Caen Castle (Château de Caen)
Within the 13.5-acre (5.5-hectare) compound is a garden with plants cultivated in the Middle Ages and top city attractions such as the Museum of Fine Arts (Musée des Beaux-Arts), Museum of Normandy (Musée de Normandie), and Saint George's church. Take a walk around the moat, which has been filled in, and climb to the top of the ramparts for panoramic views of Caen. Discover the castle as part of a full-day tour that includes the most impressive sites in Normandy. Follow in the footsteps of Joan of Arc and Rollo in historic Rouen; visit Bayeux Cathedral to admire the UNESCO–listed Bayeux Tapestry and the Tree of Liberty planted during the French Revolution; and other essential sites in Caen such as the Abbaye aux Hommes and Abbaye aux Femmes in Caen.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Caen Castle is an ideal spot for history and art lovers and for families with kids.
- The castle is wheelchair accessible.
- No entry free is required.
- Don't miss looking down onto the current excavations from the top of the rampart walls.
How to Get There
Caen Castle (Château de Caen) is located on Le Château in the historic center of Caen. Take bus line A or B to Quatrans or Bellivet stops, or tram line T1 or T3 to the Château-Quatrans stop. If you are driving, there is parking for a fee at the foot of the castle. Parking reserved for people with reduced mobility is by the entrance facing the University. A train ride from Paris takes about 2 hours.
When to Get There
The castle is open every day to visitors, as locals use it as a shortcut between neighborhoods. Museums are open every day except Tuesdays in January through May and from November through December. Peak season for Caen, as well as the entire region of Normandy, is during the summer months. June especially sees many travelers who come to commemorate the anniversary of the D-Day landings.
Museum of Fine Arts (Musée des Beaux-Arts) One of two major museums in the castle, the Musée des Beaux-Arts has one of the finest art collections in France. Spanning five centuries, the artworks show a remarkable range including an array of European painters starting in the 16th century, with its collection of 16th- and 17th-century European painters as the crown jewel. Outside is an impressive sculpture park with works by Rodin and Bourdelle, among others.