Day trips from Paris

Old Apr 22nd, 2000, 02:24 PM
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Day trips from Paris

I am looking for recommendations for day trips via rail from Paris from Parisans or recent travellers. I understand that the storms from last year has caused severe damage to many of the day trip sites.

Thanks in Advance.
Old Apr 22nd, 2000, 04:46 PM
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You might check to see if there is news about Versailles - there were a lot of downed trees, but by now they have probably repaired any damage to the palace or Trianons. We went to Chartres in October for most of a day, but don't remember hearing if the cathedral suffered any damage (most likely not enough to keep you from visiting).
Old Apr 22nd, 2000, 04:51 PM
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There is no damage to Chartres; I definitely recommend this trip (search for posts re Malcolm Miller tours). My understanding is that the downed trees at Versailles do not hinder the experience at all.
Old Apr 22nd, 2000, 07:11 PM
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I second the vote for Chartres it is wonderful. Take both the 12 and 2:45 Malcom Miller tours of the Cathedral (just show up out side the gift shop). Walk around the town which is lovely. Many people will say its a half day but we could have stayed a couple of days easily. Have agreat trip!!
Old Apr 24th, 2000, 03:40 PM
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Just got back from Paris and did day trips to both Versailles and Chartres. They are doing lots of work on the woodsy areas and the "village" on the grounds and the at the former, but the formal gardens are in perfect condition, as is the main palace. Although the schedule said they would be open, neither the Grand nor the Petit Trianon were open, so if this is important to you, call the day you plan to go.

Chartres is well worth at least a half day. The cathedral is stunning, and the town is full of charm. Malcolm Miller's tour was not held becuase there were too few people the afternoon I was there; the audiotour is not the same thing, but still helpful in understanding and appreciating all those beautiful stained-glass windows.
Old Apr 25th, 2000, 02:33 PM
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Versailles and Chartres are definite dos. Giverny is also a great visit. You can even visit Epernay and a Champagne vineyard in a day. Rouen is another good daytrip.

Or (and I will do it this fall at least once) get on a train (RER or grande ligne) and ride for an hour or two and get off at a town with a cool name (works only with a pass of some sort), then get on another train and do it again.
Old Apr 25th, 2000, 03:29 PM
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It would help if you gave your interests and trip time limits, as I think that makes a big difference. In any case, my day trip limits are very liberal as I usually stay in cities for a long time and don't mind riding on the train, just looking at the countryside in a country. So, my limits are two hours one way. With that and the TGV lines, you can go a lot of places in France. For a two-hr trip, I can be there by 10-11 am, spend all day looking around, even having a lunch or light supper and be back in Paris by 6-9 pm. Some day trips I have particularly enjoyed other than the ones already mentioned are: Angers, Blois, Chantilly, Lyon, Moret-sur-Loing, and Auxerre. Yes, Lyon makes a very good day trip (2 hrs by TGV) if you don't think you'll get in that part of the country otherwise. Angers is west in Brittany and only 1-1/2 hrs by TGV, it has tapesty, medieval chateau, etc. Auxerre is only reachable by slow train (takes 2 hrs) but is a sleepy small French town but a lot of interesting architectural and historical buidlings, like the Abbey of St-Germain with a crypt with frescoes on the wall from around 11th Century, something I haven't seen elsewhere. You can also go to Reims or Dijon in a day and if you don't want to go far, you can do St-Germain-en-Laye by RER. Actually, just as close, even St-Denis is a good day trip, a lot of tourists don't get up there.

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