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15 Best Day Trips from Paris, France

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While Paris is at the heart of everyone’s French holiday, its various large train stations make train trips to the countryside easy and fast. This makes it an excellent home base for day trips outside the city! From the famous Palace of Versailles to the elegant gardens of Monet to the champagne sipping in Reims, there are indefinite day trips from Paris for all to enjoy.

The regional train runs to nearly every day trip on this list and is affordable. The high-speed trains can get expensive, but the slower regional trains are usually under 20 euros per person and relatively easy to navigate.

With easy train rides from anywhere in the city with a train station, day trips from Paris are a simple idea to experience a different side of France. Here are our top picks.

Day Trips From Paris, France

1. The Palace of Versailles (Château de Versailles)

Hall of Mirrors, Palace of Versailles

First up, the Château de Versailles is one of the most popular day trips from Paris. Visiting Versailles is an easy trip from the city, and you can spend the entire day learning about the palace and walking around the grounds. A private day tour is the best way to visit Château de Versailles.

The Palace of Versailles, or Château de Versailles, is one of the most famous landmarks in France. Touring the palace can take 45 minutes to 4 hours, depending on your speed and interests.

Château de Versailles is most famous for its ties to Marie Antoinette and the French Revolution. In addition to its historical significance, many consider the architecture of the Palace of Versailles to be a work of art, and I agree. The most famous room to see is the Hall of Mirrors, which is lined with mirrors, beautiful tile, and crystal chandeliers.

After you tour the palace, you can enjoy the luxurious gardens spread over 230 acres with more than 210,000 flowers. A day trip from Paris provides ample time to enjoy a guided tour of the palace and the gardens. While visiting the gardens, visit Marie Antoinette’s Hamlet (The Queen’s Hamlet) in the Trianon garden section. Marie Antoinette loved to spend her afternoons here, away from the palace.

Visiting Château de Versailles is also one of the best things to do in Paris with kids. Kids of all ages enjoy learning the history of Versailles while running around the beautiful rooms and playing in the extensive garden.

How to Get to Versailles from Paris

The Château de Versailles is about 25 km outside Paris, and there are multiple ways to get there:

  1. Train – The stress-free way to get to Versailles is to take the train. The Gare D’ Austerlitz station in central Paris has train rides to Versailles every 15 minutes. You can purchase train tickets at the station. Make sure to get off at the Versailles Chateau Rive Gauche station.
  2. Bus – You can take the Number 71 bus from Pont de Sevres in Paris to Versailles.
  3. Car – Renting a car is also an option that provides much flexibility. Versailles is a 45-minute drive, but traffic can add to that.
  4. Tour – There are many great tours of Versailles. These are our favorites:

Timing

The palace is open from Tuesday to Sunday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:30 PM from April to October and from 9:00 a.m. to 5:30 PM between November and March. You can easily spend an entire day exploring the palace and grounds!

See Related: 11 Famous Hotels in Paris

2. Disneyland Paris

Disneyland Paris

Imagine enjoying the magic of Disneyland with the benefits of French food and weather! Easily accessible by train, Disneyland Paris is an excellent option for families and Disney lovers looking for an entertaining day trip.

Disneyland Paris has two major parks, Disneyland Park and Walt Disney Studios Park, with five theme areas, wonderful resorts, and a golf course. Walt Disney Studios Park is the top place to go at Disneyland Paris.

Disneyland Paris has attractions to keep the family entertained for the whole day. The most popular part of the park is Le Chateau de la Belle au Bois Dormant (Sleeping Beauty Castle). The intricate architecture and detailing of the castle are pure magic. The park also contains a range of stimulating experiences, roller coasters, and haunted houses for the whole family to enjoy.

For an instant adrenaline rush, check out Big Splash Mountain. You can even get a multi-day entrance ticket for the full Disney experience. There are endless experiences available at Disneyland.

