Probably one of the
better known areas of France and certainly one of the most popular.
It is so easy to reach from the UK. Its varied and contrasting landscape
offers an interesting and exciting holiday for people of all ages
and it has been attracting tourists and travellers for centuries.
Ticheville is situated in the Pays d'Auge area of Normandy in the
department of Orne, a lush and unspoilt, traditionally farmed area
of rolling orchards, woods and pasture land rich in wildlife and
amazing wild flowers including many rare orchid species in spring
and summer. (Daniel is very proud of discovering a military orchid
in a field near us, first time it has been recorded in Normandy
for 20 years!). Beautiful villages and towns
adorn the landscape. A perfect place for walking or cycling (we
have 2 bikes available for guests) down secluded paths and bridleways
or quiet leafy lanes.
For a holiday full of days out,
you will find yourself perfectly situated here at La Maison du Vert
for reaching all of Normandy.
If it's sun, sea and sand you are after, a
trip to Trouville and Deauville will take you to the more popular
seaside resorts with beautiful beaches, stylish boutiques and trendy
In addition to 'Mont Saint Michel' there are many chateaux, churches,
cathedrals and monasteries which make up an impressive architectural
heritage, while reminders of Normandy's important role in past wars
can be found in almost every town you choose to visit during your
For those hoping just to relax and
escape the rush of modern life, the Pays d'Auge is a paradise of
peace it will remind you of England in days gone by. La Maison du
Vert is the perfect place to wind down, soaking in the countryside.
Come and lounge in our beautiful gardens with a pot of tea (or glass
of wine!) and a good book.
Every year in spring the local tourist office organises a special
weekend, click on the image for more information.
Châteaux There are so many beautiful Chateaux in
this area of Normandy, you are really spoilt for choice. Below is
a simple list of the ones really worth going out of your way for,
but it depends on what you are impressed by as to which you choose
to go to! Some charge a small fee upon entry, others are free. Leaflets
available in the guest lounge.
Château Vendeuvre (photo
Spectacular gardens with 'water surprises'. You can enter the chateau
and look at how it would have been furnished once upon a time .
Chateau de sassy (photo above left)
An eighteenth century chateau with a French Arts and Crafts garden
designed by Achille Duchene, in the 1920s, with topiary, hedges
and a parterre de broderie.
Chateau Beaumesnil (photo above right)
Surrounded by 120 acres of park and french formal gardens. Also
houses a unique collection of ancient bookbindings.
Le Château de Carrouges
14th-17thc Castle with gardens and furnished interiors.website
Chateau de Canon
Attractive Chateau with Beautiful walled gardens full of colour.
The castle now lies in ruins beside the Orne river. However, its
park and gardens, extending for about 4km along the river, offer
the prospect of many delightful walks.
Days Out With Children ...and
grown ups who like fun!
A good place to start with your children is at the bottom of our
garden with the chickensand other animals! If you'd like to help
us feed them then just tell us and we'll be really happy to show
you how to give them their Breakfast, after you have enjoyed yours
of course! After that, the list of places below should give you
a good idea of where to head for FestyLand A great theme park with a
pirate, viking theme. Fun and educational, highly recomended by
all guests who have been there. About 1hr15 away. Website
La Ferme Nature
Just 20 minutes away, this rescue farm offers 70 species of
animals living in their natural habitats and teaches you how
to understand, and thereby better protect, Nature. Includes
a bird observatory, a bee house, a hatchery and loads more!
Very popular with children
Leaflets in the Guests' Lounge website
at Honfleur, a beautiful tropical butterfly house. See the opening
of chrysalises and maybe a pair of those fluttering wings will settle
on your shoulder
at Lisieux, on 'Rue Joseph-Guillonneau', open every day. This is
a fantastic swimming pool with a 54m long toboggan, jacuzzis and
Le Zoo de Cerzawebsite
A conservation Zoo. All the animals are in huge enclosures and extremely
well cared for. 10km North of Lisieux, at
Hermival-Les-Vaux, you will find this zoo offering safaris to see
lions, tigers, rhinos and apes every day from 10.00 o'clock. There
are huge picnic areas, and a mini train to take you round the whole
circuit, with commentary!
Jardin de Plantes
at Caen, has a lovely play area for all ages with beautiful and
hot houses, all free of charge!
