Fontaine-Henry is a commune in the French province of Normandy, located northwest of Caen, France – some say at its very gateway. This small village in the region of Calvados is famous for its Fontaine-Henry Castle, which has a celebrated slate roof that slopes steeply. In fact, the roof is actually taller than the building it covers and rises higher than the surrounding treetops. The castle is one of the traditional iconic pictures of Normandy. The castle was building during the Renaissance. It replaced the ruins of a fortress. The house has remained under the ownership of the same family (through the female line) all these years. The family still uses it as their home.
Fontaine-Henry also has a notable church called the Thaon Church. This structure is attractively situated in the Mue Valley. Unfortunately, the church is no longer used for its original religious purpose. It does, however, provide an excellent example of Romanesque architecture in Normandy at its best. Its setting is romantic, too.
North of Fontaine-Henry, the basilica church of Notre-Dame-de-la-Delivrande provides a beautiful model of Neo-Gothic architecture.
With the Fontaine-Henry Castle and the Thaon Church, it may well be worth your while to make a detoured stop at Fontaine-Henry on your way to Caen.
Gaudez, René, Hervé Champollion, and Angela Moyon. Tour of Normandy. Rennes: Éditions Ouest-France, 1996. ISBN: 2737317185.
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