Next stop was at Ver-sur-Mer. We planned to visit the Musée America Gold Beach, but we found out the museum didn't open until 10.30 a.m. We would have to wait for over a half an hour. That would have been a waste of time, so we drove on and maybe we'll see it another time.


Mulberry B harbour

At Arromanches we had to pay for parking. It was the first time on the holiday that we had to pay. Ironically, even in the bigger places we didn’t have to pay. With the parking ticket we also received a ticket to take the tourist train; from the panorama place to Arromanches 360° (10 meters) to musée du Débarquement (500 meters) and back to the panorama place. The train started every half hour, but every time we wanted to take the train, it had just left. So we walked every part.
After D-day the allies needed a harbor to discharge materials, but they only have a fishermen’s harbor which wasn't large enough. Therefore the allies made two artificial harbors in front of the beach. The harbors were called Mulberry A, which is near Vierville and Mulberry B which is near Arromanches. In the sea the allies scuttled ships to form wave breaks. After that caissons were put into place. The caissons were transported 16 kilometers via roads to the beach. On June 12th, there were already discharged many men, vehicles and materials. From the 19th until 22nd of June was a heavy storm that destroyed Mulberry A completely and a big part of Mulberry B. Only Mulberry B harbor was repaired.
Phoenix caissons of Mulberry B From the panorama place is a very good view of Gold Beach and the remains of the artificial harbor of Arromanches. On the panorama panel you can see where the caissons and block ships from Mulberry B have been.
On the panorama place was a German radar station. It was destroyed by an air attack just before D-day.
Arromanches 360° is a circorama that shows a movie on nine surrounding screens. We saw parts of the war journals and a chopper flight over the modern day landscape. During the chopper flight you could see the landscape all around and when the chopper turned it felt like you were really turning.
At the time we were there, an English school class was visiting too. The girls laughed about the toilet as it was only a hole in the ground. They could not understand how to use it.
Musée du Débarquement (Museum of the Artificial Harbour) was about the harbor Mulberry B. In the museum you can see models of the harbor. Still today, some parts of the harbor remain on the beach near Arromanches.
In an information office we asked where we could find a bank. But the women there only spoke French. At first she didn’t understand and then she sent us in the wrong direction.

Phoenix caisson of Mulberry B Phoenix caissons of Mulberry B Blockships that form breakwaters Blockships that form breakwaters