Can it be that I was standing here, on a beautiful beach on a hot summer's day where so many men had fallen! As my wife and I strolled along the beach, it all looked so tranquil and light-years away from the hell on earth it must have been in June 1944.
We were both born after the war and would not consider ourselves 'war mad'. We camped at a camp site just 100m from the beach itself and visited the museum as part of our stay. The museum is good value for money and has a gift shop with reasonable prices. There's also an independent café/bar/restaurant 1 minute from the museum entrance.
The museum is fairly new - having been finally completed in 2010. It is surrounded by monuments of that era with inscriptions and dedications to the various units that served and fought there. There is also a plaque in memorial to the 900 or so servicemen that died on an exercise at England's Slapton Sands, Devon just practicing for D-Day.
The museum is full of artefacts - many of which are relatively new additions. It is well laid out and recounts the history of D-Day and beyond, using exhibits and a film theatre. There is also a panoramic glass covered walkway where you can look out over the dunes, barbed wire and anti-landing craft ironwork. Yes, it's very Americanised, but after all, they were the ones who fought and died there!
In addition, there are two interesting towns close by - also with a lot of war history. These are, St. Marie du Mont and St. Mere Eglise. Both have numbered placards on town walls/buildings which, when followed in numerical order, give local accounts of skirmishes between American and Germans during the early stages of D-Day.
It was all very moving and we were humbled by the sacrifice of these and allied servicemen and women who died in order that we may walk free on that beach on that summer's day.
If you own or manage Utah Beach D-Day Museum, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.