Do you recognize these bottles?
They are Bénédictine – a herbal liqueur – made exclusively in Palais Bénédictine of Fécamp. Said to contain 27 herbs and spices, using a secret recipe guarded through generations, it is the sole reason we made a detour to the coastal town of Normandy.
At first sight, the palace has an elaborate and highly decorative exterior.
As for its interiors, we never had the opportunity to find out. Because Palais Bénédictine has a tricky opening hour. From 10th Feb to 31st March, its morning hours are 10:30 am – 12:30 pm. Except that, the last admission is really one hour earlier. Long story short, we arrived at the door 11:30 am, just in time to miss it.
Before leaving Fécamp, we drove up to Cap Fagnet. With its wind farm,
and a panoramic view of Côte d’Albâtre, it is the highest point on the Alabaster coast.
There’s also a lovely little chapel Notre-Dame du Salut. An old gentlemen who happened to be passing by kindly let us in and turned the lights on. The outside walls are made of seashells, and the inside adorned with nautical motif.
On our way back to the car, we encountered a lone ewe who had just given birth.
We observed in silence as she circled around her newborn licking him encouraging him to get up. We hoped the little one could make it.
After a picnic lunch overlooking the coast, we returned to Palais Bénédictine in hopes that the museum store might still be open. I had my eyes set on these Bénédictine-filled chocolate to take home. Plus now that we had food in the stomach, we were set to do some Bénédictine tasting.
Sadly by then, the store was also closed. So no booze for us <period>
So with a bleeding heart, we left Fécamp acknowledging the fact that, the Bénédictine was just NOT meant to be.
***The REALLY IMPORTANT Opening times 2017
10th Feb to 31st March: 10:30 am – 12:30 pm and 2:30 pm –
1st Apr to 7th July: 10:00 am – 1:00 pm and 2:00 pm – 6:30 pm
8th July to 3rd Sept: 10:00 am – 6:45 pm non-stop
(ticket office closes at 6:00 pm)
4th Sept to 5th Nov: 10:00 am – 1:00 pm and 2:00 pm – 6:30 pm
6th Nov to 15th Dec: morning (contact us) and 2:00 pm – 5:00 pm
16th Dec to 7th Jan 2018: 10:30 am – 12:30 pm and 2:30 pm –
***Morning and Afternoon: the last admission is one hour earlier
and the shop closing time is 30 minutes later
Tea Room and Shop:
10:00 am – 7:00 pm non-stop: week-ends in May, June and September.
Closing Days: 1st May, 25th December and 1st January.