Gardens of water surprises
at the Chateau de Vendeuve.
Gardens of illusions
at the Chateau Cannon
Haras du Pin
The largest stud in France, the whole family should enjoy a trip
here. Daily displays plus films.Tours of the Chateaux, there is
nice parkland for a family picnic! Haras du Pin website
this is not an exhaustive list of days out with children available!
Maybe your children would like some of the ideas we have listed
for adults, such as visiting chateaux, gardens or of course, the
beach! Have a browse through the leaflets in the Guests' Lounge
for more ideas, too.
There are so many beautiful and inspirational gardens in Normandy.
We have a colourful map available, please ask.
Battle of Normandy
Not only were the consequences of D-Day and
the Battle of Normandy enormous but so too was the size and complexity
of the Operation. The first hour of the Invasion alone saw 350,000
men and 20,000 vehicles come ashore and even
today, the Normandy soil is the final resting place for almost 20,000
young soldiers who never returned after that fateful day.
In 1994 as part of the plans for
the 50th anniversary Commemorations it was decided that the sacrifices
made in Normandy during World War 2 should never be forgotten. Today
there are some wonderful museums and different itineraries for the
tourist to follow in order to discover much more about the unfolding
of this battle, upon which the outcome of the Second World War depended.
In the Guest Lounge [and any tourist office you visit] you will
find excellent leaflets about the areas in which battles took place,
and the role that battle held in relation to the final victory.
The leaflet details routes to take in order to pass through the
most sites and places of interest.
The landing at Utah beach, which many of us will have heard of through
'Saving Private Ryan' took place around Sainte-Marie-du-Mont, just
East of Sainte Mere Eglise on the map. Closer by we have the Musée
Leclerc in Alençon, the Musée 'Juin 44' in L'Aigle
and Le mémorial- Un Musée pour la Paix, in Caen.
Just 10 minutes from here is the excellent museum, the Montormel
memorial. Perched at the top of the valley where the battle of Normandy
ended. There are films and exhibitions, very moving.
We also recommend a visit to Arromanches where there is an excellent
museum and at the top of the cliffs there is a 360 degree cinema
that shows a short film that will help to illustrate Normandy during
the war. The Pegasus and Arromaches memorial website
Towns and Cities
There are just so many places to see, this area is just so full
of interesting towns with lots of character.
Here is a selection of places people most often visit.
A must see, a favourite with all our guests, 1hrs drive from
here, Honfleur is an old fishing port that is like a living museum.
The tall houses surrounding the port are just amazing. Lots of lovely
cafés and restaurants line the streets along with numerous
antique and art galleries. Great for people watching. There are
also beautiful public gardens and a long stretch of sandy beach.
A tiny village famous for it's delicious cheese. The village has
2 main attractions, the President farm museum which will take you
through the history of the cheese and it's inventor Marie Harel.
A very professional museum full of interest and an excellent website
The other Museum is the House of Camembert opened in 1992. From
the outside it resembles an open Camembert cheesebox. In season,
it is used for exhibitions. You can have a nice tasting session
here. Camembert tourist office Website
Just 10 min drive away.
If you don't eat cheese made with animal derived rennet then Camembert
currently is not suitable for you. Camembert sold in the UK and
other countries may be suitable, check the label.
Orbec A lovely little bustling town 2o
mins drive away. The town has lots of lovely architecture and the
main street is flanked both sides by quaint littel shops and the
usual numerous bakeries and cafés! It has a nice little character
and we often make time to have a coffee here. Orbec tourist office website
You can go to Orbec and then on a further 10 minutes to Bernay below.
Bernay(photo left) Has beautiful
half timbered houses, antique shops, cheese shops and cafés.
It eascaped the WW2 bombings and is beautifully preserved. You can
take a walking tour around the town with a map from the tourist
ofice taking in all the historic sites. 30 mins away. Bernay tourist
Good market which lines the main streets on Saturdays.
The Historical capital city of Normandy,
on the River Seine, and currently the capital of the Haute-Normandie
(Upper Normandy) région. Once one of the largest and most
prosperous cities of medieval Europe. Rouen is where Joan of Arc
was burnt at the stake in 1431.
