Paris is an incredible city with so much to see and do. But sometimes, you need to escape the hustle and bustle and discover new places. Luckily, there are many weekend trips from Paris that can be reached by car or train.
Trips for the perfect Weekend Away from Paris
- [icon name=”train” prefix=”fas”] France has a fantastic train infrastructure, making it easy to connect to cities and to neighboring countries. Purchase your train tickets via Trainline.
- [icon name=”car” prefix=”fas”] For more off-the-beaten-path weekend trips from Paris, renting a car makes a solid choice to make the perfect trip.
- [icon name=”hotel” prefix=”fas”] Some of the best and most unique accommodations such as a romantic French chateau can be found on Vrbo or Booking.com.
Here are 11-weekend trips from Paris worth exploring:
Just a short train ride from Paris is the stunning Palace of Versailles. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is famous for its opulent decor and beautiful gardens. You can take a guided tour of the palace and learn about its history, or simply wander through the gardens and admire the fountains and sculptures.
Versailles, located just 20 kilometers southwest of Paris, is an absolute must-visit as a weekend trip from the French capital. The magnificent Palace of Versailles and its surrounding gardens are an incredible testament to France’s grandeur and opulence during the 17th and 18th centuries.
One of the main reasons to visit Versailles is to see the Palace itself. Built-in the 17th century as the residence of Louis XIV, the palace boasts over 2,300 rooms and halls, including the famous Hall of Mirrors. This stunning room, adorned with chandeliers and mirrors, was used for grand receptions and ceremonies. Visitors can also see the King’s and Queen’s apartments, the Royal Chapel, and the Opera House.
The Palace of Versailles is also famous for its extensive gardens. Designed by André Le Nôtre, the gardens cover over 800 hectares and are adorned with fountains, sculptures, and manicured lawns. Visitors can rent a bike or take a guided tour to explore the gardens, or simply relax and enjoy the beautiful surroundings.
In addition to the Palace and gardens, there are many other attractions worth visiting in Versailles. The Grand Trianon, a small palace built for Louis XIV as a retreat from court life, is a beautiful example of French classical architecture. The Petit Trianon, a small chateau located in the park, was a private residence for Marie Antoinette and is known for its romantic English-style gardens.
The town of Versailles itself is also worth exploring. The market square, located near the Palace, is a great place to sample local specialties like cheese and wine. The town also has several museums, including the Musée Lambinet, which showcases the history of the town and its surroundings.
[icon name=”place-of-worship” prefix=”fas”] Versailles Top Tour Pick: Explore the Palace of Versailles with a guided tour and Garden access. The Versailles Guided Tour also includes skip-the-line access.
Versailles is definitely worth visiting as a day trip or as a weekend trip from Paris. The Palace of Versailles and its gardens are stunning examples of French grandeur and opulence, and there are many other attractions in the town and surrounding area to explore. Whether you’re interested in history, architecture, or simply beautiful surroundings, a day trip to Versailles is sure to be an unforgettable experience.
How to get to Versailles from Paris
Visiting Versailles as a day trip from Paris is relatively easy. The Palace and gardens can be reached by train from the city center in about 30 minutes. Once there, visitors can explore at their own pace or take a guided tour. It’s best to arrive early in the day to avoid crowds and make the most of your time.
Take the train line RER C, which is the easiest way to get to Versailles from Paris. You can hop onto the RER C from a number of metro stations before terminating your journey at Versailles Chateau Rive Gauche station. You can see the RER C line and stops here.
Where to Stay in Versailles
Whether you decide to stay the night in Versailles or head back to Paris that evening, there are a number of choices to select from.
Le Louis Versailles Chateau – MGallery – a 5 minute walk from Versailles Palace, its hard to beat this 4 star location.
Waldorf Astoria Versailles – Feel like royalty with a stay in the 5-Star Waldorf Astoria which features a Michelin star Gordon Ramsay restaurant on site. Exquisite.
Another nearby destination is Giverny, the home of the famous painter Claude Monet. You can visit his home and gardens, which served as inspiration for many of his famous works. The gardens are especially beautiful in the spring and summer, when the flowers are in full bloom.
Giverny is a small village located just an hour outside of Paris, and it’s definitely worth visiting as a weekend trip from Paris. The village is known for being the home of the famous artist Claude Monet, and visitors can explore his former home and gardens, which served as inspiration for many of his famous paintings.
[icon name=”tree” prefix=”fas”] Giverny Top Tour: Skip the line with this guided tour of Monet’s house and gardens.
The main attraction in Giverny is Monet’s house and gardens, which are open to the public. The house has been preserved as it was when Monet lived there, with many of his original furnishings and personal belongings on display.
Visitors can also explore the gardens, which are divided into two parts: the flower garden and the water garden. The water garden is home to Monet’s famous water lilies, which he painted repeatedly in his later years. Visitors can walk across the Japanese bridge that Monet built in his garden and admire the serene beauty of the pond.
