7 Best Day Trips from Paris: History, Wine, and Grandeur

Best Day Trips from Paris Pin

Looking for the best day trips from Paris?

Without a doubt, the French capital hides a ton of attractions and activities. But what about the countryside?

Leave the hustle of the big city and venture outside its limits to explore more of France.

On this list, you’ll find 7 epic day tours from Paris. Join them and learn about places and events, which changed modern history. Explore the gardens that inspired famous painters. And seduce your palate with exquisite wines and delectable dishes. 

Ready for the best day trips from Paris?

Let’s explore!

Short on time? Book my recommended day tour from Paris here:

Explore the UNESCO-listed Versailles Palace and Gardens

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1. Versailles: Dive into the Grandeur of the French Classicism

Best Day Trips from Paris - Versailles Palace
Versailles Palace is easily reached making it one of the best day trips from Paris

Visiting Versailles Palace is one of the easiest day trips from Paris.

One of the largest and most famous palaces in the world invites you to explore its 700+ rooms. The State Apartments, the King’s Bedroom, and the Hall of Mirrors are just some of the architectural highlights of the Versailles Palace.

The Palace was used by Louis XIII. His son, Louis XIV, transformed and expanded it. He then moved the royal court and the government of France to Versailles in 1682.

Versailles Palace grew from a simple hunting lodge to the center of the French monarchy within a few decades.

Best Day Trips from Paris - Versailles Palace Hall of Mirrors
You can explore the Hall of Mirrors in Versailles Palace on a day trip from Paris

Discover the UNESCO World Heritage monument and journey back to the pre-French Revolution days. See how the French royalties bathed in opulence before the people overthrew them. After you’ve marveled at the dazzling Hall of Mirrors and the splendid State Apartments, follow in the footsteps of Louis XIV by strolling in the spectacular gardens of The Sun King.

With the pre-booked Paris tours of Versailles, you’ll be able to breeze through security and avoid the lines. Still, keep in mind that all those queueing people will eventually get in and fill the rooms of the palace. Therefore, come to Versailles as early as possible in the morning.

The palace’s opening hours are from 9:30 AM to 5:30 PM. The gardens open half an hour earlier and close half an hour later.

Some of the tours include a guide while others offer you an interactive multimedia solution.

Keep in mind that not all day trips from Paris include transportation to the Versailles Palace. However, it’s easy to hop on a train and reach the majestic palace in about 30 minutes.

✔️ Tip: Visit Versailles Palace on a Tuesday or during the weekend. The spectacular musical fountain show happens on these days from April to October.

 📍 Day trip from Paris to Versailles with transportation: The best option to visit Versailles Palace on a day trip from Paris.

 📍 Quick 90-minute tour of the palace: See all the highlights of the Versailles Palace hustle-free with a skip-the-lines ticket.

2. Giverny: Walk Through Gardens That Inspired Famous Masterpieces

Best Day Trips from Paris - Monet’s Garden, Giverny
One of the best Paris day trips for art lovers is to Giverny

Giverny is a small town just about an hour and a half away from Paris. Leave the buzzing capital behind and enjoy a scenic drive to Normandy. Discover the home of the Father of Impressionism, Claude Monet.

The famous gardens, which inspired Monet’s paintings, invite you to take a stroll.

Weeping willows shade the water garden. Vibrant wisterias, azaleas, and small ponds full of waterlilies make you forget the outside world. You would feel like walking inside Monet’s incredible world of color and joy.

Stand on the famous Japanese bridge before stepping into the quaint charm of Monet’s home. Inside, you can admire the precious collection of Japanese engravings.

On the way out, stop at the Studio Nympheas, home to the Foundation’s Shop, and pick up a souvenir.

Best Day Trips from Paris - Monet’s House, Giverny
Explore Monet’s House in Giverny on a day trip from Paris

Afterwards, wander around the Giverny village. It attracted many American artists between 1883 and 1920, and they formed an important artists’ colony.

 📍 Monet’s House and Gardens, and the Museum of Impressionism by minibus: Discover the landscapes, which inspired Monet’s greatest works.

 📍 Monet’s House and Gardens by train and bike: Join a bike excursion from Paris. Tour Monet’s gardens, his house, and the picturesque Vernon and Giverny.

3. Mont-Saint-Michel: Marvel at Ancient Fortifications

Best Day Trips from Paris - Mont-Saint-Michel
One of the most epic day trips from Paris is to the mind-boggling Mont-Saint-Michel

Mont-Saint-Michel Abbey is one of the first UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Visiting this mind-boggling place is one of the most epic day trips from Paris.

The worship of Saint Michel on the holy mount started in 708. Soon it became one of the most important places of pilgrimage. Benedictine monks began the construction of the abbey in the 10th century.

Mont-Saint-Michel survived the assaults of man, time, and nature. The heroic resistance to the English attacks during the Hundred Years’ War in the 14th and 15th centuries made it a symbol of French national identity.

Monks left the abbey in 1790. It became a historic monument a century later. Continuous restoration works aim to return the Mont-Saint-Michel abbey to its former glory.

