Antiquity, countryside and history greet you in Annabel Simms’ book, “Half an Hour from Paris … 10 Secret Daytrips by Train”. First you have to find your way there. Annabel Simms arranges the book like a quality French baguette au levain sandwich: yummy ingredients between the crunchy crusts. This is a book of self-guided walking tours of various lengths.
An image on the front page of a Spanish newspaper showed the Seine flooding. This prompted a reader planning a Paris visit to inquire about the situation. Looking back at my photos from 2016, I had some evidence of the river a couple of days after its peak. Each year the Seine’s waters rise, usually as snow melts and reservoirs flood. This year, the Seine seems to be flooding a bit early from heavy rains. The last record for flooding was in June 2016. Le Zouave statue on the Pont de l’Alma is one of the gauges used. Legend says: “When the Zouave’s feet are under water, the Seine is flooded”. Authorities predict the Paris portion of the River Seine could reach 6,20 m by Saturday, January 27. The recent Paris Seine record is 2016 at 6,05-6,10 m.
The RATP (Paris transportation system) has highly upgraded their website. They provide clear information when you find it. Some pages are in English, French and Spanish. Others include German, Chinese, Japanese, Italian, Spanish, Dutch, Russian, Brazilian. How would a party of five find their way into Paris from the airport?
A day trip to Giverny is easy. The SNCF train from Gare Saint-Lazare takes you to Vernon/Giverny in 45 minutes. Rent a bike across from the train station and take your time pedaling to Giverny. The biggest piece of advice: buy your tickets in advance to Monet’s house. Follow the online ticket links at Foundation Claude Monet. Twenty minutes before departure in the direction of Rouen Rive Droite, the departing platform (voie) is posted. While you wait, enjoy the updated three-level shopping mall at Gare Saint-Lazare. If you want to “powder your nose” the “2theloo” spot is open from 6 am to midnight and is constantly being wiped down and freshened up. Hint on train ticket pricing
For 2017, the Château Champs-sur-Marne’s clothing exhibition is from the Belle Epoque through the Roaring Twenties (1890-1930) the exhibit closes September 12, 2017. For children, this Monuments Nationaux château has clothing to try on and a work sheet (in French) to answer questions and understand the exhibit. For adults, the 35-page booklet is filled with explanations (in French), color photos of clothing for women, men and children and accessories. The retrospective style years are 1900, 1909, 1912, 1921, 1925, 1930 and 1935.
Once again, a welcomed reader’s comments jiggled my chain for an update. This time about transportation to Auvers-sur-Oise. The Auvers-sur-Oise Tourist Office’s website has a page to keep us all current on how to reach the village by train, bus or car. Reach Auvers-sur-Oise from Paris using various methods: a private excursion tour, driving, train (30 minute ride), or the RER plus a bus. A special direct train runs the first Saturday of April to the first Sunday in November. Read more details about transportation….