Paris has a lot to offer and it can actually be tough to drag yourself away, especially if you are on your first visit to the city. However, there are a number of equally wonderful day trips that you can take as part of a break from the hustle and bustle of the City of Lights.
Here is my pick for the top 5 day trips from Paris!
Also check out 5 Things You Can Do in Paris this Summer
Loire Valley Castles
Loire Valley is about 200 km south of Paris, and this is a day tour that you shouldn’t miss! The place is home to about 1000 chateaux (castles). Some are small and private, but some are huge and public. The most iconic ones are the Chenonceau Castle, Chateau de Cheverny and Chateau de Chambord, which give you an up-close look into the extravagant allure of the French aristocracy.
First, visit Chenonceau which is a model of the Renaissance traditions and an architectural masterpiece. You can then move on to Chambord, which is considered the largest and most majestic castle in Loire Valley. Lastly, go and admire Cheverny, the private castle of the Vibraye family. You can then top up your day trip with winetasting and lunch at Nitray, which is a privately owned castle and winery. Click here to discover some Loire Valley tours.
Giverny & Monet Gardens
Giverny is a charming village located at about 80 KM from Paris. This is where French impressionist Claude Monet moved, with an aim to develop his passions in painting, photography and gardening.
Here, you will get to wander through lush gardens and let the inspiration lift you. Enjoy the magnificent beauty and the tranquil environment created by the weeping willows and bamboo trees. Stop by the famous water lily pond and walk across the Japanese bridge that Monet liked to paint. Finally, head to explore his charming home, which sits on a large property made up of colorful gardens. Enjoy the scenery on your way back to Paris. Click here to discover some Giverny tours.
Reaching this wondrous place may be a long drive from Paris, but it’s totally worth your time. This small rocky island lets you fall under the spell of its landscape beauty. Before you reach Mont Saint-Michel, you can enjoy a stop at the traditional Norman village found nearby. Walk through its winding streets and climb its thin pathways to get the best views of the bay. You can then head to the day’s goal, Mont Saint Michel, which is one of the most amazing middle Ages creations, and discover its beauty and charm. Feel the fresh ocean breeze from the top and enjoy panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean before returning to Paris. Click here to discover some Mont Saint Michel tours.
Normandy & D-Day Beaches
Undertake a Paris to Normandy day trip, and travel through the pastoral Normandy countryside to the historic battlefields and landing beaches of the WWII that let you travel back to history. Explore the Omaha Beach, the Utah Museum and Pointe du Hoc. At the Utah Beach Museum, which is housed in an original German bunker, you’ll be able to see, 1 of the only 6 remaining B-26 bomber aircraft in the world. You can then pay your respects to fallen soldiers at the American Cemetery before heading back to Paris. Click here to discover some Normandy tours.
Reims and the Champagne Cellars
Reims is otherwise known as ‘the City of Champagne’. It is home to the best sparkling wine in the World. Before heading for your wine adventure, take a sightseeing tour of the city to enjoy its beauty. You can then head to the Champagne Cellars and learn the process of creating the wonder that is Champagne as well as the legends, traditions and culture behind it. There are a number of cellars that you can visit, but they all work the magic in roughly the same manner. After enjoying the cellars, you can then complete your tour with a visit to a vineyard, and then travel back to Paris. Click here to discover some Champagne cellars tours.
These day trips are a perfect way to enjoy Paris, and France in general. Make sure you enjoy various traditional cuisines and drinks, nature, culture and history along the way.