Going Out

Beyond the City Limits: Our Top Picks for Day Trips From Paris

Likes to travel and loves to eat even more. Always happy to explore!

Paris, the city of light, is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful cities in the world, but if you’re looking to explore beyond the city’s limits, there’s so much more to discover. France has a wealth of natural and cultural treasures easily accessible from Paris. There’s something for everyone, from historical landmarks to charming countryside small towns. In this blog, we have curated a list of must-see day trips from Paris that will leave you spellbound.

So pack your bags, put on your walking shoes, and prepare for an unforgettable adventure!

1. Day Trips from Paris, France

Versailles

With its stunning palace, beautiful garden picnic, and rich history, Versailles is a must-see day trips from Paris destination. Visitors can explore the grandeur of the Palace of Versailles, once home to French kings and queens. The palace’s Hall of Mirrors boasts breathtaking chandeliers and mirrors, while the Grand Trianon and Petit Trianon served as royal retreats. The picturesque gardens are also worth a visit, with thousands of fountains and sculptures spread across 800 hectares of land.

For those seeking an unforgettable experience, don’t miss the Musical Fountains Show, which showcases water lilies features synchronized to classical music.

During the summer, visitors can also enjoy musical fountain shows that provide an unforgettable experience amidst the garden’s serenity. The evening light shows create a magical atmosphere as fireworks illuminate the sky above.

Insider Tip: Plan your visit to avoid long lines and crowds by booking tickets or visiting during off-peak hours. The TGV train is a convenient way to reach Versailles from Paris, with a travel time of only 30 minutes.

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One Day in Disneyland Paris

One day in Disneyland Paris is a must-do experience for all Disney fans visiting Paris. The park has two parks- Disneyland Park and Walt Disney Studios Park, both of which offer a variety of attractions and shows. One day may not be enough to explore everything, but it is possible to enjoy the highlights of both parks with careful planning.

To make the most of your day at Disneyland Paris, consider purchasing a FastPass or VIP Pass to skip the lines and maximize your time on the attractions. Additionally, be sure to take advantage of the dining options available within the parks, as they offer a variety of delicious meals and snacks to fuel your adventure.

Some popular rides include Space Mountain: Mission 2, Pirates of the Caribbean, and Big Thunder Mountain Railroad. The park also offers plenty of dining options and themed merchandise stores for souvenirs.

Normandy

If you’re looking for a destination that exudes history and culture, Normandy is the perfect day trips from Paris. This region is known for its rich heritage, delicious cuisine, and picturesque landscapes. While there are endless options for exploration in Normandy, some must-see attractions include the D-Day landing beaches, Mont Saint-Michel Abbey and surroundings, and the Bayeux Tapestry.

Outdoor enthusiasts can hike along Etretat’s cliffs or cycle through charming countryside old town like Honfleur. Whether interested in history, food, art, or nature, Normandy has something for everyone including the beautiful region of Brittany nearby, which is just a few hundred km away. So why not add it to your itinerary and explore this delightful region?

Visit the Bayeux Tapestry

The Bayeux Tapestry is a must-see attraction for those interested in history and art. This 900-year-old tapestry depicts the Norman Conquest of England in 1066, with intricate details that capture the event’s significance. As one of the world’s most famous tapestries, it measures almost 230 feet long and is housed at the Centre Guillaume le Conquérant Museum in Bayeux.

Visitors can get up close to the tapestry, marvel at its breathtaking design and learn about its historical relevance to French and English history. While exploring the town of Bayeux, visitors can also discover other historical sites and enjoy a charming French atmosphere.

Savor Seafood in Honfleur

Honfleur is a picture-perfect coastal town in Normandy known for its delicious seafood cuisine. If you love seafood, this charming town is worth a day trips from Paris. Honfleur boasts impressive dining options, with many restaurants along the harbor offering fresh seafood dishes. Oysters, mussels, scallops, and other seafood delicacies are prepared and served with breathtaking views of the gorgeous harbor.