How to Buy Disneyland Paris Tickets

Disneyland Paris is much more affordable than its Orlando counterpart. The best option is to buy your tickets with transportation. You can also purchase single-day tickets or multi-day tickets in advance online without transportation. You can try to buy tickets when you get there, but we advise against that as they can sell out. It is best to book online first.

How to Get to Disneyland Paris from Central Paris

Disneyland Paris is located 60 km outside Paris, making it a quick day trip from Paris. There are three ways to get there:

  1. Train – The 45-minute train from Paris to Disneyland Paris departs from Charles De Gaulle Etoile station and arrives at Marne-la-Valle. There is a train that leaves the station every 15 minutes.
  2. Bus – Your first option is to get the Express Bus ticket, including a ticket to Disneyland Park. However, if you’re leaving from Charles du Gaulle Airport (CDG), take the Magical Shuttle bus.
  3. Tour – A great option is to purchase the transportation and tickets together. Another option is to hire a chauffeur with a private car.

Timing

  • Disneyland Park is open from 10:00 a.m. to 7:30 PM.
  • The Walt Disney Studio Park is open from 10:00 a.m. to 7:30 PM.

See Related: Best Theme Parks in Europe

3. Mont-Saint-Michel

Mont Saint Michel

A true architectural feat, the Mont-Saint-Michel in Normandy is straight out of a fairytale and a wonderful day trip from Paris. A stunning abbey with towering spires sits on the cliff’s edge as the tides wash against its shore. Nearly 3 million people visit the island yearly to admire the majestic Mont-Saint-Michel abbey built in the 8th century.

Mont-Saint-Michel is one of the more unique day trips from Paris. A few guided tours include transportation, or you can take public transportation. Either way, it is worth the visit: as you arrive, Mont-Saint-Michel appears like a distant mystical island.

The Grand Degre Steps, the stairs that lead to the Mont-Saint-Michel abbey, add to the beauty of this stunning structure. The strategic architecture has withstood numerous attacks over the years, making it a military masterpiece. A short trip to this UNESCO World Heritage Site is worth your time.

How to Get to Mont Saint Michel from Paris

A trip to Mont Saint Michel should take approximately 3-4 hours from Paris. You have three options to get there.

  1. Train – Since Mont-Saint-Michel is an island, you must first find your way to Rennes and then head to the abbey. Visit the Gare Montparnasse train station in Paris and take the train to Rennes. From there, hop on the bus that takes you to the mainland. You can walk across the 900 m Pont Passerelle or take a shuttle.
  2. Car – Driving is easy as well. Drive to Mont-Saint-Michel, where you can park your car 1.5 miles from the mainland. You can take a free shuttle from the parking lot that drops you off 450 m from the edge of Mont-Saint-Michel.
  3. Guided tour – The best option is to book a guided tour which starts in Paris. If you have an extra day, we highly recommend taking the 2-day Mont-Saint-Michel and the Loire Valley guided tour.

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4. Domaine de Chantilly

Castle by a River

Next on our list of day trips from Paris is Château de Chantilly, a beautiful castle located just outside Paris in the charming town of Chantilly. Forests and swampy marshes surround the castle, and it looks like it floats over a pond and canal system.

Built in the 16th century, Château de Chantilly has since been completely restored, offering a glimpse into the opulence and grandeur of the French aristocracy. The castle features stunning gardens, a museum, and an art gallery, making it a must-visit destination for art enthusiasts.

The magnificent French-style gardens at Château de Chantilly are the perfect place to spend an afternoon on a day trip. The gardens have beautifully manicured lawns, fountains, and ornate statues. There is also a stunning English garden and a French-style garden to explore. Visitors can take a stroll or a guided tour through the gardens and marvel at the beauty and tranquility of the surroundings.

Visitors can admire an impressive collection of artworks inside the chateau, including masterpieces by famous artists such as Raphael, Watteau, and Ingres. The castle also houses the largest collection of antique books in France, with over 60,000 volumes.

Finally, check out the Condé Museum, located inside the castle, known for its vast collection of art and artifacts. The museum features stunning collections of paintings, sculptures, and decorative arts from different eras, including the Renaissance, Baroque, and Rococo periods. You can enjoy masterpieces by Botticelli, Raphael, Titian Poussin Ingres, and Delacroix here.

