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La Roche-Guyon / Vernon La Seine à Vélo

18,31 Km
1 h 14 min
I cycle often
La Roche-Guyon / Vernon
La Roche-Guyon
Vernon
Sticking by the river, on this Seine à Vélo stage, follow in the footsteps of the great painter Claude Monet. Take a last look back at the Château de La Roche-Guyon and the charming village around it before heading off on Monet’s trail. This bucolic waterside stage incites contemplation. You leave the Ile de France Region for Normandy and the département (county) of Eure, heading for Giverny, then Vernon, with wonderful discoveries to make, not just from the Impressionist period, but also from medieval times. In Giverny, a tour of Claude Monet’s house and of the art museum, the Musée des Impressionnismes, are a must. Vernon’s museum also contains fine Impressionist works, including two original Claude Monet canvases. Along this stage, try the excellent local produce on offer, from the Château de la Roche-Guyon’s kitchen garden to the Vergers de Giverny orchards.

The route

Leaving La Roche Guyon, the Seine à Vélo runs beside the river, along the RD100 road, crossing the villages of Gommecourt and Bennecourt (with traffic-calming zones) before taking a short cut via little country roads to Limetz-Villez. Then join Rue du Port, where cyclists need to take care, while awaiting the laying out of a suitable cycle track here. Next, it’s on to Rue du Paradis and the RD201 road; again, take care, given the speed of traffic here, awaiting the transformations for cyclists. All this stretch on the border of the Ile de France département of Yvelines is on hard surfaces (except for a very short portion along Rue des Bâtards, which should soon be properly surfaced). The RD201 road comes to an end at the level of the bridge over the Epte River, taking you to the RD5 road in the Norman county of Eure.

Once in the Eure, the cycle route leads you along the RD5 road for a few hundred metres, crossing through the village of Giverny, even passing in front of Claude Monet’s garden. Take particular care at the first crossroads you come to (the intersection between the RD201 and RD5 roads).

Reaching the Parking de la Prairie, a car park, you then join a greenway with a hard surface for 5km. You follow the Seine’s banks to take you as far as the Châtelet des Tourelles.

Transilien stations

Transilien line J : Conflans- fin d’Oise, Andrésy, Poissy, Les Mureaux, Aubergenville-Elisabethville, Epone-Mezières

Don’t miss

  • La Maison de Claude Monet: This unique place offers a fabulous introduction to Normandy’s gardens and attracts those passionate about painting, flowers and colour generally. The Jardin de Claude Monet, so famed for its water lily ponds, its Japanese bridge and further exuberant features, reveals so many secretive aspects to visitors. It is open year-round. In spring, the tulip displays stand out. These are followed by irises, then roses in June… but the explosions of joyous colour around the garden continue on. After touring the garden, enjoy a visit inside Monet’s colourful house.
  • Musée de Vernon: The Musée de Vernon is organized around four main themes. The section dedicated to the Giverny artists’ colony displays Impressionist canvases, some donated by painters (such as Mary Fairchild MacMonnies Low and Theodore Butler, the latter Monet’s son-in-law) or those close to them, along with two stand-out Monet works: the tondo Les Nymphéas (Water Lilies) and Falaise à Pourville, effet de soleil couchant (Pourville Cliff, with sunset effects). The section devoted to Nabi artists contains two Seine-side landscapes by Pierre Bonnard, one of that Movement’s founders, and canvases by Maurice Denis and Felix Vallotton. The section on Steinlen shows one of the most important collections of works by Théophile-Alexandre Steinlen, a Swiss-French artist of the period. A further section traces developments in the way animals were represented in art through the 19th and 20th centuries.
  • Musée des Impressionnismes: A must-see Normandy museum, Giverny’s Musée des Impressionnismes invites you to plunge into Impressionism, that revolutionary art movement that challenged formal academic painting in the late 19th century. The place explores the origins, history and geographical variety of the movement, and how it then developed in further directions. It features not just Impressionist artists, but also precursors and followers, from the 19th century to the present day. Every year, two or three major exhibitions are put on here, along with concerts and workshops for adults and children alike.

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