A World War II historic guide to discover the D-Day Landing Beaches in Normandy

Travel Normandy guide François Gauthron offers tours of the Normandy landing beaches, World War II battlefield. Come and discover the most famous part of Normandy where took place the Landing and the battle of Normandy in June 1944 to liberate France and Europe. You will be escorted by a qualified bilingual guide who will show you round the major sites of the beaches. Visit the highlights of World War II sites in Normandy with an expert license guide, first the most important sites of the landing beaches.

Normandy Travel

Travel in Normandy with Francois Gauthron

Tournières, 1st Shaef HQ Europe

Ike Head Quarter on Continent

On April 27th 1944 was established the first Headquarter «SHARPENER» located at 0.8 mile from Southwick House, close by the huge SHAEF Camp «SHIPMATE». General Eisenhower stayed there from June 2nd to June 12th 1944.

Regarding the inland movement on the continent, it had been decided to establish an advance HQ in the village of Maison in-between Port-en-Bessin and Bayeux on D6 road. Maison was selected because of its immediate proximity with Longues Air Strip (B11) and Tour en Bessin Airstrip (A13) and also a midway position between Omaha and Gold Sectors. This CP will be operational from July 31st and will be referenced as CP12.

But it wasn't used by Eisenhower, only as a SHAEF transit camp in August 1944. It was decided to organize a new CP at Le Planitre near Molay Littry close by A9D, this camp will be use from August 5th but still not by Ike. Another one is activated on August 7th at Tournières, referenced as CP21 «SHELLBURST» where Ike welcomed Prime Minister Churchill, Gen. Montgommery, on August 20th Gen. De Gaulle with Gen. Koenig and many other celebrities. An airstrip was built in the next field. After the Saint-Lô breakthrough («Cobra» Operation) the SHAEF HQ was transferred near Grainville, on August 16th, Communication Service was established in the Hôtel Normandy, code-named «LIBERTY».

On September 15th the new Grand HQ was moved to Saint-Ouen at Jullouville. Almost 3000 people worked there, and on August 30th Ike stayed at Château Montgommery at Saint Jean le Thomas 4 miles away from Jullouville. On September 10th the Grand HQ was transferred to Versailles (Palace Trianon).