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Joanne Jan 22nd, 2000 04:13 PM

How To Get To Giverny From Paris
We will visit France in May and wonder if anyone can tell us how to get from Paris to Monet's garden at Giverny? What form of transportation would be best, how much does it cost, and frequency if known. Do you know what the tickets might cost and where would be the best place to get them. Would it be so crowded (touristy) at that time that we should go at a later time?

Bob Brown Jan 22nd, 2000 05:40 PM

When we were in Paris last September, we visited Giverny. To get there, we took the train from Gare St. Lazare to Vernon that left at 12:04. We returned on the train that left Vernon at 18:05. The round trip fare was 132 francs, which converts to about $20. We had no discount pass. The trip takes about 45 minutes each way. <BR> <BR>There is an earlier train that leaves Gare St. Lazare at 8:16, with a return from Vernon about 15:00. <BR>(There are some local trains, but they take about 90 minutes one way.) <BR> <BR>After we got to Vernon, we tried to take the local bus, but the crowd was so large that it quickly filled to capacity. So we shared a taxi ride with a Japanese couple. The taxi worked out fairly well, but we did have a thrill when the driver was late in returning to pick us up. We beat the train to the station by about 5 minutes. <BR>No problem!! <BR> <BR>If I were to do it again, I would take the earlier train at 8:16 and return earlier than 6 PM. That way you can get back to Paris for an afternoon event or activity and, possibly, you might be there before most people arrive. <BR> <BR>I think you will find Giverny popular any time you go. Monet's appeal is multi cultural and people from all over visit the house and gardens. <BR> <BR>There are tours from Paris to Giverny. <BR>But we opted for doing it on our own. <BR>That we way we had ample time to tour the gardens and take photographs. <BR>It was fun, and something of a challenge, given our highly limited French.

Diane Jan 22nd, 2000 05:42 PM

I was in Paris last May. Took the train from Gare St. Lazare to Vernon. From there we followed the crowd onto a bus which dropped us all off in front of Monet's home. If I were to do it over, I would have taken the short cab ride from the station instead of the bus to beat the crowd enough though the bus was non-stop. We had to wait in line 30 minutes with occasional drizzle before we could purchase a ticket. At that time we missed the 12:04 train because it took over 40 minutes to purchase our tickets and we missed it by only a few minutes. There were no signs in English at this station and it took us a while to figure out where we needed to be and then the line was extremely long and slow. We caught the next train at 14:25. Allow some time for this process. The round-trip ticket would have been $22 in 2nd class for a single, cost only $16 each when purchasing for two people. The 10-bus ride in Vernon was about $3 roundtrip. A ticket to Monet's home cost 35 francs and includes the gardens. It was 25 francs for visiting the gardens only. I bought the 35 francs ticket, but the line was so long to enter the house, that I skipped it as we had limited time. The gardens were beautiful and crowded. I don't know if it can be avoided, but maybe someone else on this board can recommend day/time when the crowds are lighter. Keep in mind, too, that the train runs on a different schedule on weekends and holidays.

Diane Jan 22nd, 2000 05:43 PM

Hey Bob, you beat me to a response by 2 minutes. I have to learn to type faster.

Diane Jan 22nd, 2000 05:49 PM

The 10-bus ride in Vernon should actually read the 10-minute bus ride. <BR> <BR>Also I forgot to mention that you might be interested in checking out the stalls in front of Printemps, a dept. store close to Gare St. Lazare. We bought some lovely silk scarves for 100 francs each.

Sally Jan 22nd, 2000 09:13 PM

We met a French lady and her English husband who had been to Giverny many times when we were in Venice last September. We followed their advice and got to the gardens 15 minutes before it opened so we were right at the front of the ticket line. Then we immediately went straight to the tunnel that goes to the lily pond and had about ten minutes there enjoying the beautiful and then peaceful view (the subject of so many of Monet's paintings) before anyone else got to that very popular part of the garden. We were able to take photos of the bridge and lily pond without the crowds. Then we went back to the main part of the garden- it is large enough so you don't feel as crowded and you can wander there as much as you want. We went into the house last- it was very crowded downstairs but not upstairs where you can get a good view of the garden.The gift shop is also very nice- a source of lots of reasonable Christmas presents.

Eileen Jan 23rd, 2000 07:28 AM

Hi, Joanne. I posted a reply to a similar question before. Please search for the topic entitled: How to "train" from Paris to Giverney. (take note of the way Giverny was spelled) <BR> <BR>I suggest you join a day-trip to Giverny which is offered by Paris Vision instead of going there on your own. <BR>

Boots Jan 23rd, 2000 07:41 AM

Check the website <BR>In October, three of us were met at the Vernon station by this charming woman (pictured on the website) and taken to Giverny where we rented the 2 Chevaux. At the end of our day, she took us back to the station in Vernon. The cost was 100 FF. She sold us tickets to Monet's garden and house for 25 FF each, a 10 FF discount, I believe. We not only spent a delightful two or three hours at Giverny, but drove to la Roche-Guyon for lunch in a lovely restaurant overlooking the Seine, toured the château there, drove to Vetheuil, and generally had a great day in the countryside that the Impressionists loved. The rental car was the best buy we had that trip and one I will repeat this year. 1999 was their first year in business, and I suspect the price will go up this year because it was an unbelievable bargain. We loved driving the car, but everyone may not. It is a bit "special." <BR>

greg Jan 23rd, 2000 03:30 PM

We were there last July and did exactly what Diane wished she had done: took a taxi. It was not that we knew that was what were should have done. After getting off the train (first one from Paris) and saw just how many people were heading to the bus stop, it was clear that we should take a taxi to beat at least this crowd. There were already lines but we did not have to wait more than 5 min to get in. Since we finished going thru the garden quickly, we were able to take a taxi back to the train station quickly to take a train going back to Paris just past noon since there were still many taxis coming to the garden from the station to carry people arriving late. Overall, we thought it worked out well even though we did not know beforehand how the timing works out with the crowd. We were behind some early bird bus tours, but ahead of most others.

dcordell Jan 23rd, 2000 09:06 PM

While you are at Monet's garden at Giverny, you may want to go next door to visit the American Museum. It's got work from many of the artists who visited or lived at Giverny during Monet's time. Excellent museum — and it's air conditioned.

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