Walking Tour of Caen, France
The city of Caen makes a good base of operations from which you can explore the Normandy area. It is convenient to the Normandy Beaches and offers numerous services for the traveler.
My walk begins on the Place de la Republique, a square surrounded by elegant buildings and graced with a public garden. Exit to the northwest on Rue Paul Doumer, and then turn left onto Rue de Brasand, and right on Boulevard Bertrand, into Place Saint-Etienne. Ahead is Eglise St-Etienne and the Abbaye aux Homes (Men’s Abbey), built by William the Conqueror. It once held the famous monarch’s remains.
Now leave the area by walking east on Rue Ecuyere, then turn left on Rue Arcisse de Caumont which becomes Rue Saint-Pierre, and passes St Saviour’s Church on its way to Place Saint-Pierre. Here, notice the impressive Escoville House, built by a wealthy merchant in the early 16th century.
To your left is the Chateau de Caen, William the Conqueror’s castle, originally erected in 1060 AD, just a few years prior to his conquest of England. While on the grounds, be sure to check out the Chapel of St George, one of the oldest buildings in the entire region. The Normandy Museum is also housed in the castle complex.
Exit by walking south on Avenue de la Liberte, and turn left onto Rue des Chanoines, which leads to Trinity Church and the Women’s Abbey (Abbaye aux Dames de Caen), where William’s wife, Matilda, is interred.
From the abbey, walk west on Rue Haute, then turn left on Rue Manissier, and right on Rue Basse, then left again on Rue Samuel Bochard, and then right on Rue du Marechal Leclerc, which leads to the Place du Theatre, just south of Place de la Republique, where you began your walk.