Utah Beach D-Day Museum
D-Day and Battle of Normandy museums
The Utah Beach Landing Museum was built at a locality named La Grande Dune on the remains of the German W5 strongpoint that US soldiers from the 4th Infantry Division stormed on June 6, 1944, landing on the beach coded “Utah“. Michel de Vallavieille, mayor of the commune of Sainte-Marie-du-Mont, decided to create a memorial area in memory of the liberation and to consolidate the Franco-American friendship. On D-Day, when he was a teenager, Michel was mistakenly wounded by American fire, before being treated urgently by military medic who had just landed; without retaining any resentment against the Allies, he insisted on creating one of the first museums of the Battle of Normandy. It was inaugurated on June 6, 1962, gathering dozens of collectibles collected over the exchanges with his knowledge from across the Atlantic.
Constantly enlarged, the museum went through its main extension in 1994 on the occasion of the fiftieth anniversary of the landing of Normandy, with the construction of a bay window offering an exceptional panorama on Utah Beach and sheltering vehicles as well as armaments of time. In 2007, a new expansion project was created, with the creation of a glass building housing a B-26 Marauder bomber and an area dedicated to air forces engaged in the bombing of Utah Beach.
The museum now offers more than 3,000 m² of exhibition space to discover the history of the men and women who participated in World War II operations in the area. Vehicles, landing craft, armaments, uniforms, archival films, rare documents and testimonies allow to understand with precision the history of the landing of Normandy. On the occasion of D-Day commemorations, the museum regularly hosts official ceremonies as well as events such as the International Film Festival of the Second World War.
– Parking lot for coaches near the museum.
– Parking lot for light vehicles near the museum.