Bayeux liberty tree
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Bayeux Liberty Tree in Normandy

The Bayeux Liberty Tree is a sound and light show that takes place every July and August. Visitors flock to Place de la Liberté as dusk falls to enjoy the evening spectacle.

It usually only happens on selected evenings so please check the timings . Place de la Liberté is right next to the cathedral making it very easy to find as the cathedral dominates the skyline. The cathedral is also lit up while the show is on meaning that there’s plenty to occupy spectators.

The 360 degree film is projected onto the trunk of a large tree planted in 1797. It replaced a number of smaller trees and was planted during the time of the French Revolution. It is known as l’arbre de la liberté.

The 2028 edition comprised of 10 stories about different aspects of freedom and liberty. It included references to Martin Luther King, Ghandi and World War II. Although the film is in French the music, images and colours appeal to young and old of all nationalities.

The event is held in the open air in a cobbled courtyard There’s no seating although you may be able to perch on a low stone wall or some steps. Typically the first people to arrive tend to gravitate towards the spots closest to the buildings. However, gradually the space fills up as more and more people arrive. Young children tend to sit at the front near the base of the tree as they’re mesmerised by the colours.

You can read more information here. The show is free and plays continually until 12.30am in July and midnight in August. The film lasts for around 40 minutes and changes each year.

The Cathedral and The Tapestry

The cathedral is usually open until around 10.30pm in the summer and entry is also free. Do check the timings. The cathedral was consecrated in 1077 and is magnificent. It was completed in the 19th century. The cathedral was originally home to the Bayeux Tapestry. It is now located a short distance away in the tapestry museum.

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