Springtime in Normandy is simply magical. From bursting gardens to tranquil beaches to maritime harbors, this area is easily one of the most enchanting and diverse regions of France. Just a short drive or train ride from the capital, Normandy is a necessary destination to experience the variety of environments that France has to offer.
With so many activities to plan for, it is important to pack appropriately. As avid admirers of the northwestern region, we have put together an essential outfit guide to the three main attractions: garden visits, beachside lounging, and harbor promenades.
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Use these collections to pack practically and fit in with the Normand locals! Click the pink text and images to shop the look.
If you are planning a trip to Paris and want to tack on a detour to Normandy, check out our 11-day Itinerary to Paris, Normandy, and the Loire Valley.
The Garden Day
Dotted throughout the region, you would be remiss to skip out on a visit to at least one garden in Normandy. The most well-known and accessible from Paris is Claude Monet’s home and garden in Giverny, just a short one-hour train ride away.
As you will surely be doing a substantial amount of leisurely walking through natural terrain, it is important to have comfortable attire and practical shoes. Simple linen pieces like a jumpsuit and button-down shirt are breathable, easy to pack and go perfectly with Veja sneakers, a favorite brand among French locals. Pack a picnic in a stylish straw bag, tie your hair back with a floral-patterned silk tie and sport a garden hat to keep your face protected from the sun. Match the garden surroundings with a silk scarf featuring Monet’s famous waterlilies paintings, a masterpiece right in front of your eyes!
Read more about Monet’s Garden in Giverny in our May/June 2023 Edition of the magazine and check out our Gardens of Normandy 5-Day Itinerary to hit all of Normandy’s greatest “jardins.”
The Beach Day
As Normandy lines the coast of northwest France, there is no shortage of stunning beaches. In addition to the historical D-Day beaches, relaxing vacation destinations include the sandy shores of Deauville and the cliff-lined seaside of Étretat.
The classic stripes of the maritime French brand Saint James make for a perfect late spring sundress and look great with Sézane leather sandals. Accessorize with a packable straw hat and starfish earrings, as well as a light scarf for the ocean breeze. Pack a cute “Madame” beach bag with a navy swimsuit in case the weather proves warm enough to take a dip in the Atlantic!
The Harbor Day
Not only does Normandy border the Atlantic Ocean, but it also serves as the mouth of the famous Seine River. Towns like Le Havre, Honfleur, and Rouen have gorgeous riverside ports and harbors lined with boats.
Take a stroll along the water in appropriate boat shoes from Sézane that go perfect with their leather bucket bag. A classic Normand French outfit includes a maritime shirt from Saint James, linen pants, and a country beret on top, of course. If you are heading out to one of the fresh seafood restaurants on the port at night, tack on a light trench coat and accessorize with French gold jewelry that has a touch of pearl.
With a wardrobe like this, you will be perfectly ready to breathe in the floral air, soak up the springtime sun, and stroll down the port. Bon voyage!
Read Next: Packing for Paris in Spring
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