We took the morning train from Gare-St-Lazare to Vernon Station,only 45 minutes,from where a shuttle bus delivers you to Giverny. The carpark, one of five, removes any allusion about sharing this quiet hamlet by yourself. Sixteen,giant tourist- transporters have already disgorged their occupants.....oohhh,what the hell,you are here,are you not?.......yes,it is a very popular spot!
This is the home of the brilliant innovator Monet who excelled at presenting the effect of light at different times of the day. His paintings of the Rouen Cathedral and the Water Lilies are just a few of his masterpieces.
Unfortunately,you wont find any original Monet paintings here.However,his house and famous gardens are open to view. The house,itself is not overwhelming, but contains his collections of 18th and 19th century prints and furnishings....pleasant,but not the Monet you seek!!
Through the windows you spy glimpses of his wonderfully colorful garden. Step,outside the house and wander through the magic that creative greenery offers. Thousands of flowers greet you as you stroll , meander and stoop ,to examine these wonderful specimens. But,its when you reach 'the bridge' that your heart flutters, because this is the holy grail for the settings that formed the series of water lilies. Beautiful and spiritual, in many ways ,even on a cloudy and rainy day. As you enjoy and exhilarate at the beauty of wispy trees around the bridge. try to envisage all those art books that drew you here. Incomparable!!
Its all here.The red bridge,hung with wisteria,leads to a setting of weeping willows and rhododendrons. If this does not move you...you must be constipated.
wander around the pretty village with every house sharing a preplanned color scheme. Very pleasant. So the important Question now, is where to ingest food,because art and jardins create cravings. Give the local tourist- trap eateries the flick, and head back into town,where near the church you will find, L'esquisse Gourmande....a tea salon and restaurant.
Read my review in the restaurant section. Bon appetite.
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