The history of Granville dates back to the first millennium and is closely linked to the Bay of Mont Saint-Michel. The past Granville as a port of Grande Pêche and bisquines has made it today the first harbor shells in France, that is to say, specialized in shellfish fishing.
History of Granville
The peninsula was called Roque de Lihou, where Lihou meant sloping rock. This name is particularly because of its location on a rocky promontory. It was only after its capture by the Normans that it took the acronym Granville, after the name of the Viking leader who led to its conquest. In the middle of the second millennium, during the Hundred Years War, King Henry VI of England built the fortress of Granville to isolate Mont Saint-Michel, but it still falls into the hands of the French. Charles VII strengthens then Granville and grants to the inhabitants of the advantages such as the exemption of task and a right of market.
The city then begins to prosper, in this case thanks to the Canadian cod fishery and later the oyster fishery. The first ships to Canada, to Newfoundland, mark the beginning of the Grande Pêche. To overcome the void that the long months of travel were to leave between them, the sailors and their families were gathered around a Great Festival, which is at the origin of the current Carnival of Granville. In addition to the activities of the cod fishermen, a community of wealthy Jews expelled from Spain came to Granville and took much part in its development, including arming a large fleet of the city.
Thus armed, Granville then gains the right to attack and loot enemy ships, what will be called "the right to practice the race", from the reign of King Louis XIV. Many buildings in Granville are armed. About fifteen corsairs will also mark Granville including Admiral Georges-Rene Pléville Le Pelley. The latter even has his statue erected on the port of Granville. After this period, conflicts led to bombings of the city, then large fires and several houses were destroyed. Rehabilitation works have been undertaken to restore Granville's reputation. We offer tours guided by your driver guide.
Renowned for shellfish fishing, the city is also recognized among others oysters, scallops, clams and especially whelks. In 2016, shellfish accounted for almost 80% of tonnages landed. A shellfish festival - All the sea on a plateau - is regularly organized under the tide pool of Granville, during which tasting, sale of shellfish, cooking workshops offered by Grand Chefs for adults and children are in the spotlight.
The construction of a Plaisance Basin in 1975 to complete the Port of Granville also allowed it to become a seaside resort. There are four sand beaches in Granville: one in the northern part between the peninsula and the river Le Boscq, the other three on the south side of the bay, alternating with cliffs. The town is even part of the Association of the most beautiful detours of France, thanks to its beauty and its extremely rich environment. The most beautiful landscape offered by Granville is surely the granite archipelago of the Chausey Islands, composed of 52 islands visible at high tide and nearly four hundred others that can be seen only at low tide. The granite of these islands is found in several buildings including the sidewalks of Paris, the abbey of Mont Saint-Michel or even to rebuild the former rival of Granville, Saint-Malo. For your city trip, do not hesitate to book a car service in Paris.
What to visit in Granville?
The Christian Dior Museum
On the heights of the flat Gousset, facing the archipelago of Chausey, the family of Christian Dior settled in a villa called at that time "the Rhumbs". This house was designed by the young fashion designer and his mother, Madeleine Dior, between 1906 and 1930. The childhood home of the famous designer, the residence is now a museum dedicated to him: from his childhood to his accession to the ultimate sphere of fashion, his whole life is traced there. The site is accessible to adults for less than 10 euros, it is free for children under 12 years.
The Regional Center of Boating
Located between Mont Saint-Michel and the Chausey Islands, the Regional Center of Nautism of Granville or CRNG proposes nautical learning activities and tourist practice: catamarans, windsurf boards, dinghies. It is also a vocational training center for boating where learners are sanctioned with federal diplomas and state patents. In addition to using the pleasure pool, the center has its own water reservoir for its activities. The presence of the center in Granville testifies to the potential of the city in terms of nautical activities. He places Granville at the first place of French Sailing schools.
The Granville Salmon
This workshop is a place to bring honor to Granville and its maritime riches. In particular, it shows the ancestral technique of smoking fish, and this in a traditional way. Everything is done by hand! How to get the fish fillet, how to salt it, slice it, etc. You will also be able to taste the product of the house, proudly called "the true taste of smoked salmon". But besides salmon, other fish and shellfish are also tasting such as mackerel, cod or hake or scallops. The scallop and scallops are also smoked.
The Museum of Art and History of Granville
Sheltered by the Logis du Roy on the Upper Town, this museum tells the story of Granville, seaside life and the maritime activities that have marked the city. There are collections of headdresses, jewelery and costumes representing life in Normandy in the 19th century. The peculiarities of Granville furniture also hold a place. Conferences, symposiums are held regularly there as well as educational workshops for children, temporary exhibitions.
The Chausey Islands
The archipelago of the Chausey Islands is a must-see destination during a stay in Granville. An impression of "end of the world" emerges, so the atmosphere seems wild. The largest of the islands is inhabited by only thirty people. There is only one tourist establishment strictly speaking, some lodgings, an old chapel built in the middle of the 19th century. The interest of visiting the islands is especially in the curiosity to see nature, to walk there, to make some excursion, to listen to the lapping of the water and the song of the birds, the dolphins and the seals, admire the clear water and the white sand beaches. Lobster, bar and conger fishing are also popular here. For your stay, know that our fleet is composed of luxury cars, vans and pickups.
Private car transportation from Orly airport to Granville
Located in Normandy, Granville is also called the corsair city. It is 77.8 km from the Airborne Museum and 20.4 km from Parc Zoologique de Champrépus. The city is 358.6 km from CDG Airport and 352.8 km from Orly Airport.