How to Get to Château de Chantilly from Paris

The best way to get to Domaine de Chantilly from Paris is by car. The drive takes about an hour, and plenty of parking is on site. You can also take the train, which is a little slower, or the bus, which is the cheapest option but also the slowest.

Book your skip-the-line tickets in advance to maximize your time exploring. Or book a small group tour with transportation to get the best experience visiting this amazing castle.

See Related: Traditional French Dishes to Try

5. Reims

Cathedral in Reims, France

Of all the day trips from Paris, Reims is our favorite. The quaint town nestled in the Champagne region is filled with the best champagne producers, tasting rooms, and several UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

Venture to Ruinart, the first champagne producer, where you can go 40 meters underground into the salt caves before trying their champagne. A short walk away, you can find all the best champagne houses, such as Veuve Cliquot, Dom Perignon, Perrier Joliet, Moët & Chandon, and Tattinger. Our personal favorite is a smaller producer, Michel Gonet.

Champagne lovers will definitely want to make a day trip from Paris to the Champagne region. But there are more than just champagne houses in Reims. The famous cathedral of Reims is where the French King was coronated. There are also numerous Michelin-star restaurants and local bistros that are worth a visit.

The Champagne region of France is a must-see to experience its rich cultural history and the three UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

Best Tours of Reims

With so many champagne houses, there are a lot of tours to choose from. Here are our top three:

  1. This tour promises a top-tier tasting, such as at Moët & Chandon, and a boutique tasting to get the best of both worlds and transportation!
  2. Head to Veuve Cliquot and Pommery, two of the best champagne houses, followed by a wonderful lunch and guided tour.
  3. This tour includes eight tastings and round-trip transportation from Paris.

How to Get to Reims from Paris

  1. Train – The quickest way to get to Reims is by train, which takes 45 minutes. You can catch the train from the Gare de Est station in Paris and arrive at the Champagne-Ardenne station in Reims.
  2. Bus – The bus leaves from the Bercy-Seine station in Paris and arrives at the Champagne-Ardenne station in Reims. While the trip can take 2-3 hours, it is the cheapest option.
  3. Guided tour – For the full Reims experience, consider taking a guided tour. This gives you access to an array of local attractions and a tour guide who can impart some knowledge on your favorite champagne.
  4. Car – If you choose to drive to Reims, avoid the rush hour. A road trip with traffic can take 2 hours from Paris to Reims or longer.

See Related: Best Things to Do in Reims

6. Giverny

Monet Gardens in Giverny, France

Another one of our favorite destinations near Paris is the city of Giverny. This quaint town is a haven for art lovers because it is the home of the world-renowned artist Claude Monet.

tour of Giverny will take you through Monet’s gardens and house, which includes visits to the locations of Monet’s famous paintings, including the gardens and the Japanese bridge. While in the city, you can also go to the Musee des Impressionnismes (Impressionist Museum), a tribute to Monet that includes some of his best pieces. You can even visit Monet’s house and Monet’s gardens.

Touring Monet’s house and gardens are also family-friendly. There is a children’s tour, and kids can run through the gardens. With bridges and acres of flowers, there is a lot for the kids to explore!

If you want to splurge on a luxury meal during your visit to Giverny, stop at Le Jardin des Plumes, a lovely Michelin-star restaurant.

How to Get to Giverny from Paris

Giverny is 75 km from Paris. You can take the train to Giverny via Vernon.

  1. Train – You can catch the train to Vernon from Paris at the Saint Lazare station. This takes you to a town called Vernon. This trip should take 45 minutes. At Vernon, you can hop on a shuttle to Giverny. Returning to Paris, take the SNCF line from Saint-Lazare Rouen Rive Droite in Giverny, bringing you to Vernon. Take the train back to Paris.
  2. Guided tour – A second option would be to take a guided tour. Many tours provide transport from Paris to Giverny. If you like to bike, there is a wonderful bike tour from central Paris to Monet’s Gardens.