The stunning Notre Dame cathedral is worth a visit, there are also
The building in Rouen are magnificent and the cobbled streets are
a delight. Lots of good antique shops and restaurants too.
Rouen tourist office website
Deauville and Trouville
The coastline of Normandy leaves
you spoilt for choice for beaches. Deauville and Trouville are right
next to each other, both worth visiting for their long stretches
of sand, Deauville is the Cannes of the north, with it's yearly
film festival. The casino is an elegant building and has restaurants
a night club and a cinema. The town is full of designer boutiques,
antiques and homewear shops. It has an expensive feel. There are
tubs and hanging baskets flowers everywhere. The Deauville tourist
Trouville has an excellent market along the quay on wednesdays and
sundays. There is open air and indoor swimming pool and also 'Babyparc'
for young children. Trouville tourist office website
Monets Garden at Giverny
A beautiful place to visit, Giverny
is a delightful little town but Monets garden is of course the main
attraction. One of the most visited places in the whole of France,
unfortunately that means you won't have it to yourself! It is worth
a visit though but be prepared to queue. The Musée de Art
Américaine gardens opposite are also worth a look. (and they
are free) they also have a nice restaurant Monets Garden website.
The drive will take you 1¾ hours
or 2¼ hours scenic route avoiding busy roads.
The coast is full of lovely beaches,
Villers sur mer is a nice seaside town with a good sheltered beach,
lots of shells to keep the kids amused.
If you have a wi-fi laptop with
you the you can surf for free at Villers-sur-mer.
Just go to the tourist office with proof of ID and they will get
1hr drive from La Maison du Vert.
The town of Bayeux is of course famous
for the Bayeaux Tapestry a 70-m long piece of embroidery that graphically
tells the story of the 1066 Battle of Hastings. A very popular place
to visit, lots of our guests have said they found it was way more
interesting than they expected. The town is lovely, filled with
beautiful half timbered buildings that escaped the bombings of WW2.
It is 1½ hours drive from here.
UNESCO classed the Mont Saint-Michel as a world heritage site in
1979 and this mecca of tourism welcomes more than three million
visitors a year. The beautiful old lanes are full of little shops
and restaurants but this only adds to it's attraction. The buildings
are amazing and the views are breathtaking. It has an interesting
history which you read about on the official Mont Saint-Michel website.
The drive will take you about 2½ hours, a lovely day trip,
there are some lovely routes you can take through the countryside.
The Birthplace of William the Conqueror.
The Castle is perched high above the town with great views of Falaise
and it's surroundings.
The recent renovations have been made in an interesting and modern
You will get a head set to guide you around and tell you the castles
history. Definitely worth the visit. 40 minutes drive form La Maison
Just 5 minutes away by car, you will
find the small local town of Vimoutiers. Not only does it have everything
you might expect from a typical French town, such as bakeries, newsagents,
post office, chocolate shops, gift shops and more, there are some
lovely bars that look out over the main square, where you can bask
in the sunshine and have a refreshing drink whilst you enjoy the
relaxed French lifestyle.
The tourist office in Vimoutiers can provide
lots of useful information such as opening times and entrance fees
for special places you want to visit. It is situated to the left
Hotel de Ville not far from the official Camembert Museum, where
you can find out all about the history of this much-loved cheese.
The Markets in Normandy are always bursting
with fresh local produce. You will also find stalls selling gifts,
clothes, jewelry, arts and crafts, watches, fabrics, housewares,
in fact just about everything!
Saint-Pierre-Sur-Dives a large and very French market in the morning. Vimoutiers has a much smaller but still interesting market on Monday
afternoons, beginning at about half past 2.
L'Aigle. The third biggest market in France, this sells all sorts!
Alençon, Argentan, Le Sap, Thury Harcourt.
Argentan, Alençon, During the summer and Easter only there
is a traditional market at Cambremer on Sundays.
The markets at Trouville and Deauville operate
alternately every day of the week. In May,
the market at Orbec is a flower market.
This is just a guide, please check with the tourist office as market
days sometimes change.
Walking and Cycling
of Ticheville was taken with a zoom lens from the other side of
the valley, part of a beautiful circular walk of either 2 or 4 hours
that takes you through woodlands, orchards and alongside the river
Touques. Click here to see photos of this walk.
