caen fete du port, normandieCaen (14, Calvados, Normandy) is a major French port and a cross-channel ferry port – but, of course, the Ferry docks at Ouistreham which is on the coast, whilst the city of Caen is 10 miles inland – but is nevertheless a major port in its own right, by virtue of the Caen canal which links the city to the sea. Large ocean-going ships use the canal, which also has another claim to fame, i.e. Pegasus Bridge at Benouville – a bascule bridge which enables ships to pass, but is also the site of the first encounter between the Allies and the Germans on D-Day in 1944, and the beginning of the Normandy landings.

So, just to clarify – the Brittany Ferries route from Portsmouth to Caen actually terminates at Ouistreham on the coast, whilst Caen, which is 10 miles inland still serves as a major shipping port.

So to celebrate its maritime heritage, the city of Caen holds its Fete du Port (Harbour Festival) ir every other year with visits onboard boats and ships, a maritime parade, boat trips, stands selling marine and other items, music and dancing, a collection of historic boats and a canoe-kayak water polo competition!

There is also a Fete du Port at Port-en-Bessin (14 Calvados, Normandie) on 22 July 2022 some 41km/25 miles from Caen see Normandie Tourisme

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