Head off to Rouen, the trip will take just under two hours. When you arrive you have to visit the Rouen Cathedral. This magnificent building dates back to the 4th century. The façade was painted by Claude Monet and Richard the Lionheart's heart is kept in one of the tombs here.
Historians will be enthralled to visit the Vieille Ville where Joan of Arc was burned at the stake. A simple field of wildflowers marks the spot of her martyrdom. See the Big Clock in the middle of the rue du Gros Horloge and climb to the top for stunning city views. Literature lovers will know that this is the birthplace of writer Gustave Flaubert who wrote the novel Madame Bovary. His house has been converted into a museum of his life and makes a fascinating visit.
After all the history, head for Place Saint Marc, where you can shop for fresh produce, flowers, bric à brac and antiques at the local market.
After a light lunch of Quiche Lorraine at Le p'tit Paul, head off in your van to the seaside town of Dieppe, only 45 minutes away. The drive is spectacular through the Norman countryside with beautiful peaceful green pastures, forests and white cliffs. Have a dip in the sea and return for dinner to the Château du Bosc Theroulde, a high-class eatery set in an elegant Napoleon III style building.