The local countryside is so attractive and walking or rambling is
probably the more stimulating and refreshing of ways to discover
it all. For some excellent local walks ask us for our informative
guides and maps which can give an idea on the difficulty or length
of the walk. As you can see we are situated in the middle of a beautiful
green valley; Ramblers take note!
We really don't think that you need to get in your car and go further
afield, as we find there is so much beauty to see around here that
it is a shame to miss out on it.
The locals have reputations for being hearty eaters who appreciate
good cooking. Just about every town you visit will have its specialties,
but unfortunately for us veggies most of these consist of meat and
fish! Even the local cheeses are made using animal rennet [an enzyme
from the stomach of calves. So although a trip to the local cheese
farm is very interesting and a visit to Camembert and its museum
a good day out, be warned if you are a strict vegetarian; their
produce is not suitable for you as it uses animal derived rennet.
Please note all the cheese we serve is suitable for vegetarians.
We can give you a list of vegetarian cheeses you can buy in the
supermarkets (made using vegetarian rennet).
Otherwise, we think the solution to the problem of so many meat-based
specialties is simple- sample the local pastries, sweets and drinks!
The traditional desserts and pastries are
dominated by the abundance of apples and pears in Normandy. At just
about all the markets and bakeries you will find a selection of
excellent, subtle and often unusual jams and jellies [confitures].
Vimoutiers has a selection of excellent bakeries. We'd recommend
their Tarte au Citron and, if you are able to find one, a Pavé,
although these are more often available in Gacé. From Caen
and Putanges you can buy Calvados-flavoured cream chocolates; from
Isigny there are caramels (called chiques or balivernes) while from
Bayeux, Caen and Falaise you should try the famous boiled sweets-
Berlingots. And don't forget Rouen's delicious sugar apples!
France, of course, is internationally renowned for its wine and
a good meal here always calls for a bottle of excellent French wine.
We offer a range of organic, vegetarian wines on our wine list.
Normandy however is unusual in that it doesn't have a lot of its
own vineyards, so most of the traditional drinks are apple-based.
Also known as Calva, this dates back from the 16th Century. It is
a cider brandy, distilled twice and matured in oak casks for 6-10
years. It is a distinguished after-dinner drink and it is claimed
to help digestion. The locals traditionally take a Trou Normande-
a calvados sorbet- between courses to revive flagging appetites.
We recommend Calvados as a fine after-dinner tipple to complement
This is made from 2 parts apple juice for every 1 part of Calvados,
and is aged for 18 months in oak casks. It is served locally as
an aperitif, or sometimes with dried apples in the afternoon or
as the perfect accompaniment to apple pie.
Calvados Cream Liqueur
Very similar to Baileys, it has the softness and sweetness of cream,
with the nobility and flavour of a grand Calvados from Normandy
[that's what the label says, and it truly is delicious!]. Probably
one to have as an after-dinner treat than an aperitif.
Cider has been made locally in Normandy since the middle ages.
The local area is full of traditional farmhouses offering
cider produced using age-old methods. Most bottles you'll
find in supermarkets are made in industrial factories. We
purchase all of our Cidre (Apple cider) and Poiré (pear
cider, see below) from an organic farm 5 minutes from here
just outside of Vimoutiers. The owners, Monsieur and Madame
Schreiber, are always delighted to offer tasters and show
you around. They also make delicious Pommeau and Apple juice.
There are leaflets, with a small map on them, available in
the Guests' Lounge.
Pear Cider (Poiré)
Poiré is made using the same process as cider, but using
pears [other ciders use apples]. Its up to you which you choose!
Again, all of our pear cider is organic.
If you fancy an aperitif why not ask us for the traditional Normandy
aperitif: Kir Normande. This is ice-cold apple or pear cider served
with a dash of either crème de mûre [blackberry liqueur]
or crème de cassis [blackcurrant liqueur]. Delicious!
The beautiful 'Le Grand Village'
walk. A circular walk from our hotel of either 2 or 4 hours that
takes in beautiful scenery typical of our area, the winding river
touques, rare wild orchids, normandy cows, traditional half timbered
houses and cider apple trees. Take one of our picnics and enjoy
your day! Thank you to Brittan Osborn for some of these lovely photos.