Besides its culinary offerings, Honfleur has much more to offer visitors. The town itself is steeped in history and has a thriving art scene. Many art galleries and museums showcase the works of local artists, which are well worth exploring. Whether it’s the delicious seafood or the charming surroundings that have drawn you to Honfleur, this hidden gem should be on your list of must-visit destinations from Paris.

Additionally, Honfleur is located near the beautiful Rhône River, providing visitors with stunning views and opportunities for outdoor activities.

Giverny

Visit Giverny, Claude Monet garden and house - Normandy Tourism, France

Nestled in the heart of Normandy lies the picturesque village of Giverny, famous for its stunning gardens and as the former home of the legendary impressionist painter Claude Monet. A visit to Giverny is a perfect day trips from Paris for those who love art and nature. Touring Monet’s house, visitors can glimpse the personal life of one of history’s greatest painters and view his impressive Japanese art and antique furniture collection.

The gardens are divided into two parts: the flower garden, which features a vibrant array of blooms, and the water garden, with its iconic lily pond. Strolling through these gardens will be like walking through an artist’s canvas brought to life. Don’t forget to visit other artists’ works in the nearby Museum of Impressionism to experience more of Giverny’s offerings.

Tour Monet’s House and Gardens in Giverny

Giverny is a charming and idyllic village just an hour’s drive from Paris. It’s famous for being the home of renowned artist Claude Monet, who lived there for over 40 years. Visitors can tour Monet’s house and gardens, which served as inspiration for many of his iconic paintings. The parks include a Japanese-inspired water garden with a bridge, a lily pond, and a colorful flower garden.

Walking through the gardens offers a unique opportunity to step into Monet’s world and admire his creative genius up close. With its serene atmosphere, Giverny is the perfect destination for nature lovers and art enthusiasts alike. Apart from the beautiful gardens, Giverny has several restaurants and cafés where visitors can relax and enjoy the local cuisine. All in all, visiting Giverny is an unforgettable experience that provides insight into one of history’s most celebrated artists while enjoying a peaceful day trips from Paris.

Gare de l’est is the nearest train station to Giverny, making it easily accessible for tourists.

Discover Other Artists in Giverny Museum of Impressionism

Giverny Museum of Impressionism GIVERNY : Normandy Tourism

Aside from Claude Monet, Giverny is also home to other notable artists who were part of the Impressionist movement. Visitors can explore the nearby Museum of Impressionism and learn about the works of these artists. The museum hosts a collection of paintings, sculptures, and photographs that showcase the diversity and beauty of this genre. Apart from permanent exhibits, temporary exhibitions feature works by contemporary and emerging artists. The museum also offers workshops for children and adults throughout the year, making it an excellent destination for art enthusiasts.

Giverny is not just a village that inspired Monet’s art but also served as a hub for many other Impressionist artists. The Museum of Impressionism provides visitors a unique glimpse into this artistic movement and a chance to experience different art forms besides Monet’s work. With its diverse collection and ever-changing exhibitions, the museum is worth a visit on your day trips from Paris to Giverny.

Loire Valley

The Loire Valley is a must-visit destination for those who want to delve deeper into the history and culture of France. The region is renowned for its stunning chateaux, beautiful gardens, and delicious wines. Visitors can explore the opulent architecture and art in the chateaux, such as the breathtaking Chateau de Chenonceau and the grand Chateau de Chambord. Wine lovers can indulge in some of the region’s famous wines while enjoying scenic views of the vineyards.

Outdoor enthusiasts can bike, hike through the region’s picturesque countryside, or even take a hot air balloon ride to see it from above. From history to nature to gastronomy, the Loire Valley offers something for everyone.

Admire Château de Chambord Castle

Château de Chambord Castle

Nestled in the heart of the Loire Valley, Château de Chambord is a magnificent castle that will take your breath away. Built in the 16th century by King Francis I, the court is a remarkable example of French Renaissance and medieval architecture. However, the castle’s most striking feature is its double helix staircase, designed by Leonardo da Vinci. This unique design allows two people to ascend or descend simultaneously without crossing paths.

