$138 USD per device. 4 programs, held weekly over 1 month. Enroll in all 4 programs or choose only the ones that interest you. Each program is 60 mins, including time to ask questions and exchange ideas. Suitable for all ages, no background required.

  • Fridays, May 28, June 4, 11, and 18 at 1:00 pm EST
  • Sundays, June 6, 13, 20, 27, at 11:00 am EST

The picturesque green landscapes and breathtaking coastlines of Normandy are rich in history and culture. What does this region have in store for you? Most visitors to France start in Paris, but this northern region is second on everyone’s list. Whether it’s food, art, or culture, there’s something here for every Francophile. Get an insider’s take from a knowledgeable guide who knows both the main sites and the back roads. Normandy is a visual delight, but it’s also a storyteller’s dream.

Your instructor, Ed Klein, used his MA in Business to work with various organizations and NGOs, before his career shift to the arts. After a decade, he decided to share his passion for art and history as an educator, and studied at both the National Conservatory of Arts and Crafts and the École du Louvre, in his hometown of Paris. As a professional guide, Ed has led hundreds of visitors to historical sites in Normandy, Paris, Versailles, and throughout France.

Get Ready for Normandy features:

An Insider’s Guide

Normandy offers an idyllic French countryside just an arm’s stretch away from Paris. With so many sites to choose from, it’s a region rich in travel experiences. Among the options in this virtual itinerary, you’ll be introduced to Etretat, the Parisian’s weekend getaway, Honfleur, the charming sailor’s town with exquisite 500-year old half-timbered houses, and the breathtaking Mont-Saint-Michel abbey. Once a destination for medieval pilgrims coming by foot from all over Europe, the majestic mirage of Mont-Saint-Michel is now the most visited French monument outside of Paris. You’ll also briefly see what Omaha Beach looks like today, over 75 years after the D-Day landing. These sites and stories will inspire your next French adventure.

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Top Art Sites

Thanks in part to Impressionists like Claude Monet, Normandy is an art lover’s destination. What attracted artists like Monet to Etretat, and then to Giverny, where he created his most iconic paintings? The region was celebrated for artistic treasures like the medieval Bayeux tapestry, long before modern tourists came for its beaches. Once a convenient seaside getaway for affluent Parisians became the go-to place for avant-garde artists. Realist Gustave Courbet and Neo-Impressionist Georges Seurat are some of the other artists who were enthralled by the natural beauty and colors of the region.  

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The Cuisine

“How can anyone govern a nation which has 246 varieties of cheese?” is the legendary, only-half joking question attributed to Charles de Gaulle. France’s diverse variety of cheeses owes much to Normandy, in fact. In this program, we’ll explore how regional cuisine speaks to both past and present. Camembert cheese is just one of Normandy’s many famous exports. We’ll explore the region’s lesser-known treasures, like cider and brandy, oysters and scallops, salt meadow lamb, as well as unusual and hearty dishes like boudin with apples, andouille de Vire, tripes à la mode de Caen. We won’t be cooking, but we’ll be ready to order from a Norman menu, or at least know what—or who—is coming to the table!

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Legends and History

Who are the heroes that make up Normandy’s storied past? A thousand years ago, William Duke of Normandy and his troops conquered England, making him the richest man in the world. The invasion impacted English language and culture forever. How did the heart of Richard the Lionheart, a King of England, end up buried in the Norman town of Rouen? The heroine Joan of Arc was only 19 years old when she was martyred there. These are all historical icons, but more recently, the Saving Private Ryan film made dramatic use of Norman history, too, with the story of the Niland brothers, two of whom lost their lives in WWII. Normandy is the backdrop to some of France’s most well-known stories about itself— in art, books, and film. We’ll unpack what’s true and what’s legend, and discover where precisely those histories are still visible today.

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