I recently had a quick trip to Paris in the works and thought it would be a great idea to visit Giverny, the tiny village that houses the garden of Impressionist master painter Claude Monet. Monet was a talented painter but also a passionate gardener so hello impressionist botanical delight! I set out on my journey on that early summer Friday morning excited for what I'd see.
The gardens of Monet literally look exactly like the paintings- breathtaking! The main garden connected to his house- known as Clos Normand - swayed with a delicate country ease as I moved through its archways. Summer floral standouts included an abundancy of hollyhocks, dahlias, and sunflowers the size of my head. Through an underground walkway I was transported to The Water Garden, the Japanese inspired landscape of Monet's famous Lily Pond series. Observing the same alluring view that Monet painted IRL is really an incredible experience!
The influence of Japan isn't considered just in the garden. As I entered his home I was surprised to learn that Monet was an avid collector of ukiyo-e . A combined total of 117 prints by Kitagawa Utamaro, Utagawa Hiroshige, and my favorite Hokusai filled the two floors and brought an unexpected smile to my face.
I do love an impressionist painting; the way the complementing colors connect to is so delicate and peaceful. Walking towards the center of the village, the Museum of Impressionism is a great pit stop. During my trip I saw the lovely 2017 exhibition on Manguin. It was fantastic to see such stunning original work- most that you'd find at the MET- in a quaint French countryside museum. Très chic.
Monet's home and gardens are a very lovely adventure -and so doable! My full tour of Giverny took a total of 2ish hours and left me hungry! About 20 minutes towards the Seine a cozy hotel restaurant spoke to me for the perfect dejuner. With cows and horses grazing along the road it was oh so French majestic. After a few more stops we were back in Paris by 4:30pm! If you've been to Paris more than once and are looking for a beautiful garden without Versailles proportions I highly recommend this day trip for maximum botanical daydreaming. #itsplantporn
GIVERNY day trip
morning CAPPUCCINO AT LES NYMPHÉAS
LUNCH AT LES BORDES DES SEINE
HORSE RIDING AT EQUESTRE DE HOUSSAYE
images from top: above, @wisf; throughout, Imane Fiocchi. Painting images sourced from the MET