Honfleur


We are no longer in France but due to several intensive travel days I got behind so I’ll be sharing France with you a few days longer.  Honfleur is best known as a mecca for the Impressionist painters in the late 19th century because of it’s expansive landscape, the coastal light and the easy travel by train from Paris.  Even today Parisians flock to Normandy to “get away.”  For some reason this picturesque town was spared destruction during World War II and it is quintessentially cute though not in a bad way.  In fact it seems to be spared the chain stores, at least in the compact downtown (compact in that to drive the streets you have to put both mirrors in and someone has to direct walking ahead of the car).

Honfleur is still a port thought mostly it appears to be large sailboats and tour boats, with a few fishing boats mixed in.  Le Havre, the large port to the north (and quite industrial) has long eclipsed Honfleur.  This is where the Seine River meets the English Channel.  William the Conquerer received supplied from Honfleur once he had invaded England and Samuel de Champlain sailed from here in 1608 to North America, where he explored the St. Lawrence River and founded Quebec City.  But of everything, artists like Monet might be said to have launched modernism from here.

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