Why choose a cruise to Le Havre?
Le Havre is a city of contrasts, with a modernist interior and host of contemporary museums and galleries. Its Blue Flag beach and numerous parks and gardens provide room for relaxation away from cultural pursuits. And if you’re in need of retail therapy, Le Havre will not disappoint, with a host of appealing shopping arcades, pedestrianised streets and lively markets.
Beyond the city there are numerous excursions to consider during your Le Havre cruise, with the town of Honfleur, situated across the Seine, a popular day trip. Rouen, a quaint hamlet with half-timbered churches, an old marketplace and impressive Notre-Dame Cathedral is also worth a look. Whether exploring the town or Normandy’s attractions beyond, Le Havre opens up a wealth of possibilities.
A guide to Le Havre’s hotspots
Le Havre Cathedral is top of the city’s attractions and was one of the few buildings in the old town left standing after the Allied bombing raids. The Gothic-style bell tower was built around 1540 along with its decadent baroque façade. History buffs will also enjoy a trip to the Natural History Museum which combines science with entertainment in the form of a number of themed tours, exhibitions and interactive experiences.
Art enthusiasts should not miss the chance to visit MuMa, the Musée d’Art Moderne André Malraux, to see works from masters such as Gauguin, Renoir and Degas. MuMa also has the largest single collection of the works of Boudin.
St Joseph’s Church, a modernist masterpiece by Auguste Perret, is a powerful symbol of post-war regeneration and one of Le Havre’s most iconic sights. Its self-supporting tower is a hollow tube made from reinforced concrete and a testament to contemporary architecture techniques.
When the sun is shining take a stroll in Parc de Rouelles, 160 hectares of fields, woodland and ponds in the heart of Le Havre. The arboretum, which boasts 259 tree varieties, is not to be missed.
If you’ve had enough of sightseeing, head to Le Havre’s large beach, situated not far from the port. It has Blue Flag status and perfect for a spot of sunbathing or bathing. During the summer months you’ll find a selection of restaurants on the promenade serving up some lunchtime treats, ice creams and snacks.
Cruise Lines that sail to the port of Le Havre
The best time to visit Le Havre
In terms of sightseeing, it doesn’t really matter when you visit Le Havre, there are so many attractions to visit and explore, so even if you go in the rainiest month of September, you’ll find plenty to keep you occupied.
However, if you like it sunny July is the hottest month with average temperatures of around 18°C. The coolest month is January with temperatures of 5°C.
Did you know?
- The church of St Joseph in Le Havre has the highest bell tower in France
- Le Havre is twinned with Tampa in Florida and Southampton in the UK
- Le Havre means The Harbour and was founded in 1517 by King Francois I
- The clouds and light in Le Havre inspired impressionist painters Claude Monet and Eugène Boudin.