See Related: Best Museums in Europe

7. Beaches of Normandy

Beaches of Normandy, France

If you need a break from the hustle and bustle of Parisian city life, head to the beaches of Normandy for a day of relaxation. But, of course, some of the best sights here are the D-Day landing beaches.

The beach was the scene of some of the worst battles fought in World War II; the most infamous D-Day occurred here. Yet, today, the beach is known for its calm and serene environment, providing an incredible view of the oceans and cliffs and incredible World War II history.

On this day trip from Paris, you can take a guided tour of the memorials and museums on your way to this pristine beach, including the Caen Memorial, Omaha Beach, the American Cemetery, and the ruins of the artificial harbor at Arromanches. .

There is much to learn about D-Day and the wars on this sand. While you’re there, make sure to taste the Camembert cheese invented in Normandy by the same name.

A day trip from Paris to Normandy is necessary for anyone visiting France. There are also plenty of other attractions in Normandy, such as the beautiful countryside and charming villages.

How to Get to Normandy from Paris

There are a few ways to get to Normandy from Paris. These include:

  1. Train – If you are on a budget, your best option is to go by train on this day trip from Paris. You can catch the train at Gare Saint Lazare in Paris, which takes you straight to Bayeux, Normandy. Early birds can get a first-class ticket for the price of a 2nd class ticket.
  2. Bus – Another economical way to get to Normandy is by bus. You can take the bus from Gare de Lyon in Paris to Caen Train Station in Normandy. This trip takes 3.5 hours, followed by a 20-minute bus ride from Caen to Bayeux.
  3. Guided tour – If you don’t want to deal with the hassle of finding a ride, you can take a guided tour of Normandy’s beaches. The tour covers various memorial sites and beaches like D-Day and Juno. Learn more about Normandy’s history as you explore. Another option includes a tour and lunch.

See Related: Best Beaches in France

8. Loire Valley

Blois, France in Loire Valley

If you want to splurge on a getaway during your trip to Paris, you can visit Loire Valley, a wine area close to Paris. This vast piece of land is located between the North and South of France and was famous for its strategic location during the Second World War.

In addition to tasting the wines of the region, visitors can also get a glimpse into the rich cultural history of France. This picturesque place has over 300 stunning castles, the Chateau de Chambord and Chateau de Chenonceau being the most famous. The best way to see it is by booking a castle tour to several castles and wineries.

After touring the castles, you can visit the Musee des Beaux-Arts, home to some notable works of art. Finally, you can end this fun day trip from Paris to Loire Valley day at one of the many roadside cafes.

How to Get to the Loire Valley from Paris

The journey from Paris to Loire Valley can take 1.5-3 hours, depending on your mode of transport.

  1. Guided tour – The journey to Loire Valley from Paris includes a few train transfers, so the best way to get there would be with an organized tour. The tour will cover your transportation, tickets, and a local guide.
  2. Train – You can take the train from the Montparnasse train station in Paris to the St. Pierre Des Corps train station. Here, it would be best to catch a bus at the St. Pierre Garr Station, which takes you to Jericho in Loire Valley.
  3. Bus – You can take a number of buses from the Bercy Seine station in Paris to Loire Valley. The trip takes around 3 hours.

See Related: Best Night Tours in Paris

9. Château de Fontainebleau

Château Fontainebleau

The Château de Fontainebleau is a magnificent castle located just 1.5 hours from Paris, and to get there, you have both train and guided tour options. The Château Fontainebleau, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, has been the residence of France’s sovereigns since the 8th century and contains lovely gardens and forests.

There is more than just the castle to see in Fontainebleau. Fontainebleau is located in the French countryside and has several hiking areas to walk through the woods and enjoy some fresh air. The Forest Swing Place is nearby and quite beautiful.

In addition to the hiking trails and palaces, there is an equestrian center where you can watch horses being trained. There is also a quaint downtown with several restaurants and local shops.