Aside from Monet’s house and gardens, Giverny is a charming village with plenty to see and do. The village has several art galleries, shops, and restaurants, as well as a church and a cemetery where Monet is buried. Visitors can stroll through the picturesque streets and enjoy the peaceful, rural atmosphere.
Giverny is also a popular destination for nature lovers. The village is surrounded by beautiful countryside, with rolling hills, forests, and fields. Visitors can rent bikes and explore the surrounding area, or take a leisurely walk along the Seine River.
Giverny is a charming and picturesque village that’s definitely worth visiting as a weekend trip from Paris. Visitors can explore the beautiful gardens and home of Claude Monet, as well as enjoy the peaceful atmosphere of the village and surrounding countryside. Whether you’re an art lover or simply looking for a relaxing day trip from Paris, Giverny is a great choice.
How to get to Giverny from Paris
Getting to Giverny from Paris is relatively easy and can be done by train, bus, or car.
The easiest way to get to Giverny from Paris is by train. You can take a train from Paris to Vernon, which is the closest train station to Giverny. From there, you can take a shuttle bus or taxi to Giverny. The train journey from Paris to Vernon takes about an hour, and trains run regularly throughout the day.
Another option is to take a bus from Paris to Giverny. The bus departs from the Porte Maillot bus station in Paris and takes about 1 hour and 30 minutes to reach Giverny. The bus runs daily during the summer months and on weekends during the rest of the year.
If you prefer to drive, Giverny is located about 80 kilometers (50 miles) northwest of Paris, and the journey takes about an hour and a half, depending on traffic. You can rent a car in Paris and drive to Giverny, or hire a private driver for a more comfortable and hassle-free experience.
Once you arrive in Giverny, you can explore the village and Monet’s gardens at your leisure. The village is small enough to explore on foot, and there are plenty of restaurants and cafes where you can enjoy a meal or a drink.
If you love champagne, then a trip to the champagne region is a must. You can take a tour of the vineyards and cellars, and of course, taste some of the best champagne in the world. Reims and Epernay are the two main cities in the region, and both can be easily reached by train from Paris.
Champagne is known worldwide for its sparkling wine, and there are numerous champagne houses located throughout the region that are worth visiting. Some of the most noteworthy champagne houses to visit in Champagne include:
- Moët et Chandon: One of the largest and most famous champagne houses in the world, Moët et Chandon is located in the town of Épernay and offers a range of tours and tastings.
- Veuve Clicquot: Another well-known champagne house located in Épernay, Veuve Clicquot is known for its high-quality champagne and beautiful cellars.
- Taittinger: This family-owned champagne house is located in the city of Reims and offers tours of its historic cellars, as well as tastings of its renowned champagnes.
- Laurent-Perrier: With a history dating back to 1812, Laurent-Perrier is one of the oldest champagne houses in the region. Located in Tours-sur-Marne, the house offers tours and tastings in a beautiful setting.
- Piper-Heidsieck: This champagne house is located in Reims and offers a range of tours and tastings, including a unique experience where guests can blend their own champagne.
- Bollinger: Known for its association with the James Bond franchise, Bollinger is located in Ay and offers tours of its cellars and tastings of its distinctive champagnes.
- Ruinart: One of the oldest champagne houses in Champagne, Ruinart is located in Reims and offers tours of its historic cellars, as well as tastings of its renowned champagnes.
- Pol Roger: This family-owned champagne house is located in Epernay and offers tours of its historic cellars, as well as tastings of its high-quality champagnes.
These are just a few of the many champagne houses located throughout the Champagne region that are worth visiting.
[icon name=”wine-bottle” prefix=”fas”] Champagne Vineyard Tours & eBike: Cycle around several of the Champagne houses on fully electric bikes and drink your way around the region.
Each house has its own unique history and style, and visitors can learn about the champagne-making process and taste some of the best champagnes in the world. It’s definitely a perfect weekend trip from Paris for Champagne lovers!
Normandy is a region with a rich history, from the D-Day beaches to the Mont Saint-Michel. You can take a guided tour or explore on your own, visiting museums, memorials, and historic sites. Be sure to try the local seafood, including oysters, mussels, and scallops.
When visiting Normandy, there are several towns and cities that make great bases for exploring the region. Here are a few options to consider:
- Bayeux: A charming town located just a short distance from the D-Day beaches, Bayeux is a popular base for visitors to Normandy. The town is home to the famous Bayeux Tapestry and has a number of restaurants and cafes to choose from.
- Caen: The largest city in Normandy, Caen is located near the D-Day beaches and has a rich history that includes William the Conqueror’s castle and the Abbaye aux Hommes. There are plenty of accommodations, restaurants, and shops in Caen, and it’s well-connected to other parts of the region.