Visitors to Château de Chambord can explore various rooms and galleries within the castle, each with its unique style and decor. From the Royal Apartments’ grandeur to the Chapel’s intimate charm, this incredible attraction has something for everyone. And with plenty of outdoor activities available nearby, including hiking and cycling routes through the surrounding parklands and forests, you can easily make a day trips from Paris your visit to Château de Chambord.

Sip Wine in the Loire Valley, Tastings

The Loire Valley is famous for its stunning chateaux, picturesque countryside, and, of course, its wine. As one of France’s most important wine regions, the Loire Valley offers visitors a chance to explore vineyards and wineries while sampling some of the best wines in France. Guided tours through the vineyards allow wine enthusiasts to learn about winemaking. The region features a variety of white, red, and rosé wines that will satisfy any palette. Do not miss exploring charming towns like Amboise and Chinon while you’re in the area. The Loire Valley’s reputation as a food destination makes it a must-visit location for tourists looking for authentic French cuisine.

The region is also home to many great restaurants and markets where you can taste local specialties like goat cheese, mushrooms, and charcuterie. Whether looking for a romantic getaway or an adventure trip with small group friends, the Loire Valley offers something unique and special for everyone.

See Leonardo da Vinci’s Home in Clos Lucé

Visiting Clos Lucé, the final home of Leonardo da Vinci, is a must-do day trips from Paris. The house and gardens offer a glimpse into the last years of the famous artist’s life and showcase replicas of his inventions. Amboise, where Clos Lucé is located, offers other attractions such as Château d’Amboise and Pagode de Chanteloup, Louis xiv. Immerse yourself in the beauty of the Loire Valley’s countryside while exploring charming towns like Amboise and Chinon.

With its historic castles, stunning scenery, and delicious local specialties, a Paris day trips to the Loire Valley is an experience you won’t forget. Don’t miss out on seeing Leonardo da Vinci’s home and enjoying all that this picturesque region offers.

Champagne Region

A Wine Lover's Guide to Visiting Champagne France • Winetraveler

The Champagne region is a must-visit day trip destination for wine enthusiasts and history buffs. Located just a short train ride from Paris, this region is famous for its sparkling wine, produced using traditional methods passed down through generations of winemakers. Visitors can tour the vineyards, learn about the winemaking process, and sample some of the world’s best champagne. Not only that, but the region is also home to historic cities such as Reims and Epernay, where visitors can explore cathedrals, museums, and charming streets.

Other attractions in the Champagne region include hot air balloon rides and hiking trails with stunning countryside views. Visiting the Champagne region is an excellent way to experience French culture while indulging in some of its most exquisite offerings.

Savor Champagne Tasting in the Region

France’s Champagne region is a must-visit for wine enthusiasts, offering a unique opportunity to sample some of the world’s finest sparkling wines. Among the most famous champagne houses are Moët & Chandon and Veuve Clicquot, which offer tastings alongside tours of their vineyards. Guests can enjoy food pairings and hot air balloon rides over the stunning countryside. Beyond champagne, visitors can explore the historic cities of Reims and Epernay, which feature magnificent cathedrals, museums, and charming streets. The region also offers hiking trails with breathtaking views of the vineyards and surrounding area. Whether you’re a seasoned connoisseur or just looking for a fun day trip from Paris, the Champagne region has something to offer everyone.

Visit the Gothic Cathedral of Reims

Notre-Dame de Reims Cathedral, major Gothic art

The Gothic Cathedral of Reims is a must-visit historical landmark in the Champagne region. This iconic cathedral, built in the 13th century, boasts striking stained glass windows and is steeped in history as it was the coronation site for many French kings. A tour of the cathedral provides insight into its significance and offers a glimpse into the rich history of France.

In addition to its cultural and historical importance, visitors can enjoy stunning views of the picturesque countryside and vineyards. Overall, a trip to the Gothic Cathedral of Reims is an enriching day trips from Paris that offers cultural and natural beauty.

