art, landscape, nature, photography, seasons, travel, world

I’m back …

20150730_102658-610_1965-e_wfrom the sea. 🙂 Where from else? 🙂

I did it again! What? I re-visited Étretat, Normandy, France. In April 2012 I was here with some friends. We visited many parts of the Normandy. You can find more about that trip here in my blog.

Étretat is a small town, not far away from Le Havre. It has only 1440 citizens. Étretat is best known for its impressive cliffs, including three natural arches and the rock needle. The cliffs consist of chalk and flint-stones. Two of the three famous arches are seen from the town, the Porte d’Aval (left of the beach, with the needle), and the Porte d’Amont (right from the beach). The Manneporte (left of Porte d’Aval) is the third and the biggest one. But, it can’t be seen from the town (but in my photos). The coast is called Alabaster Coast, because of its color. The beaches consist of round  pebbles, mostly flint-stones. The flint-stones are embedded in the chalk and fall into the ocean, when rain and storm dissolve the chalk. The constant movement in the ocean than grinds the stones to pebbles. Chalk is a quite soft kind of rock and very sensitive for water. Thus, chalk coasts have to be preserved from needless stress. Other famous chalk coast in Europe among others are in South-England around Dover and the German island Rügen in the Baltic Sea.  The chalk was generated during the Cretaceous period at the bottom of a lake. The origin of the embedded flint-stones is not completely clarified and resolved.

This time, we’ve had a vacation-house in the old town of Étretat, instead of outside on top of the cliffs. A well renovated old fisherman’s house about 100m from the ocean, and less half the way as the bird flies. When we arrived, we were greeted by a wonderful warm, sunny day. Unfortunately the next days were overcasted and sometimes rainy. But, we were outside despite the weather. In 2012 I was quite disappointed about the waves. I expected to see big waves, because we’re here at the Atlantic ocean. But, the waves were smaller than those at the North-Sea or even the Baltic Sea. This time we were able to see impressive waves, dramatic sunsets and of course the really awesome cliffs at both sides of the beach.

Because of the location of our vacation home, inside the old-town of Étretat, we didn’t need our car very often. Instead, we only used it once for a trip to Giverny. That’s the home and garden from the french impressionistic painter Claude Monet (1840 – 1926). All the other time we left the car in the parking ground. When we were visiting Giverny, the weather changed and we got sunny days again for the rest of our stay. Although the town and the beach are so small and you could assume to have seen everything in only a few hours. There is much more to discover and enjoy.

Although, this was more a family vacation than a photo trip, I certainly took my camera with me. I love to see the different light situations during the day or from day-to-day. Also, the tide changes the ambience. And, so you can get many different photos although you stayed in only one place. Every evening I developed a few photos. Thus, you can have a small overview right now in the gallery below.

Take care!

(I don’t know, why the slideshow needs such a long time to load – sorry for that)

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29 thoughts on “I’m back …”

  1. Very nice shots !
    But, according to me, the Channel is not really the Atlantic Ocean, where the waves are indeed bigger. 😉

    1. that’s definitely true, filimages. But, compared to the North Sea or the Baltic Sea I expected a little bit more. I know, the highest waves in Europa are at the west coast of Portugal at Nazaré, according to the specific shape of the sea ground.
      thanks for your comment and the compliments 🙂

  2. Thanks for revisiting for me too. I was there a couple of years ago We went with someone that didn’t like to explore much so only saw one view from the town and walked up to the church on the hill. Now I can see what I missed and it was a lot! Now I wish I could go back after seeing your lovely photos. One in particular, for no reason, I found really striking out of all the wonderful photos. It was one looking back at the cliff with the reflection in the water. They were all great and Monet’s garden has never looked so lovely and without a single head or jacket of one of the hoards of visitors! 🙂

    1. Thank you so much, Karen.
      Yes, it was kind of difficult to get images inside the garden without any other visitor. Yeah, there were lots of them. But, we were there in the mid of the summer vacation season. So, this was expected – unfortunately. But, we’ve chosen a mid-week day: Wednesday. That, in hope to find less visitors than on a weekend day. When we arrived at about 12:30 five travel busses full of tourists were coming straight from the garden. But, the parking lots were still full and a quite long queue stood in front of the entrance. I bought our tickets in advance, so we were able to enter the garden at another entrance without a queue.
      At my first stay at Étretat I also was only at the main beach. We were there at sunrise. Our vacation home was 4 or 5 km north of the little church and we made a long hike along the cliffs in direction to Yport. But, we also missed the more interesting side. 😦
      But, now, I came back to see the remaining parts. A gorgeous experience. Being a tiny man of only a few decades standing beside such a huge (around 75m hight) and millennia old cliffs. And so different kinds of weather brought us so different kind of photos!
      I’m glad, you like them and I’m happy to be a reminder to your own trip.

    1. It is, Klaudia, it is! It’s tiny and you only need a few hours for the town. But, you can hike for days along the cliffs in both directions: North heading to Le Tréport via Fécamp and Dieppe or South to Le Havre.

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