- Honfleur: A picturesque port town on the coast of Normandy, Honfleur is known for its colorful houses and beautiful harbor. It’s a popular destination for artists and has a lively restaurant and nightlife scene.
- Rouen: The historic capital of Normandy, Rouen is known for its Gothic cathedral, medieval architecture, and charming old town. It’s a great base for exploring other parts of the region, including the Pays d’Auge and the Seine Valley.
- Mont Saint-Michel: Although not technically in Normandy (it’s in the neighboring region of Brittany), Mont Saint-Michel is a popular destination for visitors to the region. The iconic island monastery is located just a few hours’ drive from most major towns in Normandy and is a must-see attraction for many visitors.
Ultimately, the best place to base yourself when visiting Normandy will depend on your interests and travel plans. All of the above options offer plenty of opportunities for exploring the region’s history, culture, and natural beauty, and each has its own unique character and charm.
There are several ways to get to Normandy from Paris, depending on your preferences and travel plans. Here are a few options:
- Train: The easiest and most convenient way to get to Normandy from Paris is by train. There are regular trains from Paris to major cities in Normandy, including Caen, Bayeux, and Rouen. The journey takes around 2-3 hours, depending on your destination.
- Car: If you prefer to drive, renting a car is a good option for exploring the region at your own pace. The journey from Paris to Normandy takes around 2-3 hours, depending on your destination, and there are several car rental agencies located in Paris.
- Bus: There are also several bus companies that offer services from Paris to Normandy. This can be a more affordable option than the train, but the journey times can be longer and the schedules less frequent.
- Private tour: For a more personalized experience, you may want to consider booking a private tour that includes transportation from Paris to Normandy. This can be a good option if you want to visit multiple sites or have a limited amount of time to explore the region.
Ultimately, the best way to get to Normandy from Paris will depend on your preferences and travel plans. The train is usually the most convenient option, but renting a car or booking a private tour can offer more flexibility and opportunities for exploring the region.
5. Loire Valley
The Loire Valley is famous for its beautiful chateaux, gardens, and vineyards. You can take a guided tour of the region, or simply pick a few chateaux to visit on your own. The town of Tours is a good place to start, and be sure to try the local wine and cheese.
The Loire Valley is home to many beautiful châteaux, each with their own unique history and charm. Here are some of the must-see châteaux to visit in the region:
- Château de Chambord: One of the most iconic châteaux in the Loire Valley, Château de Chambord is known for its distinctive French Renaissance architecture and impressive size. Built in the 16th century for King Francis I, it has over 400 rooms and a stunning double-helix staircase.
- Château de Chenonceau: Known as the “Château of the Ladies,” Château de Chenonceau is a beautiful château built over the Cher River. It was owned by several influential women throughout history, including Catherine de’ Medici and Diane de Poitiers, and has impressive gardens and a unique gallery over the river.
- Château de Cheverny: A well-preserved example of classical French architecture, Château de Cheverny has been owned by the same family for over six centuries. It features beautiful interiors, a vast art collection, and a kennel of over 100 hunting dogs.
- Château de Blois: A former royal residence, Château de Blois has a mix of architectural styles, including Gothic, Renaissance, and classical. It was the site of several important events in French history, including the assassination of the Duke of Guise in 1588.
- Château de Villandry: Known for its stunning gardens, Villandry features ornamental flower gardens, vegetable gardens, and water gardens. It also has a beautiful Renaissance-style château with a unique design that incorporates natural light.
- Château de Amboise: A former royal residence, Château de Amboise has a rich history that includes Leonardo da Vinci, who is buried in the nearby Chapel of St. Hubert. The château features beautiful architecture and impressive views of the Loire River.
These are just a few of the many beautiful châteaux to visit in the Loire Valley. Each has its own unique history and charm, and all are worth a visit for anyone interested in French history and architecture.
Belgium’s capital city is just a short train ride from Paris. Brussels is famous for its chocolate, waffles, and beer, so be sure to indulge in all three. You can also visit the Grand Place, the Atomium, and the Manneken Pis, a famous statue of a little boy peeing.
The canals, museums, and coffee shops of Amsterdam are just a few hours away by train. You can take a boat tour of the canals, visit the Van Gogh Museum or the Rijksmuseum, or simply wander through the city’s charming streets.
Lyon is the capital of French cuisine, so if you’re a foodie, this is the place to go. You can take a food tour of the city, or simply explore on your own, stopping to try the local specialties like quenelles, saucisson, and macarons. Lyon also has a rich history and beautiful architecture, so be sure to visit the Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourvière and the Old Town.
Bordeaux, oh Bordeaux! This city is not just famous for its wine, but it also offers a plethora of activities and sights that will surely make your trip a memorable one.