How to Get to Fontainebleau from Paris

The fastest way to get to Château de Fontainebleau is by car. It’s located just 1.5 hours from Paris.

  • Tour – The easiest option is a guided tour that will handle all transportation and tickets for you.
  • Train You can easily get to Fontainebleau from Paris by train. A direct line from the Gare de Lyon train station will take you directly to Fontainebleau. From here you can walk or take a bus to the castle.

See Related: London vs Paris

10. Provins

Provins, France

Catch a break from busy Paris life with a day trip to the medieval UNESCO World Heritage town of Provins. This quaint town will take you back to medieval France.

You enter Provins through a medieval wall that was built around the city. Next up on your Paris day trip is walking along the streets lined with half-timbered houses and local shops. Nearly every corner is picture-perfect, and it feels as though you are in a fairy tale.

The town was built between the 11th and 17th centuries and used to be very populated. Given its location, it was once the center of trade in the region.

Some must-see attractions include the Le Legend Le Chevaliers, which features a variety of medieval comedy sketches. However, the Remparts and La Tour Cesar are more beautiful structures to visit, making it feel like you are back in the Middle Ages.

After exploring the town, head to the Valleys of the 2 Morin if you have time. This beautiful part of the French countryside is home to the Saint-Martin Church, surrounded by poppy fields and several incredible French gardens such as the La Parmélie Garden, Viels-Maisons, and Let Point de Jour (the Remarkable Gardens).

How to Get to Provins from Paris

There are three ways to get to Provins from Paris.

  1. Train – You can get to Provis from Paris by train directly. Catch the train to Provins at the Paris Gare de l’Est train station. The train ride is about 1.5 hours.
  2. Bus – The N4 bus in Paris will get you to Provins in 1.5 hours.

See Related: Famous Hotels in Paris

11. Strasbourg

Timber Houses and Canal

Two hours outside Paris by train lies the beautiful city of Strasbourg. This bustling city is located in the Alsace region on the Rhine River, which means it has great options for wine tasting and incredible dining. It is also home to one of the largest and most popular Christmas markets.

While on your day trip from Paris, check out the Petite France area of Strasbourg. The entire area looks like you are walking through the town in Beauty and the Beast, complete with half-timbered houses and quaint shops. Enjoy some foie gras and Cremont, two local specialties.

Strasbourg is also known for its gothic Notre Dame Cathedral, the tallest building in the world for hundreds of years. The cathedral is free to visit. However, you can pay to go up in the towers as well.

While in Strasbourg for the day, you can enjoy a quaint boat tour or a walking tour with a local guide. There is a lot of history to learn about Strasbourg – the city actually changed states several times between France and Germany. The last time it switched was after the Second World War.

How to Get to Strasbourg from Paris

Strasbourg may seem far away on a map, but it is actually easy to get to from Paris. The high-speed train runs directly from Paris Gare de l’Est train station to Strasbourg’s main train station. The ride is just under 2 hours.

See Related: Strasbourg Cathedral, a UNESCO World Heritage Site

12. Lille

Lille, France

Lille is a charming city in northern France, just a short train ride from Paris, making it the perfect destination for a day trip. The city is known for its beautiful architecture and delicious cuisine.

One of the main attractions in Lille is the beautiful Old Town, with its colorful Flemish-style buildings, charming cobblestone streets, and numerous cafes and shops. You can spend hours exploring the area, taking in the sights and sounds of this picturesque neighborhood.

Another must-see in Lille is the famous Palace of Fine Arts, one of the largest museums in France.

For foodies, Lille is a true paradise. The city is famous for its delicious cuisine, including the famous carbonnade flamande (a hearty beef stew), the hearty Welsch (a French take on Welsh rarebit), and the famous Maroilles cheese. While visiting from Paris, you can sample these delicious dishes at one of the many traditional brasseries and restaurants.

Lille also has great shopping. There are countless boutiques, antique shops, and markets with everything from unique souvenirs to high-end designer clothing.

