Normandy is a region in northwestern France. It was named after the Norse people who conquered the area in the 800's. It lies along the English Channel coast between the regions of Picardy and Brittany. Famous towns include Rouen, the capital of the old province; Le Havre, a leading port; Honfleur; Caen; Bayeux; and Cherbourg. The inhabitants are well known as sailors and farmers. The farmers specialize in dairying and raising fruits, especially apples for cider and brandy. Iron ore is mined near Caen. Tourism is an important industry along the coast.

Normandy attracted worldwide attention on June 6, 1944, when Allied troops landed on its beaches. From Normandy, the Allies drove the Germans out of France. Many of the towns in Normandy were damaged in the fighting.

Contributor: Hugh D. Clout, Ph.D., Prof. of Geography, Univ. College, London.