At the end of the bluff is the US Ranger Monument, the "Dagger".
We went inside the main bunker used by the Germans. We can imagine the loneliness of the German soldiers holed inside for months waiting for something to happen.
From here we drove pass the Omaha Beach and stopped at the American Cemetery and Memorial at Colleville. We first went to the semi-circular Memorial when details of the D-Day landing are shown on the walls.
In front is the reflecting pool
and beyond is the cemetery with 9,000+ marble crosses and occasional star-of-David tombstones of fallen US soldiers. This is just like scenes we see in movies (like The Omen and Saving Private Ryan) but this time it is poignantly real.
Most of the dead are named with details on the marble tombstones but a few are buried unknown who perished on the Omaha Beach beyond.
After the cemetery, we then visited the Visitors Centre. This is managed and manned by the US and we went through a security check before entry. This has exhibitions giving an overview of the invasions with video clips and a film in a cushy theatre. There are many memorabilia of the soldiers who fought in the landing.
In hindsight, I would think that it will be a better experience to visit the exhibition first before going to the Memorial and Cemetery.
The next stop is at Arromanches or more well-known as Port Winston where the artificial harbour called Mulberry was built to stage the Normandy landing. The town itself is small and we had a simple lunch in one of the creperies.
We then headed to the harbour down the road and you are reminded everywhere that a battle was fought here with all the weaponry on show, even near a carousel. You will notice that the Union Jack is displayed prominently since this is the British theatre of the Normandy landing.
The most eye-catching and stark reminder of the landing are the block remains of the artificial harbour (the Mulberry) that littered the beach and also far out at sea.
A lady was also trying to leave her mark on the Normandy beach.
That was my last impression of the Normandy beaches before we headed for another reminder of another much older invasion, this time that of the Battle of Hastings at Bayeux.