This tranquil little town is the capital of le Pays d’Auge. It’s surrounded by gentle rolling hills and neat, picturesque farmlands typical of the Calvados countryside. Because of time constraints, we didn’t get to sample the cheese and liquor for which the region is famous. We did see the imposing Basilique Ste-Therese, completed in the first half of the 20th century. Its grand architecture is intended to impress, though unlike another famous Basilique in Montmartre, its style comes across as a little artificial and inharmonic. Nevertheless it’s quite a wonder to find this striking edifice in a relatively small town. The Normandy countryside is full of pleasant surprises.
Lisieux is a must-stop if you’re doing the “cheese tour”, but it’s still a worthwhile detour even if you’re not.
Last visit: 2004