Monet’s Gardens, Giverny: A day trip from Paris!

by | Aug 17, 2015 | France, Latest Posts

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Having fallen in love with Paris during our previous visits we decided it was time to venture outside the city on a recent summer jaunt and take a day trip from Paris to Giverny to visit Monet’s Garden. Monet’s Gardens are home to the artist’s house, the stunning flower gardens and the infamous water lily pond which Monet painted so often.

 

Monet’s Garden

Monet fell in love with Giverny when he caught a glimpse as his train passed by in 1883 and eventually lived there for 43 years. We could understand why as we left a little piece of our hearts in the breathtakingly beautiful gardens during our magical visit!

Monet's Gardens Giverny day trip Paris ©thewholeworldisaplayground

 

Day trip from Paris to Giverny

Tour: There are lots of half and full day tours available from Paris to Giverny depending on what you want to see and how much time you have – check prices here!

Click here to book a day trip to Giverny

 

 

Train: Take the train from Gare Saint-Lazare to Vernon and, from there, a bus leaves for Monet’s Garden in Giverny. The train takes approximately 45 minutes and the bus a further 15. It is also possible to get a taxi from the train station. Train schedules are available on the SNCF website.

Car: We drove from central Paris to Giverny and the journey took around 1 hour. Parking was available close to the entrance of Monet’s Gardens.

Monet’s Garden day trip tip: We purchased advance tickets to Monet’s Garden and this allowed us to skip the queue at the entrance. Advance tickets are valid for the whole season from March to November and are definitely worth it to skip the queue.

 

 

Best time to visit Monet’s Garden

Our first stop was the stunning flower garden in front of Monet’s House. According to the garden’s experts, the best time to visit is from April to October and our July visit was well timed to see the gardens at their best. We were in awe of the explosion of coloured flowers and greenery and the garden was amazing in full bloom.  Small paths line the flower beds allowing us to meander through the garden and get up close to the amazing colours and smells. Bliss!

Monet's Gardens Giverny day trip Paris ©thewholeworldisaplaygroundMonet preferred for the flowers and colours to merge freely rather than have a very organised garden and, for us, this added to the beauty:
Monet's Gardens Giverny day trip Paris ©thewholeworldisaplaygroundThe scent of lavender was fab throughout the gardens:Monet's Gardens Giverny day trip Paris ©thewholeworldisaplayground

 

Monet’s Garden Day Trip tip: Visit first thing in the morning or later in the day. We visited the Gardens late in the afternoon and, although it was crowded when we arrived, the crowds thinned out as closing time approached. As a result we didn’t have to queue to enter Monet’s house and even managed to capture some pictures without the crowds. Result!

 

The Water Lilies at Monet’s Garden

As stunning as the gardens are it was the water lilies and the Japanese bridge that had drawn us to Giverny. During our New York days we’d spend hours in the Met and MoMA where some of Monet’s most famous water lily prints are housed. Our Paris travels had taken us to Musee d’Orsay and Musee de l’Orangie which together hold an incredible collection of Monet’s water lily works. It was amazing to see the paintings brought to life as we stood in front of the water garden which had inspired them.

Excited! This way to the Water Lily pond!Monet's Gardens Giverny day trip Paris ©thewholeworldisaplaygroundJuly and August are water lily season in Giverny and our July visit saw the water lilies approaching full bloom:Monet's Gardens Giverny day trip Paris ©thewholeworldisaplaygroundSo pretty!Monet's Gardens Giverny day trip Paris ©thewholeworldisaplaygroundThe pond is surrounded by a river meandering throughout the water gardens:Monet's Gardens Giverny day trip Paris ©thewholeworldisaplayground

 

The Japanese Bridge at Monet’s Garden

Monet was a huge collector of Japanese prints and their influence is immediately obvious in the water gardens, none more so than at the famous Japanese bridge. The green bridge, surrounded by weeping willows and bright flowers, is one of the most beautiful places in the gardens and it’s easy to imagine Monet spending his days there.

