Established in 1988 and dedicated to peace, the Caen Memorial is regarded as the best World War II museum in France. It also includes exhibits on other failures and triumphs of peace, such as 9/11.
- Go Historic ID
- Street Address
- Esplanade General Eisenhower B.P. 55026
- 49.197322° N, 0.383985° W
- (0)2 31 06 06 45
Description of the Caen Memorial
The Caen Memorial is a stark rectangular structure located 10 minutes from the Pegasus Bridge and 15 minutes from the D-Day beaches. It provides a thought-provoking meditation on the evils of war, the importance of learning from past failures and successes, and the difficulty but necessity of finding lasting peace.
Inside, the main exhibits include: spectacular video presentations of D-Day or Jour J (showing the events from Allied and German perspectives on a split-screen); models of bunkers, battleships and battlefields; artifacts from the French Resistance; and a tribute to the Holocaust.
A new wing added in 2002 houses exhibits on the Cold War, the fall of the Berlin Wall, the development of the atomic bomb and the attacks of September 11, 2001. The Caen Memorial was the first museum outside of the United States to display artifacts from 9/11.
The last section visitors encounter in the museum, added in 1991 and housed in an old bunker, is dedicated to the ongoing movement for peace. It includes a Gallery of Nobel Peace Prizes, celebrating such figures as Andrei Sakharov, Elie Wiesel and Desmond Tutu.
The museum also runs daily, eight-person minivan guided tours of the D-Day beaches, which begin at the museum or the Caen train station.
References & Resources
- Official Website of the Caen Memorial Official website.