June 6, 2024 marks the 80th Anniversary of D-Day, the multi-nation invasion that would mark the turning point in the battle to free continental Europe from the Nazis. 156,000 men and not a few women from the United States, Canada, and six other countries served bravely on this cold and foggy day, and throughout the summer of 1944. Thousands gave their lives on the beaches in Normandy.
Did you know “D Day” is a military term for the beginning of a large combat operation? It’s a term still in use today. Without question, the most famous D-Day of all time is the one that began the liberation of Europe in 1944.
Each year, June 6th is a special day in Normandy, with commemorative events, re-enactments, parades and official speeches in small towns, along the landing beaches and most especially at the cemeteries. Locals who tend the graves of the fallen take special care on June 6, placing national flags and flowers at each grave. The American Cemetery at Colleville-Sur-Mer, alone, has 9,400 graves that will hoist a flag.
Our Top 80th Anniversary of D-Day Tours from Paris
- The Normandy D-Day Tour from Paris: This tour provides an in-depth exploration of significant D-Day landmarks, including the Normandy American Cemetery at Colleville-sur-Mer, Omaha Beach, and the Pointe du Hoc. The tour is designed to offer a comprehensive understanding of the events of D-Day and honors the servicemen involved. It’s a full-day experience that provides a blend of historical insight and scenic views of the French coastline.
- Private Normandy D-Day Tour: For a more personalized experience, this private tour allows visitors to customize their itinerary, ensuring a focus on areas of particular interest. The tour includes visits to key D-Day sites and offers the flexibility to include additional stops, such as the Pointe du Hoc and the German gun battery at Longues Sur Mer. The tour starts with a pickup from Paris and includes guide services throughout the day.
- Normandy D-Day and Mont St. Michel Overnight: This popular two-day tour includes the American D-Day landing beaches, Mont St. Michel, and an overnight stay in Bayeux.
Can you Visit Normandy for the 80th Anniversary of D-Day?
In 2024, the usual battle sites and cemeteries will be cordoned off and under heavy security. Only invited guests and veterans, local officials, and international dignitaries will be at the events planned for June 6. King Charles is expected, performing one of his first international official duties. Local guide services will be suspended for this date, though June 5 and 7 will be available for touring.
The Normandy region will not miss their yearly commemoration. A light show spectacular will be open to locals and visitors on June 1, 2024, at nightfall. That time of year means a start around 10 p.m. 2500 drones will present a grand salute to the D day heroes, stretching along all five landing beaches: Omaha, Utah, Sword, Juno and Gold. That’s 50 miles of coastline. Side note, Utah and Omaha got their code names via Allied General Bradley, who asked two privates fitting out his London offices what states they were from. British Commander Montgomery wanted fish names for his sectors and chose jellyfish, swordfish and goldfish, to be shortened to Gold, Sword and Jelly. Canadian Wing Commander Dawnay wisely changed jelly to his wife’s name, Juno. The objective was to use odd and innocuous names so as to throw off any suspicions German intelligence may have had should they intercept communications about the fateful day.
The Normandy region is welcoming any and everyone to write a testimonial to the D-Day heroes for the 80th Anniversary of D-Day.