A Day in the Impressionist Village

The best addresses in Giverny

© Maison et Jardins Claude Monet Giverny - Droits réservés.

There are village names that evoke an entire world of imagination, and Giverny is no exception. Intrinsically linked to Claude Monet, this bucolic paradise owes its fame to the impressionist painter, who made it the cradle of his inspiration. Here, visitors embark on a journey into Monet's world, immersing themselves in his paintings and discovering a typical Normandy village and its countryside, just an hour by train from Paris. It's the perfect place to escape the city for a day... or more!


The Unmissable Visit

La maison de Claude Monet à Giverny

A must-see in Giverny is Monet's pink house with green shutters and gardens, where the artist settled with his family in 1883 to paint en plein air. Tip: aim for off-peak hours and weekdays, then book your tickets in advance to fully enjoy this coveted estate without the crowds, wandering through where the painter lived, between the blue kitchen and yellow dining room. The cherry on top? His own room offering a breathtaking view of the gardens from the windows.

Next stop, the famous "Clos Normand" and "Water Garden" created by Monet himself as a true landscaper. Today, the house's gardeners continue to care for this haven of peace as it was in the artist's time. Delight in the scents of cherry trees, tulips, daffodils, or peonies covering the ground by the thousands before refreshing yourself by the ponds where you can admire the water lilies from the legendary Japanese bridge, and stroll among wisteria, bamboo, and Japanese maples. You'd think you were in the land of the rising sun or in a Monet painting. An enchanted interlude.

Monet's house, 84 rue Claude Monet, Giverny. Open every day from late March to late October from 9:30 am to 6 pm. Reservations strongly recommended to avoid long queues. Starting from €89 round trip including transportation.

© Maison et Jardins Claude Monet Giverny - Droits réservés. 


The Museum Not to Miss

Le musée de l'impressionnisme à Giverny

The Giverny Museum of Impressionisms is just a few steps from Monet's House, yet it's often overlooked by tourists. What a mistake! This human-sized museum unveils two new exhibitions each year dedicated solely to the world of the impressionists. After a cycle dedicated to flowers, it's the sea that takes center stage at the moment: one of the favorite subjects of 19th-century artists.

It's a tidal wave of 80 paintings, each more incredible than the next, that welcomes visitors. The exhibition "Impressionism and the Sea" allows you to discover all the moods of the sea according to the impressionist masters. In addition to admiring Monet's works depicting Normandy, its cliffs, beaches, and ports, several paintings by his peers, including forgotten painters, are also displayed: Maxime Maufra, Jean-François Auburtin, Paul Gauguin, Édouard Manet, and many others have given their vision of the Norman and Breton waters. The reason? It's near these shores that these artists found the most favorable light to immortalize nature. The sunlight reflects in Monet's landscapes or the moonlight in Maxime Maufra's stunning painting "Moonlight Effect." For the impressionists, painting the sea was also an opportunity to create movement, especially with storms like in Courbet's "The Wave" where the waves emerge, monstrous. A true surge of colors and masterpieces!

"Impressionism and the Sea," until June 30 at the Giverny Museum of Impressionisms, 99 rue Claude Monet, Giverny. Open every day from late March to late October from 10 am to 6 pm. Starting from €11. Information and online booking available.

© Olivier Martin Gambier - Laurent Lachèvre. 


The Dining Spot Between Visits

Le restaurant Oscar à Giverny

After (or before) visiting the Museum of Impressionisms, discover Oscar, the new restaurant of chef David Gallienne, located within the museum itself. The winner of Top Chef 2020 draws inspiration from his grandmother's cuisine, offering an affordable menu that pays homage to Normandy's terroir. When booking, ask to be seated under the veranda with its vegetalized ceiling or on the terrace on sunny days to admire the museum's small garden.

At the table, opt for the lunch menu (starter/dessert + main course at €34 or starter + main course + dessert at €39), starting with an epic pâté en croûte (€13). A scandalous off-menu indulgence: the Camembert fondue (€10) to dip country bread into this cider-flavored cheese (did someone say #Foodporn?). Follow with a traditional and hearty veal blanquette that will delight Tonka bean lovers (€24), or the fish of the day served with a delicious spelt risotto and garnished with mussels and scallops (€24). For dessert, or at snack time, indulge in flambéed crepes Suzette (€15) or profiteroles generously covered in melted chocolate (€12).

Nota bene: On weekend evenings, Oscar turns into a festive restaurant. DJ sets, gypsy bands, or even drag queen shows: the evenings are eclectic and lively!

Oscar in the Museum of Impressionisms, 99 rue Claude Monet, Giverny. Open every day from late March to late October from 7 am to 2 pm and from 6 pm to 11 pm. Information and reservations available online.

© Aurelio Rodriguez Photographer.


Country Walks

Giverny is not just Monet's house! The village is also renowned for its magnificent landscapes and sublime typical Norman houses. Our advice? Get lost in the narrow streets of the town to enjoy its architecture. The village is small and remains accessible for walking. During your stroll, be sure to pass by the Sainte-Radegonde church of Giverny, a jewel of Romanesque style. It's also in the cemetery that Claude Monet is buried.

Several hiking trails are also accessible from the town hall to discover Giverny: the "Green Lizard Trail" and "Astragalus" allow you to walk through the woods, the plains of the town, and along the Seine. The promise? Bucolic walks right in Claude Monet's landscapes! Note: these trails are recommended for experienced hikers.

© Maison et Jardins Claude Monet Giverny - Droits réservés.

And also...

- Visit the Ancien Hôtel Baudy and its artist's studio where Cézanne, Renoir, Sisley, Rodin, and even Mary Cassatt passed by.

- Dine at the Jardin des Plumes to taste the Michelin-starred dishes of David Gallienne.

- Indulge in cakes on the rustic terrace of La Parenthèse.

- Have sweet dreams at the charming hotel O Plum’Art.


How to Get There?

As in the time of the impressionists, take a train from Saint-Lazare station. In 1 hour, you'll arrive at Vernon-Giverny station where you can take a taxi (€15 - €20) or a bus (approximately every 2 hours. €5 one way. Pay attention to rush hours to reach the center of Giverny. Walkers will appreciate the magnificent one-hour walk to reach Monet's house from the station.

Also discover our favorite spots for a trip to Deauville-Trouville and spa getaways within 2 hours of Paris.

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