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Les Andelys - home to Richard the Lionheart's castle

Les Andelys is a town that is located on a bend in the River Seine as it makes its way through the Upper Normandy department of the Eure. It is home to a ruined but still imposing castle, built for none other than Richard the Lionheart during his tenure as Duke of Normandy. Below the castle, the town is also full of interest and charm, with a beautiful setting and lying in an enviable location between the ferry ports of Normandy and the capital of Paris.

Château Gaillard

Les Andelys has many claims to historical importance, and the most notable is, of course, Château Gaillard. This imposing ruin stands above the town, its massive walls testimony to the desire of Richard the Lionheart for a strong fortress, his "dream home" in Normandy, as it would be called today! The castle is classified as an historical monument and is a real "must see". It is open to the public on most days during the summer season (ie; March to November).

Other sights to see in Les Andelys

Other important sights to see in Les Andelys include the churches of Notre Dame and Saint Sauveur; the "miraculous spring of Saint Clotilde", said to have curative properties and to bring about miracles; the Hospice of Saint Jacques; the Mill on the Gambon; and the house with external timbers and a belfry on the rue de la Sous Prefecture.

Dreaming of the past

Les Andelys is a town so steeped in history that it is impossible to wander around the streets without thinking at least a little of the past, and of what life must have been like in the days of Richard the Lionheart, and later under the rule of King Phillippe of France. The town has narrow streets and pretty half-timbered houses, each a reminder of another time, another world. Les Andelys is also equipped with several good museums, increasing the links with history, and the history of the town is of such interest and magnitude that it is certainly worth spending some time discovering the stories that are so keen to be told.

Living life today

Its feet may stand in the past, but the town certainly has its head in the present day. The narrow streets in the oldest part of town, near the Church of Saint Sauveur, are full of excellent restaurants and colourful shops where you can indulge in the thoroughly modern delights of shopping and dining. Les Andelys also has excellent amenities for most needs of modern life, with schools, health care, petrol stations, banks and similar necessities.

Out and about

There are many places to go and things to do in the immediate area, not least of which is the Monet Garden at Giverny. Anyone who loves the work of this most iconic of artists should make the pilgrimage to Giverny at least once! The beaches of Normandy lie to the north, while the romantic capital city of Paris is to the south.

Sports for all

If you have had your fill of culture and history and are ready to get a little physical, the area around Les Andelys will not disappoint. The countryside is perfect for climbers and hikers, and also for the more intrepid cyclists. Fishing is available locally and there are facilities for swimming and tennis too.

How to get there

The Normandy ferry ports make ferry travel a good option. You can travel to Dieppe, the closest port, from the UK by Transmanche, which runs from Newhaven, or you can travel with LD Lines to Le Havre. If you prefer to fly, you can fly to Paris and travel northwards. Drivers can find Les Andelys from the A13, N15 or N14.

Property prices and availability in and around Les Andelys

There are cheaper parts of Normandy, but few as beautiful and historic. If the beach resorts don't appeal to you, Les Andelys just might. For those with a little extra money to spend, there are some top quality properties here.

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Les Andelys AT A GLANCE

WHERE IS Les Andelys?

Les Andelys is located in the north of France. It lies in the north-west of the Eure department.

Les Andelys Property Map


Upper-Normandy Guide

Upper-Normandy Property Map


Eure Guide

  Eure Map

Population: 9,047

Access: By boat: Take the ferry to Dieppe or Le Havre. By rail: Take the Eurostar train to Calais, Lille or Paris. By road: You have the choice of the car ferries or the Eurotunnel car train service. The N14 runs close to the town. By air: Fly to Paris.

Economy: The economy is thriving and varied. Commerce and tourism both play a part, although Les Andelys is not aggressively touristy.

Interesting fact: Château Gaillard, the castle built above the town of Les Andelys, now lies in ruins, but remains massively impressive and a very interesting landmark.

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