Picture perfect!
Monet's Gardens Giverny day trip Paris ©thewholeworldisaplaygroundThe iconic Japanese bridge is an absolute highlight of Monet’s gardens!
Monet's Gardens Giverny day trip Paris ©thewholeworldisaplaygroundI spy the Japanese Bridge!Monet's Gardens Giverny day trip Paris ©thewholeworldisaplayground

 

Monet’s House

Monet lived in his Giverny house until his death in 1926 and the furniture is exactly the same as it was then although the paintings are reproductions. The house consists of his bedroom, that of his wife Alice, a sitting room, a pantry, Monet’s first studio, his kitchen and a dining room. Monet chose all the colours in the house and the bright mix of yellows and blues are a fantastic reflection of his colourful tastes.

We’d arrived at the gardens late in the afternoon and it was almost closing time when we were ready to visit Monet’s House. The crowds had lessened considerably and there was no longer a queue for the house which was good news for us!

The pink and green house:Monet's Gardens Giverny day trip Paris ©thewholeworldisaplaygroundMonet’s bedroom. His wife, Alice, had her own bedroom next door as was standard in those times:Monet's Gardens Giverny day trip Paris ©thewholeworldisaplaygroundThe incredible view of the gardens from the house:Monet's Gardens Giverny day trip Paris ©thewholeworldisaplaygroundMy dream! Monet’s fantastic yellow dining room:Monet's Gardens Giverny day trip Paris ©thewholeworldisaplaygroundThe awesome copper pots in the kitchen:Monet's Gardens Giverny day trip Paris ©thewholeworldisaplayground

This room was Monet’s first studio and later became his smoking room:Monet's Gardens Giverny day trip Paris ©thewholeworldisaplaygroundClaude and Alice Monet:Monet's Gardens Giverny day trip Paris ©thewholeworldisaplayground

 

Overall

Monet’s Garden is one of the most beautiful places we’ve visited and really brought Monet’s paintings to life. We had an amazing afternoon exploring the gardens, the house and the water lily pond and were blown away with the breathtaking beauty of our surroundings. For us, it was totally worth the trip from Paris and we made our way back to the city with amazing memories of the house and gardens which provided Monet with such incredible inspiration.
Monet's Gardens Giverny day trip Paris ©thewholeworldisaplayground

 

Monet and Giverny

Monet lived in Giverny for 43 years until his death in 1926. He moved there with his wife Alice and their children and transformed the surrounding land. He planted an orchard, diverted a river to create the water gardens and built the Japanese bridge surrounded by willows and bamboo. The brightly coloured chaotic gardens are easily identifiable with Monet’s work and over 500,000 visitors make the trip to the gardens every year.

Monet's Gardens Giverny day trip Paris ©thewholeworldisaplayground

 

 

10 Comments

  1. Donna

    Stunning pictures!

    Reply
    • Elaine

      It was such a beautiful place Donna!

      Reply
  2. Zara

    What a wonderful place to visit. Your photos are stunning

    Reply
    • Elaine

      Thank you so much Zara! It was such a treat and we’ve wanted to visit for so long!

      Reply
  3. Angela

    Your photos and write up on Monet’s garden is precise with complimentary photos. I feel that I have been there already without visiting Giverny. Is it worth visiting at this time in January???

    Reply
    • Elaine

      Hi Angela, glad you enjoyed the post! As far as we know Monet’s Gardens are closed from November to March so January wouldn’t work.

      Elaine

      Reply
  4. mari

    Beautiful, but was it allowed to take pics inside in the house? Thought it was only ok to take photos from the bedroom window..

    Reply
    • Elaine McArdle

      Hi Mari, there weren’t any rules around taking pictures inside the house when we visited. I’ve seen lots online so don’t think we missed any signs stating otherwise.

      Elaine

      Reply
  5. CarolLynne

    Absolutely loved your pictures and captions! Planning a trip in late June and cant wait to see all of this in person. I have been enamored with Monet’s water lilies for quite some time. An artist friend of ours painted our bathroom with the water Lilly motif and it is absolutely stunning. I am am amateur photographer, so this will be a trip of a lifetime. Thanks so much for your post!

    Reply
    • Elaine

      Have an amazing time Carol, visiting the gardens really is a wonderful experience. I hope you enjoy as much as we did.

      Elaine

      Reply

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