Mont Saint-Michel

Nestled off the coast of Normandy lies one of France’s most iconic landmarks, Mont Saint-Michel. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is a must-visit destination for history buffs and nature enthusiasts. The island’s medieval abbey boasts stunning Gothic architecture and offers breathtaking views of the surrounding bay. Visitors can also explore the charming shops selling local products and indulge in delicious seafood at the island’s many restaurants. Planning and booking tickets in advance are essential to avoid crowds during peak season, but a trip to Mont Saint-Michel Napoleon promises unforgettable day trips from Paris.

Explore Mont Saint-Michel Abbey and Surroundings

For history and architecture enthusiasts, exploring the Mont Saint-Michel Abbey and its surroundings is a must-see day trip from Paris. This UNESCO World Heritage Site, located on a small island off the coast of Normandy, has been a place of pilgrimage for centuries. Visitors can explore the abbey’s impressive Gothic-style church and cloisters, marvel at the intricate architecture and learn about its rich history.

Beyond the abbey, visitors can also enjoy the charming shops and restaurants in the surrounding town or take in the stunning views of the bay. During low tide, walking across the causeway is the best things to reach the island and appreciate its unique beauty up close. With so much to see and experience, exploring Mont Saint-Michel Abbey and its surroundings is an unforgettable journey into France’s rich cultural heritage.

Discover Museums in Maison de la Baie Centre d’Interprétation

When visiting Mont Saint-Michel, check out Maison de la Baie Centre d’Interprétation. This fascinating museum provides insight into the history and ecology of this unique island. With interactive exhibits showcasing the diverse ecosystem and wildlife, visitors can learn about the area’s rich history as a strategic fortification and religious pilgrimage site. In addition to exploring the museum, take some time to admire the stunning architecture and natural beauty of Mont Saint-Michel, including its famous abbey and surrounding tidal flats. From medieval monks to modern-day tour, there’s always something new to discover at this enchanting UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Fontainebleau

Fontainebleau

Fontainebleau is a charming historic town just an hour from Paris, known for its beautiful palace and gardens. The Fontainebleau Palace has been a residence for French monarchs for centuries, showcasing various architectural styles. The palace’s opulent halls, parks, and courtyards are open to visitors to explore. The Fontainebleau Forest is another attraction in the area, offering hiking trails, rock climbing spots, and mountain biking routes.

Visiting the Rosa Bonheur Museum is also highly recommended while in Fontainebleau. This museum showcases works by the famous 19th-century painter Rosa Bonheur and her contemporaries. Additionally, it provides insights into the life of women artists during that era. Nature lovers will appreciate the splendid forested park behind the museum, where you can enjoy a peaceful stroll amidst towering trees.

Discover Fontainebleau Castles and Forest

Fontainebleau Castle and Forest is a perfect day trips from Paris destination for history lovers and outdoor enthusiasts. The castle dates back to the 12th century and has been home to French monarchs for centuries. It boasts opulent interiors, beautiful gardens, and sprawling grounds that showcase various architectural styles. Visitors can explore the enchanting Fontainebleau Forest, which spans over 100 square miles and features hiking trails, rock climbing sites, and picturesque lakes.

The Fontainebleau Castle and Forest are not just any other tourist hotspot but an opportunity to delve into France’s rich history surrounded by natural beauty. It is an ideal place for those who want to escape the hustle-bustle of Paris and spend some time in serene surroundings.

Visit Rosa Bonheur Caen Museum

Located in the heart of Fontainebleau, the Rosa Bonheur Museum is a must-visit for art lovers and history enthusiasts alike. This museum showcases the works of renowned French artist Rosa Bonheur, whose legacy inspires generations of artists worldwide. Visitors can explore an impressive collection of paintings, sculptures, and other artifacts while learning about Bonheur’s life and achievements. The museum also features temporary exhibits highlighting other prominent artists from different periods and art movements, making it an excellent destination for those interested in diverse art forms. Additionally, with plenty of outdoor activities available nearby, including hiking and horseback riding in the beautiful Fontainebleau Forest, this day trip offers something for everyone.

