Etretat Cliffs picture1 of 3
Etretat Cliffs2 of 3
glcheng/Getty Images

Key Info

Etretat

Price & Hours

Free

Details

Natural Wonders, Sightseeing, Free Type
1 to 2 hours Time to Spend
4.0

scorecard

  • 5.0Value
  • 2.5Facilities
  • 4.0Atmosphere

These stunning white chalk cliffs have drawn people, especially artists, such as Claude Monet and Guy de Maupassant, to the area for eons. The cliffs are often compared to the famous White Cliffs of Dover. Visitors can hike along the top of cliffs, as well as on the beach to check out the striking sight.

Recent visitors were astonished at the beauty of the cliffs and recommended visiting at sunrise and sunset for spectacular photo ops. Others suggested hiking to the top of the cliffs for unforgettable views. Reviewers also reported touring the town of Étretat.

Étretat is located about 2 1/2 hours northwest of Paris and about an north of Honfleur. The cliffs are free to access. Most visitors reached the area via car; paid parking is available near the cliffs, though visitors said it's difficult to come by in the busy summer season unless you arrive in the morning.

See all Hotels in Normandy »

More Best Things To Do in Normandy

D-Day Beaches1 of 17
Mont Saint-Michel Abbey (Abbaye du Mont-Saint-Michel)2 of 17
Type
Time to Spend
#1 D-Day Beaches

World War II's successful Operation Overlord took place on the coast of France. Although there were heavy Allied casualties, this invasion turned the tide in the war and helped lead to the fall of Nazi Germany. Today this piece of coastline, which includes Sword, Juno, Gold, Omaha and Utah beaches, is collectively known as the D-Day Beaches.

Visitors can tour the approximately 50-mile stretch of sand and pop by a number of museums, memorials and cemeteries that are spread out alongside the coastline either with a tour or on their own. If you're driving yourself, start in the town of Arromanches, which hosts two museums that help provide context for the battle sites. The American Cemetery in Colleville-sur-Mer and the Pointe-du-Hoc bomb craters are also especially moving. If you'd rather let someone else do the driving, recent visitors recommend going with a tour guide to fully appreciate the area's historic importance and receive a comprehensive overview. If you're visiting in June, you'll likely come across several ceremonies and reenactment groups commemorating the anniversary. Thanks to Normandy's unpredictable weather, you'll want to dress in layers (no matter the time of your visit) and bring rain gear, according to past visitors.

Read more
fhm/Getty Images
See full list of Best Things To Do in Normandy »

Explore More of Normandy

If you make a purchase from our site, we may earn a commission. This does not affect the quality or independence of our editorial content.

Recommended

The 50 Most Beautiful Places in the World

Let these gorgeous destinations inspire you to travel more.

Holly JohnsonJanuary 16, 2020

50 Amazing Honeymoon Ideas

From relaxing weekend getaways to epic adventures, these honeymoon trips will help couples create memories to last a lifetime.

Kyle McCarthyJanuary 8, 2020

The Cheapest Days to Fly: A Guide to the Best (and Worst) Times to Travel

Use these tips and tricks to get the best deal on your next flight.

Lyn MettlerDecember 23, 2019

30 Top Florida Weekend Getaways

Spend sun-filled days exploring Florida's beautiful beaches, cities, parks and small towns.

Gwen PratesiDecember 9, 2019

The Best Travel Backpacks for 2020

U.S. News rated the best travel backpacks using recommendations from experts and consumers.

Lyn MettlerNovember 25, 2019

30 Top Wellness Retreats

Rejuvenate your mind, body and spirit at one of these relaxation-focused properties.

Kyle McCarthyNovember 21, 2019

30 Fun All-Inclusive Family Vacations

Book one of these all-inclusive trips that cover food, accommodations and activities galore.

Holly JohnsonNovember 14, 2019

5 Ways Cruise Lines Are Becoming More Environmentally Friendly

Industry considers impact as it looks to the future.

Gwen PratesiNovember 12, 2019

11 Unique and Quirky Cruise Destinations

Venture off the beaten path for an authentic cruising experience.

Christine SmithNovember 12, 2019

The 2020 Best Cruise Lines for Families

Gather up the gang and head out to sea with one of these six kid-friendly cruise lines.

Nicola WoodNovember 12, 2019