How to Get to Lille from Paris

The trip from Paris by train to Lille takes an hour. You can catch the high-speed TGV train at Gare du Nord, which will take you to Gare de Lille Flandres or Gare de Lille Europe, located in the heart of Lille.

13. Lyon

Scenic River in Lyon, France

For foodies, Lyon is one of the best day trips from Paris. Lyon is known for its incredible cuisine in the Bellecour neighborhood and throughout the city. The city has numerous bistros, cafes, and Michelin-starred restaurants serving delicious dishes such as coq au vin and quenelles. In addition, you can book a Lyon food walking tour to try some of the local specialties!

Outside of trying the many excellent restaurants, Lyon is a picturesque and historic city that makes for a wonderful day trip from Paris. Located just a few hours away by train, Lyon offers visitors a chance to explore a different side of France.

The city is known for its stunning architecture, including the striking Notre Dame de Fourvière Basilica and the impressive Roman amphitheater. Visitors can stroll through the charming Old Town and admire the colorful buildings or take a relaxing walk along the banks of the Rhône River. A great way to see Lyon on a day trip from Paris is by booking a river cruise.

Overall, Lyon is a fantastic destination for a day trip from Paris. Its rich history, beautiful architecture, and mouthwatering food make it a must-visit city for anyone traveling to France.

How to Get to Lyon from Paris

The easiest and most efficient way to take a day trip from Paris to Lyon is by high-speed train. The train takes about 2 hours from the Gare de Lyon station and runs several times daily.

See Related: Things to Do in Lyon

14. Bruges, Belgium

Bruges Canals in Belgium

Given Paris’ central location, visitors can also visit one of France’s neighboring countries. The stunning medieval town of Bruges in Belgium is just a short trip from Paris.

The city became famous after the movie ‘In Bruges’ starring Colin Farrell. The town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site with beautiful brownstone architecture that dates back to the 12th century.

You can ride a boat through the city’s canals and visit the famous Groeningemueseum. You can also taste one of the city’s many delicacies, like chocolate and beer. This is hands down one of the coolest day trips from Paris, and it’s not something everyone thinks of when planning their trip.

How to Get to Bruges from Paris

  1. Train – the best way to get to Bruges from Paris is by train. You can take the train at the Paris Nord station, which takes you directly to Bruges. The whole trip will take 2.5 hours.

See Related: Amsterdam vs Brussels

15. London, England

Big Ben and London Skyline

One of the lesser-considered day trips from Paris is across the English Channel – London! It is a relatively easy train trip from Paris where you can tour the many sights and enjoy some pub ales.

While stopping by London on a day trip from Paris, you can ride the London Eye, visit Buckingham Palace, and shop at Harrod’s before returning to the city of lights. For the most efficient sightseeing, hop on a bus tour. London has a lot to see, and while you can peek at many sights from the London Eye, you’ll want to see them up close!

How to Get to London from Paris

The best and most efficient way to get to London from Paris is by train. The Eurostar train takes 2-2.5 hours and goes directly from Gare du Nord to London.

As you can see, there are many great day trips from Paris! We hope you can enjoy some of these easy escapes that can give you a much-needed break from the fast-paced city life.

From an incredible culinary experience to theme parks and palaces, each place offers something unique. So, where will you be heading next?

See Related: London vs Paris

FAQ

Can you make a day trip from Paris to Normandy?

Yes, you can travel from Paris to Normandy via train. The journey takes 2-2.5 hours each way, depending on your destination in Normandy. If you’re headed to Normandy Beach, and the D-Day Museum, the train from Paris to Bayeux is 2.5-3 hours each way.

Can I take a train from Paris to London?

Yes, you can take the train from Paris to London via Eurostar. The train departs from Paris Gare du Nord station and arrives at London St Pancras International Station. The journey takes approximately 2-2.5 hours. It’s important to note that you will need a valid passport.

What cities can you visit from Paris by train?

You can visit several different cities by train from Paris. Some of the best day trips include Versailles, Chartres, and Giverny. There are also several other great options depending on what interests you most.

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