Nestled in the heart of the thousand-year-old city of Caen, the port of Caen-Ouistreham opens the doors to Normandy.
Thanks to its central location, the port is the gateway to breathtaking Normandy sites, from the D-Day beaches to Mont Saint-Michel, the typical villages of the Pays d’Auge and, of course, Caen, the city of William the Conqueror.
A unique call on the French Atlantic coast for cruisers !

The canal, a cruise within a cruise

Every cruise call in Caen-Ouistreham begins with a trip down a charming 15 km canal linking the waterfront at Ouistreham Riva-Bella to the cruise docks in downtown Caen, the regional metropolis.

The journey between the sea and the city of approximately 1h30 constitutes for the passengers a true foretaste of the history and the richness of the territory. First of all, they will be able to discover the Château de Bénouville dating from the 18th century, Pegasus Bridge, an emblematic site of the D-Day landings and the Battle of Normandy. Then the changing colours of the natural areas along the canal, such as the wooded park of Beauregard.

As well as providing a superb entrance to the destination, the canal facilitates the disembarkation/embarkation of passengers thanks to its constant water level.

The Dumont D’Urville (Ponant) crossing the famous Pegasus Bridge, ©Antoire SANTOS

Dedicated quays for cruise ships

Cruise ships are welcomed in an intimate setting with 2 dedicated quays according to the size of the ships. They each benefit from an enclosed, secure (ISPS-compliant) and personalised environment for every calls.

The Nouveau Bassin (Gaston Lamy/C4 quay) is ideal for luxury and expeditions cruise lines. It can accommodate cruise vessels in Caen city centre (up to 160m long, 27m wide, 9m draft, 33m air draft). Cruise passengers can walk to the historic and commercial centre in less than 15 minutes.

The Calix quay (D1) can accommodate larger ships (up to 173m long, 27m wide, 9m draft) in the best conditions.

World Navigator (Mystic Cruises) preparing to dock at Nouveau Bassin in Caen city centre © Mickaël Baucheron

A city centre port of call

Welcome to our unique destination in the heart of Normandy, one of the most beautiful regions of France !

To begin with, take advantage of your free time to discover the city of Caen and its thousand-year-old heritage. A medieval city transformed by William the Conqueror, home of three architectural jewels: the Men’s Abbey, the Ladies Abbey and the Caen Castle. Caen is also full of private mansions, churches and unusual places to explore.

Abbaye aux Hommes de Caen

Stroll through the pedestrian and shopping streets to find the prettiest independent boutiques or the latest fashion pieces in department stores like Galeries Lafayette. Enjoy without moderation the “French Art de vivre” in Normandy with a coffee on a terrace or a stroll through one of the colourful daily markets. French gastronomy lovers will want to book for sure, one of the many fine restaurants in the city (including 2 Michelin starred restaurants).

Looking for cultural outings ? Visit the Museum of Fine Arts or the many galleries and exhibition sites in Caen. History buffs can visit the Caen Memorial, the Museum of Normandy or the Viking sites of Ornavik !

Caen and its surroundings are rich in events all year long with many great events every month ! Find them in our events calendar.

The central gateway to the most beautiful sites of Normandy

Thanks to its central location in the heart of the region, the port can be reached in a few minutes to the main tourist sites in Normandy. Less time on the road means more time for the best experiences on excursions!

Due to its location and history, the port is the reference port for visiting the beaches, sites and museums of the D-Day Landings and the Second World War. The largest museum dedicated to peace and the history of this period, the Caen Memorial is at 15 minutes by bus from the quays. Sword Beach is at the same distance. Juno Beach, Gold Beach, Arromanches-les-Bains, Omaha Beach and the U.S cemetery are all less than an hour away. 

Our best-selling half-day or full-day excursions near Caen  :

  • The D-Day landing beaches
  • The Pays d’Auge, gastronomical and traditional area 
  • In the footsteps of William the Conqueror : Caen, Bayeux et Falaise
  • The Mont Saint-Michel

Exclusive experience for cruise guests

Your visit should be unique in France ! That’s why the Caen-Ouistreham Cruise Club supports the various cruise professionals to prepare you the perfect call.

For your shore excursions, we will find the latest unusual and authentic experiences to fully immerse you in our lovely Normandy. You will meet locals, exploring the region off the beaten tracks, away from the crowds and experiencing the true French art of living.

The cruise club is organised to meet the needs of cruise lines by proposing a range of services for each call :

  • A tourist information office at the quay, with multilingual brochures and an agent to inform an assist passengers and crew members
  • A shuttle service*
  • A local producers’ market*
  • A concert on the quay*
  • Tastings of local products*
  • A guide to comment the descent of the canal*
  • And any tailor-made service !

*services on request

Saxophone devant un paquebot, croisière à Caen la mer

Practical information and access

Access to the cruise docks (regulated on port of call days) is via the “Chaussée d’Alger” from Caen city centre and via “voie 810” from Ouistreham.

Find here the position of the Nouveau Bassin (quai Gaston Lamy/C4) and quai de Calix (D1) and some useful downloads :


Cruise coordinator (Caen la Mer Tourism Board and Cruise club Caen-Ouistreham Normandy Cruise) : Morgan Pravos, ; +33(0)2 31 27 97 51

Harbour master’s office : ; +33 (0)2 31 36 22 00

The Caen-Ouistreham Normandy Cruise club is a proud member of Cruise Europe, the Normandy Cruise Destinations and the French Atlantic Ports.