Monet Gardens & Giverny Bike Tour
Join us on an unforgettable journey into the heart of French impressionism; Giverny! This tiny village located about 45 minutes northwest of Paris offers the perfect getaway from the hectic city streets. We’ll meet at our office (24 rue Edgar Faure, 75015) and take a private bus for the relaxing drive through the Normandy countryside. As you’re passing beautiful wheat and sunflower fields, your guide will begin to explain the history of impressionism and its founding father, Claude Monet.
Monet’s works have influenced artists for decades and you’ll have the opportunity to see his inspiration throughout the day. First stopping at the open-air market in Vernon, you’ll have some time to explore the various stalls and taste some local specialties. Your guide will point out the not-to-miss items and give you some basic French to then procure your very own picnic lunch!
Following the market, we’ll pick out our bikes and make our way across the Seine towards the Old Windmill, a beloved site by Monet that he captured in many of his paintings. During lunch, your guide will continue to provide you with information and anecdotes on Monet, impressionism, and the rise of it as a renowned art style in the late nineteenth century.
Equipped with the knowledge to appreciate it, you’ll cruise down a 5 kilometer/3 mile bike path to Monet’s homestead. Here, you’ll have free time to visit the brilliantly colored flowers lining every inch of the gardens’ pathways, the Japanese bridge and famous water lilies, and his house, left intact from when he last lived there. Imagine yourself strolling through one of his vibrant paintings as you stop to take in the hundreds of varieties of flowers growing along every pathway.
We encourage you to visit the town of Giverny after the gardens; you can see artists’ studios, quaint cafés, and the cemetery where Monet is buried. Towards the end of the afternoon, we’ll gather everyone together again and make our way back to Vernon, put the bikes away, and board the bus for a peaceful ride back to Paris.
If some members of your group are hesitant about biking, we also offer a walking tour of Monet’s gardens. You will be able to overlap with the walking group throughout several parts of your day including the market, lunch, and walking through Monet’s house and gardens. It’s a great way for groups of all abilities and ages to visit this beautiful destination together!