2. London

Take a break from the French countryside and hop on the Eurostar for an unforgettable day trip to London. The high-speed train will take you from Paris to London in just over two hours, giving you ample time to explore the iconic sights of this bustling metropolis.

There’s no shortage of world-famous landmarks, from Big Ben and Buckingham Palace to the Tower of London and the British Museum. Immerse yourself in centuries of history and culture as you stroll through charming neighborhoods like Notting Hill or Camden Town, or indulge in retail therapy at Oxford Street or Covent Garden. A day trip is a fantastic way to experience the best of incredible cities in one unforgettable adventure.

Take the Eurostar from Paris to London for a Day Trip

Eurostar is the fastest and most convenient way to get for a day trip. Travelers can board the train at Gare du Nord in central Paris and arrive in London just two hours later, making it an ideal choice for those short on time. Upon arrival, visitors can explore the iconic sights of London, such as Big Ben, Buckingham Palace, Tower Bridge, and the British Museum.

There are plenty of options for those interested in local culture and cuisine, including traditional English breakfasts or markets like Camden Market and Portobello Road. A river boat tour on the Thames River or one of London’s many world-class museums like Tate Modern or National Gallery are also great ways to spend a day in this vibrant city.

See the Iconic Sights of London

London is a city that abounds with iconic sights, which makes it an ideal day trips from Paris. Whether you’re a first-time visitor or returning to the town, there’s always something new to discover. Take in the breathtaking views of Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament, or cross over to the South Bank for a glimpse of the London Eye. If you’re more interested in British history and culture, head to Buckingham Palace or the British Museum.

Apart from its famous landmarks, London has vibrant neighborhoods teeming with local culture. Camden Market is a popular spot for tourists and locals, while Shoreditch is well-known for its street art scene. Don’t forget to indulge in traditional English cuisines such as fish and chips or high-end Michelin-starred restaurants. With so much to see and do, a day trip to London will surely be a memorable experience.

3. Bruges, Belgium

Located just a few hours from Paris, Bruges is a charming destination for a day trip. Known as the “Venice of the North,” this beautiful Belgian city boasts picturesque canals, historic architecture, and delicious cuisine. Stroll along the canals, admire the quaint houses and bridges, or visit the Choco-Story Chocolate Museum and Frietmuseum (Fries Museum) to learn about Belgium’s beloved sweet and savory treats.

Walk Along the Canals of Bruges

Bruges, Belgium, is a quaint medieval city known for its charming canals and historic architecture. A leisurely walk along the canals is an ideal way to explore the beauty of this picturesque city. The city also boasts several museums, including the Groeningemuseum, which showcases Flemish art from the 15th to the 21st century. However, foodies will find Bruges especially delightful as they indulge in famous Belgian chocolate and waffles.

With its easy accessibility from Paris by train, Bruges makes an ideal day trip destination for those looking to escape France for a day and explore this charming Belgian town.

Visit the Choco-Story Chocolate Museum and Frietmuseum (Fries Museum)

Bruges is a charming and historic city that offers visitors a unique experience. In addition to exploring its picturesque canals, travelers can visit the Choco-Story Chocolate Museum and Frietmuseum, which showcase some of Belgium’s most popular treats. The Choco-Story Chocolate Museum takes visitors on a journey through the history of chocolate, from its origins in South America to its popularity in Europe. Guests can also sample delicious Belgian chocolate while they learn about the process of making it. The Frietmuseum is equally fascinating, showcasing the humble French fry and its importance in Belgian culture. Visitors can see how fries are made and try them with various sauces.

 

In conclusion, France has some of the most beautiful and historically significant attractions, just a short journey from Paris. Whether you want to see breathtaking castles, sip wine in vineyards, or explore charming towns, there’s something for everyone on these day trips.

From Versailles to Brugges, there is so much to discover and explore. Don’t miss out on experiencing the best of what France offers! Ready to plan your next adventure?

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