Caen attracts visitors from all over the world interested in exploring its Romanesque abbeys, 11th-century château and the Caen Memorial, a monument for Peace. Its commercial centre and attractive residential areas make it a great place to live.
Built around 1060 by William the Conqueror as a residential palace, the ducal castle is one of the largest fortified enclosures in Europe. Transformed from princely residence to fortress to barracks, the Château de Caen has now become a cultural crossroads. Numerous Medieval monuments (Exchequery of the Dukes of Normandy, Saint George's Church, the Porte des Champs) stand alongside the Fine Arts and Normandy Museums. The recently restored northern rampart is surmounted by a belvedere and accessible by lift to offer spectacular views over the town and the castle.
Free admission all year round Guided tours in July and August
The monastic buildings are now home to Caen's Town Hall. Built in 1066 under the reign of William the Conqueror, they were later rebuilt in the 18th century. The abbey church of St Etienne, a jewel of Romanesque and Gothic architecture, houses the tomb of William the Conqueror. You are free to visit it anytime, except during services.
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