Le Havre

Images en cours de chargement
The Porte Océane|The port of le Havre|Photo Jean-Luc MoyneThe Museum of modern art André-Malraux|Photo VelvetThe great volcano (space Niemeyer)|Photo Yann TiernyThe Town Hall square|Photo Philippe AlèsGraville Abbey is the oldest building in le Havre|

Le Havre fascinates by its strange beauty

Classified world heritage by Unesco, the city of le Havre fascinates by its strange beauty. It was heavily bombed during the second world war. The destroyed area was rebuilt between 1945 and 1964 by the famous architect Auguste Perret. Among the many cities rebuilt, Le Havre is exceptional for its unity, it is a remarkable example of architecture and urbanism of the post-war period based on the innovative exploitation of concrete.

Brief summary of history

The city and the port of le Havre are officially founded by King François Ier in 1517. Economic development during modern is hindered by the wars of Religion, conflicts with the English, epidemics and storms. It is from the end of the 18th century that Le Havre expands and the port takes off through the slave trade and then trade.

In 1852, under the pressure of an always-overcrowded centre, Napoleon III decided to dismantle the speakers and replace them with Grand boulevards. The harbour became a major industrial city incorporating a port dedicated to trafficking in raw materials (cotton, coffee, spices, exotic woods) and the transport of passengers with the rise of the transatlantic.

After the bombings of 1944, the workshop of Auguste Perret began to rebuild the city in concrete. The oil, chemical and automotive industry are dynamic during the Trente Glorieuses, but the 1970s mark the end of the golden age of ocean liners and the beginning of the economic crisis.

The neighbourhoods of the old centre of le Havre

The East and North of downtown rebuilt extend former districts (districts of Dang, Saint-Vincent, Graville, Massillon) spared by the bombardments of the second world war. The oldest building still standing in le Havre is the Abbey of Graville. The other medieval building in the town is the chapel of Saint-Michel of Ingouville.

The House of the owner of the end of the 18th century also survived the bombings of 1945. Its five circular levels completely decorated with carved wood fit around an amazing central and octagonal skylight. Due to the bombing of 1944, the heritage of the epoch modern is rare.

The Porte Océane

The monumental complex of the Porte Océane reflects the principles of the architect Auguste Perret: a traditional urban composition associated with patches of modern homes. With a near total area of 150 hectares, includes more than 12,000 homes and many buildings, it is one of the most consistent of the mid-20th century modern architecture. The site is inscribed on the list of world heritage of humanity by Unesco.

The curves of the volcano, imagined architecture by Oscar Niemeyer, contrasts with the rebuilt Centre. The accomplishments of renowned architects, include also the Chamber of Commerce and industry (René and Phine Weeke Dottelond) and Docks (Jean Nouvel) baths.


The Musée d'art moderne André Malraux
The Museum of Modern Art presents a collection of 15th to the 20th century embraces five centuries. It is one of the first museums in France for the period 1850-1920 with works by Courbet and Delacroix, impressionists including Monet, Sisley, Pissarro, Renoir, and Degas. There is also the largest collection of works of Eugène Boudin (1824-1898) that Baudelaire had sacred "King of the skies" and Raoul Dufy (1877-1953), "fawn from le Havre.

Musée Malraux - 2 bvd Clemenceau, 76600 Le Havre - Tel. + 33 (0) 2 35 19 62 62.

Other museums of le Havre

  • The House of the owner by its architecture from the 18th century, its inner composition organized around a central skylight, is an emblematic Museum of the history of le Havre. Some parts are treated like showrooms. The others are the apartments, the cabinets of curiosity, library and study of a wealthy trader Havre.
  • The museum of natural history, founded in 1881, offers fun and interactive exhibitions to discover and understand the wealth of the World animal, vegetable and mineral. It houses including nearly 8,000 drawings and manuscripts that form the collection of the Le naturalist Charles-Alexandre Lesueur (1778-1846).
  • The Abbey of Graville is surrounded by monastic buildings. The buildings from the 11th to the 18th century house a museum which includes a religious statuary, lapidary items and a collection of models of the late 19th and early 20th century.
  • The Perret show flat is a museum dedicated to the interior architecture, as well as the furnishings and everyday life since the Liberation until the mid-1950s.

The port of le Havre

The deep water harbour port is the second in France after that of Marseille for total traffic and the first french port for containers. Boat tours to discover tide (basins Coty and Ducrocq) basin with posts oil, ore and containers as well as towage and pilotage station positions. The lock François Ier is one of the largest such in the world works.

Walks in the sea 35 minutes only in July and August and fisheries at sea from 4 to 7 hours are organized.

Golf le Havre Octeville-sur-Mer

Located 10 km from le Havre, le Havre golf, if it does not seem to present difficulties when it is discovered. But we must be especially wary of its greens sizes medium-sized and very well defended and not very wide fairways surrounded by roughs thick. And particularly the formidable hole No. 18 where anything can happen. However, despite the often present wind in Normandy, the Havre golf isn't difficult physically speaking as very flat and so affordable without cart by all. 18 holes - Par 72 - 5'878 meters.

Golf le Havre Octeville-sur-Mer - 17, route Saint-Supplix, 76930 Octeville-sur-Mer - Tel. + 33 (0) 2 35 46 36 50.

Useful information :

Address :
76600 Le Havre

Good to know :
Tourism Office of le Havre 186 boulevard Clemenceau, 76600 Le Havre Tel. + 33 (0) 2 32 74 04 04

Free of charge.

A must see

  • The port of le Havre
  • The Porte Océane
  • The Musée d'art moderne André Malraux

Where to stay:

All accommodation