First and foremost, let’s talk about the wine. You can’t visit Bordeaux without indulging in a glass or two (or three, who’s counting?) of their world-renowned wine. From sweet dessert wines to bold and robust reds, you’ll find something to suit your palate.
And what’s better than sipping on a glass of wine while taking in the scenic views of the vineyards? You can take a day trip to the nearby vineyards and enjoy wine tasting tours, complete with the perfect cheese and charcuterie pairings.
Bordeaux has a rich history and is home to several museums, including the Museum of Fine Arts, the Bordeaux Wine and Trade Museum, and the CAPC Museum of Contemporary Art. The city’s architecture is also worth seeing, with its elegant 18th-century buildings and grand public squares.
If you’re a foodie, then Bordeaux has got you covered as well. The city’s culinary scene is a mix of traditional and modern cuisine, with plenty of local specialties to try. From the famous canelé, a small caramelized pastry, to the savory and hearty entrecôte bordelaise, you’ll find something to satisfy your taste buds.
And let’s not forget the shopping. Bordeaux has a mix of high-end boutiques and unique shops, making it a perfect destination for fashionistas and anyone looking for souvenirs to take home.
Finally, Bordeaux is a vibrant and lively city, with a lively nightlife scene. You can enjoy a glass of wine or a cocktail in one of the many bars and clubs, or take a leisurely stroll along the Garonne River and enjoy the stunning view of the city at night.
All in all, Bordeaux is definitely worth visiting, whether you’re a wine lover, a history buff, a foodie, a shopper, or just looking for a fun and lively destination. With its mix of culture, history, and gastronomy, it’s a city that has something for everyone!
Looking for a weekend trip from Paris that combines sunshine, beaches, and charming streets? Look no further than Nice, the jewel of the French Riviera!
Nice is a city that has it all, from beautiful beaches to stunning architecture and mouth-watering cuisine. As soon as you step off the plane or train, you will feel the warmth of the Mediterranean sun on your skin and the salty sea breeze in your hair.
The beaches are the main attraction of Nice, and they do not disappoint. The city boasts a seven-kilometer-long stretch of coastline with crystal-clear waters and pebble beaches. Whether you want to soak up the sun, take a dip in the sea, or enjoy a refreshing cocktail at one of the many beach clubs, Nice has something for everyone.
But Nice is more than just a beach destination. The Old Town, known as Vieux Nice, is a labyrinth of narrow streets and colorful buildings that will transport you back in time. The area is home to several historic landmarks, such as the Cours Saleya flower market, the Place Rossetti with its stunning Baroque architecture, and the Castle Hill park that offers panoramic views of the city.
If you’re a foodie, then Nice is the perfect destination for you. The city is famous for its Niçoise cuisine, which includes dishes such as salade Niçoise, socca (a thin pancake made from chickpea flour), and pissaladière (a pizza-like dish topped with onions, anchovies, and olives).
You can indulge in these local specialties at one of the many charming restaurants or at the bustling Marché de la Libération, a food market that offers a wide selection of local produce and specialties.
Finally, Nice is also a great base for exploring the rest of the French Riviera. You can take a short train ride to the glitzy towns of Cannes and Monaco or explore the picturesque villages of Eze and Saint-Paul-de-Vence.
In short, Nice is the perfect destination for a weekend trip from Paris. With its beautiful beaches, charming Old Town, mouth-watering cuisine, and easy access to the rest of the French Riviera, it’s a city that will leave you wanting more!
Looking for a weekend trip from Paris that combines history, culture, and delicious food? Look no further than Strasbourg, the capital of the Alsace region!
Strasbourg is a city that has it all, from stunning architecture to mouth-watering cuisine and charming streets. As soon as you arrive, you’ll be captivated by its unique blend of French and German influences.
One of the main attractions of Strasbourg is the historic city center, which has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The area is home to several stunning landmarks, such as the magnificent Gothic cathedral, which is one of the tallest in the world. You can also explore the picturesque Petite France neighborhood, with its quaint half-timbered houses and romantic canals.
But Strasbourg is more than just a pretty face. The city is also known for its delicious cuisine, which combines French and German influences to create a unique flavor palette. Some of the must-try dishes include choucroute (sauerkraut with sausages and potatoes), flammekueche (a thin pizza-like dish topped with cream, onions, and bacon), and baeckeoffe (a hearty meat and vegetable stew).
Finally, Strasbourg is also a great base for exploring the rest of the Alsace region. You can take a short train ride to the charming towns of Colmar and Riquewihr, which are famous for their colorful half-timbered houses and picturesque streets. Or, if you’re feeling adventurous, you can explore the beautiful Vosges Mountains, which offer stunning views and a wide range of outdoor activities.
In short, Strasbourg is the perfect destination for a weekend trip from Paris. With its stunning architecture, delicious cuisine, and easy access to the rest of the Alsace region, it’s a city that will leave you wanting more!