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Manche is a Frenchmarker department in Normandy named after La Manche ("the sleeve"), which is the French name for the English Channelmarker.


Manche is one of the original 83 departments created during the French Revolution on March 4, 1790. It was created from part of the province of Normandie.

The first capital was Coutancesmarker until 1796, and it resumed that role after World War II because of the almost complete destruction of Saint-Lômarker during the D-Day invasion of Normandy. When Saint-Lô was rebuilt, it again became the capital.


The department includes the Cotentin Peninsulamarker and the islands of Chauseymarker. It is part of the region of Basse-Normandiemarker and is surrounded on three sides by the English Channel, with 350 km of coastline, and on the other by the departments of Calvadosmarker, Ornemarker, Mayennemarker, and Ille-et-Vilainemarker. Geologically, the department is connected to the Massif Armoricain.


The climate is oceanic, with mild winters, temperatures rarely reaching below freezing, and temperate summers, around 25°C. Precipitation is substantial, but varies greatly by region, between 700mm on the coast and 1300mm in the southern central area.

The west coast benefits from the Gulf stream's influence, allowing the naturalization of many mediterranean and exotic plants (mimosas, palms, agaves...).

There is often a sea breeze on the coast, which combined with tides contributes to quick temperature changes over a single day.


Inhabitants of the department are called Manchots or Manchois.


  • Football : main clubs : AS Cherbourg, US Avranches, Saint-Lô, Granville, Villedieu, UST Équeurdreville-Hainneville...
  • Cycling : the Tour de France has visited the department 21 times with stages ending at : Cherbourg (16), Avranches(2), Granville(1), Saint-Hilaire-du-Harcouët(1) and the Mont Saint-Michel(1).
  • Sailing: the Solitaire du Figaro has come to Cherbourg several times.
  • Thai boxing : Villedieu-les-Poêles
  • Badminton : Two local clubs compete in the national championship (N3): St Hilaire du Harcouet and Hainneville.
  • Golf: course: Granvillemarker, Bréhal, Coutainville, Cherbourg, Centre Manche, Fontenay, Côte des Isles

See also

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