Bonjour et bienvenue a Paris! A vacation in the City of Lights is an exciting experience, with each arrondissement offering something new. Whether you’re there for a weekend or longer, our list of day trips goes to show there’s no shortage of magnifique things to do beyond the city limits.
Enjoy an exclusive guided tour of one of the largest palaces in the world. See the State Apartments, the King’s Bedroom, the Hall of Mirrors, and more.

1. Visit Versailles

No trip to France is complete without paying homage to the hedonism of the past. Although their fondness for opulence and glamor resulted in a beheading or two, France’s royal family certainly left something to remember them by with the incredible Palace of Versailles. From the Hall of Mirrors to the not-so-petite getaway of Marie Antoinette, Petit Trianon, taking the 1-hour train ride from Paris is worth it. Once you arrive, this tour will ensure you enjoy walking the grounds (and getting behind the scenes) in style.

Step out of Paris and into a fairytale. Travel to the beautiful Loire Valley and explore three stunning châteaux.

2. Live the life in the Loire Valley

Home to some of the most incredible vin in France, the Loire Valley is no slouch when it comes to winery tastings (like on this day trip). Whether you prefer to enjoy crisp whites in the shade of the vineyard or relax with a red amongst one of the 1,000 regal chateaux, the Loire Valley has you covered. Catch the train from Paris and find yourself in the heart of wine country in just 90 minutes.

Take a poignant day trip from Paris to visit Normandy and the WWII D-Day landing beaches.

3. Knock around in Normandy

A 2.5-hour train ride from the city, Normandy is the ultimate destination for history buffs. Although historically a region that has bounced between English and French hands, the more recent events of D-Day make the beaches here the main attraction. Head out of Paris on this day trip to learn about the events of June 6, 1944 — the largest military operation in history. 

Discover the history and culture of Normandy as you travel from Paris to the village of Mont Saint-Michel.

4. Make your way to Mont Saint-Michel

Postcard-perfect doesn’t even begin to cover it! Mont Saint-Michel looks like something from a fairytale. Its spindly laneways and stone buildings are just begging to be photographed. This tiny town is a bit off a distance from Paris, but there’s an express train that will get you there in just 3.5 hours. The faithful have visited this oceanside town for centuries, with the oldest sections of the towering abbey dating back to 1144. Nowadays, it’s a nice spot to spend a few hours exploring and gathering artisanal souvenirs.

On this small-group day trip from Paris, journey through Rouen with a professional private guide.

5. Ramble through Rouen

Also situated in Normandy, Rouen is just 90 minutes from Paris. A day trip here is the perfect way for fans of art and architecture to spend an afternoon. After just a few minutes in the city’s old town, you’ll see why. Make sure you visit the famous Rouen Cathedral. So much more than a gorgeous Gothic landmark, the cathedral was also the inspiration behind Monet’s Rouen Cathedral series. But that’s not all. History buffs and the faithful will want to stop by the Church of St Joan of Arc. Located at the Place du Vieux-Marché, the church was built on top of the site of the saint’s death.

Head to the happiest place on earth for the day. © Disney

6. Discover Disney au Francais

With a number of new Disney resorts popping up across the globe, Europe’s very own location can be found just outside of Paris. The commute is just under an hour via train, so it’s no trouble for little ones and the less-patient members of the family. Once at the resort, dive into the world of Walt Disney by enjoying incredible rides, meeting your favorite characters and, of course, tasting the best of fun park treats!

Fans of flora should head to Provins for the day.

7. Peruse Provins

This medieval city is chock-full of history and just 90 minutes by train from Paris. Located north of the capital, Provins is best known for its medieval architecture and as a former trading hub. Today, the charming town is a prime destination for gorgeous strolls year-round and rose-scented souvenirs. Visitors heading to Provins in the cooler months should note that the opening hours for historical buildings like the Watchman’s Tower or underground passages can be restricted.

Enjoy priority entrance to the Fontainebleau Castle, where several generations of French monarchs lived and ruled.

8. Feel fancy in Fontainebleau

Just 45 minutes from Paris, this incredible castle makes for a solid contender for Versailles’ crown. Although just as committed to the “more is more” interior design philosophy, Fontainebleau is often less crowded and easier to explore. Additionally, you can get your daily dose of greenery by making your way through the nearby forest!

Explore Lille with a City Pass to get access to museums, transportation, and more.

9. Leap over to Lille

With not one but two incredible town squares, cobblestone streets, and local cuisine aplenty, Lille is the day tripper’s dream. Take the 1-hour bullet train and spend the day wandering through the picturesque laneways and shopping for local handicrafts. Once you’re sufficiently stocked with souvenirs, find a seat and enjoy northern specialties like Maroilles cheese and beef stew. 

Follow in the footsteps of Monet and visit the small village of Giverny.

10. Journey to Giverny

You might already feel familiar with the gardens of Giverny, as they were the inspiration behind Monet’s iconic water lilies. In the warmer months, take the 45-minute train trip from Paris to stroll through the incredible flora and see the painterly plants for yourself. For lunch, there are a number of cafés nearby but you can also pack your own snacks to enjoy amongst the gardens.

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