Excursion Details:
  • Honfleur is a commune in the Calvados department in northwestern France. It is located on the southern bank of the estuary of the Seine across from le Havre and very close to the exit of the Pont de Normandie. Its inhabitants are called Honfleurais.
  • It is especially known for its old port, characterized by its houses with slate-covered frontages, painted many times by artists, including in particular Gustave Courbet, Eugène Boudin, Claude Monet and Johan Jongkind, forming the école de Honfleur (Honfleur school) which contributed to the appearance of the Impressionist movement.
  • The Sainte-Catherine church, which has a bell tower separate from the principal building, is the largest church made out of wood in France.
  • In the 16th and 17th centuries, Honfleur was one of France’s most important ports for commerce and exploration. Some of the earliest French expeditions to Brazil and Newfoundland began here, and in 1608, Samuel de Champlain set sail from Honfleur to found Québec City.
  • Long a favourite with painters such as Monet, is Normandy’s most charming port town. Though the centre can be overrun with visitors on warm weekends and in summer, it’s hard not to love the rugged maritime charm of the Vieux Bassin (Old Harbour), which evokes maritime Normandy of centuries past.
  • Honfleur is a small town with all the charms of a Normandy village with its slate-fronted houses, old harbour, its funny, hull-shaped church, and its flower-adorned roads.
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