I have been writing posts about the towns along the white cliffs of the Alabaster Coast (Côte d'Albâtre) and I thought I would provide a little overview and some practical information on how to get there from Paris. The Pays de Caux is a plateau of Upper Cretaceous chalk, like that which forms the North and South Downs in southern England. It forms a rough triangle from Rouen and Le Havre on the Seine, to the south, to Dieppe in the north. The name caux is Norman for calcium carbonate or chalk and the white cliffs of the Alabaster Coast are the result of sea erosion of the plateau on the edges. The area is covered with large farms and dotted with mostly small but beautiful towns.
As part of my series of posts on the Paix de Caux in Normandy and the Côte d'Albâtre (Alabaster Coast), I thought I would present our pictures of the small town of Veules les Roses. From the creation of the county of Rouen and of the Duchy of Normandy in 911, the Vikings settled a great number of people in the Paix de Caux and left an enduring legacy in the Cauchois Norman dialect but also in the ethnic makeup of the Cauchois Normans. Cauchois is a notable dialect of the Norman language and the Pays de Caux is one of the remaining strongholds of the Norman language outside the Cotentin. Nestling since the 4th century in the hollow of a valley opening on to the sea, Veules Les Roses will seduce you with the charms of its seashore, its rich heritage and its wooded setting crossed by the smallest river in France, the Veules, only three quarters of a mile long. Before 1897 the town was called Veules en Caux, the mayor of the time changed the name to a more evocative Veules Les Roses.