Auvers-sur-oise and Giverny

Mar 4th, 2002, 05:48 AM
  #1  
Lea
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Auvers-sur-oise and Giverny

Hello Fellow Fodorites!

My sisters and I will be headed to Paris at the end of the week. Since we have been there before, we would like to take a day trip to Auvers-sur-Oise and to Giverny. Could somebody please let me know if hitting these two sites is feasible and more importantly what's the best way to do it? I speak French proficiently so I think we can handle taking the train since the tours we've researched are a bit expenseive. Any insight would be greatly appreciated. Thanks very much!
 
Mar 4th, 2002, 09:52 AM
  #2  
Betty
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You can check train schedules at www.voyages-sncf.com I've looked at some for you and found that it's easy to get from Paris to Auvers-sur-Oise. You would take the "train de banlieue" at the Gare du Nord and be in Auvers a little over an hour later. It requires one fairly quick change at Valmondois. Paris to Vernon (you can get a bus or taxi from there to Giverny) is even easier. Gare St. Lazare to Vernon, no changes, takes about 45 minutes. It gets more problematical to get from Auvers to Vernon. The SNCF site would not even give me a schedule, saying that it required more than 2 changes. It seems that it would probably be easier and quicker to do round trips (Paris-Auvers and Paris-Vernon)and that would be difficult to do the same day. So it would be better to do the trips on two different days. OR...
If I were you I would look into doing a one-day car rental. Since there are at least three of you, (You said you were traveling with your sisters) it might well be less or at least no more expensive than the train. You could pick it up and drop it off somewhere on the outskirts of Paris (CDG? Versailles?) and use the RER to get out and back into Paris. You can get driving directions from www.viamichelin.com A car would give you a lot more freedom so that you could perhaps see both places the same day. You might want to play around a bit more with the SNCF site (I didn't know your dates, so that could make a difference) and compare prices.
I hope this helps some and I wish you and your sisters and wonderful trip to Paris.
 
Mar 4th, 2002, 12:08 PM
  #3  
Beth
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Four of us (painters) went to Auvers last August and loved it. We took the train from Gard de Nord, changing at Pointoise for a short trip to Auvers. There are signs all through the town at the various sites Van Gogh painted. On the way into town towards the tourist center, there is a small garden with a marvelous sculpture of him. We paid to see the room where he died (just a bare room really) but the short video prior to the tour was worth the fee. We did not eat in the restaurant attached to this site because lunch was about $32 which was a bit steep for us. We walked the path past the church, up the hill to the cemetery where Vincent and his brother are buried, and took the back path through the cornfields into town again (all marked on the map you can pick up at the Tourist Center). We also went to the Impressionaist exhibit at the mansion - pretty much a duplicate of what we knew, but if you aren't an artist, some of it may be new. It was fun, just not overwhelming. We also paid for a quick visit to a very small but interesting private musuem on absinthe, the now-outlawed liquor. We missed Dr. Cachet's house a bit farther along the road because the temperature was mid-90s, and we were exhausted. We had picked up a bus schedule at the tourist shop and took the bus back to Pointoise which went through a few nice back towns. We spoke no French and no one on the bus had any English so it was constant watching out the window to make sure we didn't go too far. Auvers is a real town despite all the Van Gogh hype. Givery was different; much more commercial, but how could artists miss it. We were delighted by the American Impressionist Museum down the road and its good restaurant which others seemed not to have noticed. If we had more time, we would have roamed more, but we only had time for the house, gardens, the museum, lunch and a quick trip through the gift shop. If I had to pick between them, I would do Auvers.
 
Mar 4th, 2002, 12:09 PM
  #4  
Fred
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For Giverny take the train from Gare St. Lazare to the town of Vernon ($26 round trip), then take a cab ($12) or bus to his house. The train trip takes anywhere from 50 minutes to 1 hr 35 minutes depending on the train. Paris Visions has a tour - costs about $61 and takes about 4 1/2 hours. The gardens are unbelieveable and you get to see all those water lilies he painted and his house and famous kitchen. Open April-Oct. Closed on Mondays. Well worth going. Tel:011-33-2-32-51-28-21. Also plan to visit the Impressionist Museum across the road and to the left a bit.

For Auvers, take the train from Gare St Lazare to Pontoise, then switch to the train to Auvers-sur-Oise - a total of about an hour.
For more Paris information e-mail me: [email protected]
 
Mar 4th, 2002, 01:01 PM
  #5  
Christina
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I've been to both, and the easiest route to Auvers is to take the RER line C to Pontoise, rather than a regular SNCF train. You can get on the RER C line at any stop--I did it from Invalides. At Pontoise, you transfer to a local suburban train line to Auvers. They aren't that frequent, I had to wait maybe 30-45 min. The total trip takes longer than an hour, especially considering transfer time.

