Get the most out of Giverny for an artistic brush with nature
David travelled to Giverny with Shearings Holidays (0344 874 8220; shearings. com) who offer a five-day Paris, Versailles and Monet’s Garden coach tour on selected dates April to October 2019. Prices from £419pp based on two sharing, including four nights half board at the Novotel Cergy Pontoise hotel, coach travel, return Eurotunnel crossing and a full-day excursion to the Palace of Versailles and Monet’s Garden with entry fee included. By car, follow the A13 from Paris, exit 14 VernonGiverny. By rail, SNCF line Paris Saint Lazare-rouen to Vernon-giverny.
Two options for shuttling between Giverny and the nearest train station. The little train (givernon.fr/; €8 return) trundles the 3km route in 20 minutes. The shuttle bus (sngo.fr/fr/ horaires-timetables/79; €10 return) offers air conditioning and free Wifi en route. Both run end March to November.
WHERE TO STAY Les Rouges Gorges
6 Rue aux Juifs 27620 Giverny Tel: (Fr) 2 32 51 02 96 lesrougesgorges.com Three rustic chambre d’hôtes and gîte-style options located close to the centre of Giverny to explore the village after the coach parties have departed. Garden studio from €90 per night, family house from €150 per night (sleeps four), including breakfast.
1 Avenue Pierre Mendès France 27200 Vernon Tel: (Fr) 2 32 51 97 97 normandy-hotel.fr/en/ This is a simple but homely three-star hotel for an overnight stay in Vernon, hence ideal for onward rail connections. The associated bistro, Le Cottage, offers evening meals. Doubles from €105 per night, including breakfast.
WHERE TO EAT Hotel Baudy
81 Rue Claude Monet 27620 Giverny Tel: (Fr) 2 32 21 10 03 restaurantbaudy.com The historic hotel and restaurant became the artistic hub of village life after opening in 1887 and hosted many dinners between Monet and his confidante President Clemenceau. Today there’s a bustling restaurant plus exhibitions and art events. Open March to November; set menu €29.90.
Cocottes & Bouchons
71 Rue Carnot 27200 Vernon Tel: (Fr) 2 32 64 10 44 cocotteetbouchonvernon.fr Vernon doesn’t have a huge array of places for dining out but this restaurant is recommended by the local tourist office for its honest cuisine with a local flavour. Open Tuesday to Saturday and Sunday lunchtime; set menu from €20.
WHERE TO VISIT Musée de Vernon
12 Rue du Pont 27200 Vernon Tel: (Fr) 2 32 21 28 09 This small museum is home to the two works by Monet exhibited closest to Giverny, including Falaise à Pourville (1896), plus works by Monet’s step-daughter Blanche Hoschedé Monet.
Musée des Impressionnismes
99 Rue Claude Monet 27620 Giverny Tel: (Fr) 2 32 51 94 65 mdig.fr/en A modernist museum devoted to Monet’s legacy and influence on the next-generation artists who followed him to the Seine Valley. Open end March to 1 November; adult/child €7.50/3.50.