfleur. The marmite de la mer was delicious!!! no webpage but on the city of La Riviére Saint-Sauveur it shows on the list of restos:


In all , another memorable visit to Honfleur and there are plenty more in my blog and those pending to go when possible nowdays. Hope you enjoy the post and do visit the 2nd most visited site in all of Normandy! (for info 1st is MSM).

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: