I slept soundly and greeted the sweet sunshine that poured into Petra and Nordahl’s lovely flat in the center of Cherbourg. The sky was nearly cloudless and I could tell it was going to be an absolutely fantastic afternoon.

Petra and I enjoyed cup after cup of yummy coffee and toast with rhubarb jam and laughed about silly things like girls usually do. Cultures are wonderful in this way: you can travel the world and the little things you take particular delight in follow you around and manifest themselves in different ways. The joyfulness of sharing a cup of coffee (or three!) with my Czech friend was simply irreplaceable.

We left the flat and went on another tour of Cherbourg, this time to see what we could see of the sea from the Montagne du Roule (say that ten times fast). We walked along the Avenue de Paris to another beautiful park, full of exotic birds and not so exotic birds (giant chickens and geese), and I looked up to the beautiful blue sky to see the Fort du Roule, where the Germans, while they occupied Cherbourg, entrenched and offered fierce resistance before surrendering to the Allies and Free French.

Petra and me, on top of the Montagne du Roule. It was a little bit windy!

The Montagne du Roule itself is noteworthy because the mountain hosts intertwining tunnels dug entirely by man-power of a prisoner held in the mountain for two years. There is a war museum in the fort perched on the side of the mountain, too. It was opened in June 1954, just nine years after V-E Day.

Looking out on the Montagne du Roule. You can see the fort tucked on the right side of the mountain.

The following pictures are what we saw when we got to the top of the mountain! I hope you enjoy the pictures as much as I enjoyed the experience. The wind whipped our hair around and kissed our cheeks while the warm sun brushed our cheeks with a little bit of red. Boats drifted lazily in and out of the harbour, and I felt that if I had a picnique, I could stay up on the mountain for a very long afternoon.

One View from the mountain...

Second view from the mountain top

Petra's photography! Me, hopping down from our perch high above the ocean.

If you want to learn more about the Fort du Roule, click here

But if you really want to see beautiful countryside, immaculate parks and oceanfront, there is no choice but to visit Cherbourg for yourself. I promise you won’t be disappointed!