For Auvers, yOu should get a special RER ticket at the ticket window that covers both the RER RT and free or reduced admission to the chateau (maybe something else, I forget). It was a real bargain and is a promotion for tourism--just tell them you want to go to Auvers-sur-Oise and you'll get a ticket and special little packet with a pass for the chateau. There is a good web site that tells you all about the place and has maps and walking tours. I used them to plan and go directly to the tourist office once I get into Auvers (www.auvers-sur-oise.com). I saw most things, it's a nice little town to walk around, and the multimedia presentation at the chateau on Impressionist era was quite good--the French do those things pretty well, actually. It was very good, not hokey at all.
 
Mar 4th, 2002, 09:44 PM
  #6  
Sue
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Christina, I am planning to do this my next visit, but when I do an itinerary on the RATP site, this is what it says.






PRENEZ LE RER C A INVALIDES A 08H53 DIRECTION PONTOISE JUSQU'A SAINT-OUEN-L'AUMONE A 09H51
PRENEZ LE TRAIN SNCF A SAINT-OUEN-L'AUMONE A 10H25 DIRECTION PERSAN BEAUMONT JUSQU'A AUVERS-SUR-OISE A 10H36
VOUS METTREZ ENVIRON 1 HEURE 3/4

Does that make sense?
 
Mar 5th, 2002, 11:51 AM
  #7  
Christina
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<<PRENEZ LE RER C A INVALIDES A 08H53 DIRECTION PONTOISE JUSQU'A SAINT-OUEN-L'AUMONE A 09H51
PRENEZ LE TRAIN SNCF A SAINT-OUEN-L'AUMONE A 10H25 DIRECTION PERSAN BEAUMONT JUSQU'A AUVERS-SUR-OISE A 10H36
VOUS METTREZ ENVIRON 1 HEURE 3/4>>
hmm... that probably explains why I went from Invalides, you do have to be sure you take the right line as line C goes all over, some trains going south and others north. Translation:

<<Take Line C at Invalides at 8:53, direction Pontoise, until Saint-Ouen L'Aumone; take the 10:25 SNCF train at Saint-Ouen (direction Persan Beaumont) until Auvers-sur-Oise at 10:36. You'll take about 1-3/4 hrs doing this.>>

Maybe you knew the French, but yep, that sounds exactly like what I did. Maybe I got my directions the same place you did. If you look at the RER map with this line on it to Auvers (http://www.ratp.fr/ParisVisite/Image...eaux/zones.pdf), you'll see the route going across the top to Auvers (blue line) starts in Pontoise and then splits off at Aumone. It's the same train, you can wait for it at Aumone or get it at Pontoise.

I don't remember exactly what I did, but I know I had that map on me and maybe those directions -- I think I got off at Aumone going to Auvers as those were the instructions and I didn't want to blow it, but that I went all the way to Pontoise on the return trip as I knew the RER left from there and I thought I might get a better seat or something; that's where the train back into town originates. There are a couple choices of RER trains back in from there, you can go either Invalides direction or to Gare du Nord. However, the line that goes to Gare du Nord (or from, I suppose) is not an RER line, it's a suburban SNCF line, just like the line going from Pontoise to Auvers and beyond is not in the RER zones (that map has an asterisk that says that).

All I know is I got my ticket at Invalides and it was an all-inclusive RT ticket that worked for the RER and the sub. train from Pontoise to Auvers, and it included a pass for the chateau also, all at a reduced tourism fare for that day trip. It wasn't that expensive, I think the special fare meant you got the chateau pass about free or something.
 
Mar 5th, 2002, 12:12 PM
  #8  
greg
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To Giverny.. I am presuming you are planning to visit Monet's Gargen?
According to their web site, the garden will not be open yet this weekend when you will be there...

http://www.fondation-monet.com/franc...que/index.html
 
Mar 5th, 2002, 12:19 PM
  #9  
Patrick
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I second the idea of renting a car. Four of us did it for the day, getting a car from Avis right next to St. Sulpice. It was an easy drive out, especially early in the morning. Arrived at Giverny in time for morning pastries and coffee right across the street from the house and gardens before they opened. We were also able to have lunch in Honfleur and stop in a couple of other towns including Pont-Audemer and visit some of the coast. It was a wonderful day and much easier than the first time I went by train to Vernon. I felt that we accomplished and enjoyed so much more than to have been bound by public transportaion.
 
Mar 5th, 2002, 07:53 PM
  #10  
Sue
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Sorry for the confusion, Christina, I do speak French; it was just the getting-off place didn't sound like your directions.

So if I understand you, you can go clear to Pontoise if you want to (or miss your stop at Aumone) and still get the train.

Thanks for the info.
 

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