On a day trip from Paris to Mont-Saint-Michel, you can explore the site at your own pace. An information booklet will help you learn the fascinating history of the abbey.

✔️ Tip: Due to the location of Mont-Saint-Michel abbey on an island, the high tides might affect the opening hours. Furthermore, it’s best to visit Mont St. Michel before 10 AM – or not at all!

 📍 Entrance ticket to Mont-Saint-Michel Abbey: Discover the UNESCO World Heritage site at your own pace on this budget-friendly, self-exploration visit.

 📍 Guided tour with lunch and transfer to Mont-Saint-Michel: Explore the history and culture of Normandy as you travel from Paris to the village of Mont-Saint-Michel.

4. Normandy D-Day Beaches: Journey Through Europe’s WWII Heritage

Day Trips From Paris - Utah Beach Landing Site Museum, Hangar B-26
Explore Utah Beach Landing Site Museum – Hangar B-26 on a day trip from Paris (Image credit: WikiCommons)

This glorious day trip from Paris will take you to several places where the face of modern Europe was shaped.

Explore the beautiful Normandy countryside and tour the D-Day landing sites. Discover the rich traditions of Normandy and tease your taste buds at a typical cider and calvados farm.

This is one of the most emotional day trips from Paris for many travelers. The tour will lead you to the historical battlefields and landing beaches along the Atlantic coast. 

A stop at the Utah Beach Landing Museum is a must for any history buff. An original German bunker on the beach where the first American troops landed houses the museum.

In the museum, you can learn about the complicated planning behind Operation Overlord. Hear the touching stories of ordinary men and women whose actions shaped the face of Europe. Admire unparalleled views over Utah Beach from the museum. Then, explore one of the few remaining B-26 aircrafts in the world.

Afterward, stop at a traditional cider-making orchard. Seduce your palate with exquisite ciders and apple brandies, the famous calvados. Next, enjoy a Normandy-style lunch of freshly prepared seasonal produce in a restaurant overlooking the port of Grandcamp Maisy.

After lunch, travel to Pointe du Hoc to see the German cliff-top defense that US Rangers heroically took during the D-Day landings. Overlooking the English Channel, the site remains much as it was over half a century ago. You can still see the original German fortifications and the crater scars, made by the bombs.

Best Day Trips from Paris - Omaha Beach Memorial
Visit the Omaha Beach Memorial on the most touching Paris day tour

Pay your respects to the fallen at the American Cemetery at Colleville-sur-Mer overlooking Omaha Beach. It’s the final resting place of Theodore Roosevelt, Jr., son of President Roosevelt. The Medal of Honour recipient is buried here, along with almost 10,000 brave fellow soldiers.

Last but not least, enter the Omaha Beach Visitor Centre to learn what went wrong during the Omaha Beach landings.

 📍 Guided tour of the Mémorial de Caen Museum and the D-day Landing Beaches: Explore the key WWII sites of Normandy. Lunch is included but no transfer from Paris.

 📍 Tour from Paris to the D-day Landing Beaches and Mémorial de Caen Museum: See the famous Landing Beaches of Normandy on a full-day trip from Paris. The tour includes lunch, tastings, and transportation from Paris.

5. Loire Valley Castles: Explore Fairytale-Like Architecture

Best Day Trips from Paris - Chateau de Chenonceau
Chateau de Chenonceau in the Loire Valley is one of the best spots to visit on a day tour from Paris

A tour of the Loire Valley is like wandering in a fairytale land. This is definitely one of the most romantic day trips from Paris.

The tours usually show you three different castles before taking you back. Have in mind, that Loire Valley is home to more castles than you can ever see on a day trip from Paris!

✔️ Tip: To fully appreciate the valley’s beauty, you’ll need more than a day to explore the castles. If your schedule allows it, plan to spend a few days in the Loire Valley.

Walk in the flower gardens of the Château de Chenonceau, and gaze at the delicate arches that cross the Cher River. The palace is also known as the Chateau des Dames because several extraordinary women played major roles in its history.

The castle was built in 1513 by Catherine Briconnet, embellished by Diane de Poitiers and Catherine de Medici, and saved from destruction during the French Revolution by Madame Dupin.

Continue to Chambord to explore the largest castle of the Loire Valley.

Best Day Trips from Paris - Chambord Castle
Another amazing place in the Loire Valley to visit on a Paris day trip is Chambord Castle

Marvel at the extravagant architecture and double-spiralled staircase of the royal Château de Chambord. The most majestic castle of the Loire Valley features a whopping 365 chimneys, 440 rooms, 14 staircases, and 800 turrets. They reflect the extravagant architecture of the French Renaissance.

Additionally, hundreds of columns and spires adorn its roof. The elaborate roofline resembles the skyline of a big city. The castle also features an intricate stone staircase, designed by Leonardo da Vinci.

End the day at the former home of King François I. See the tomb of Leonardo da Vinci in the Amboise village and the Château d’Amboise. Confiscated by the monarchy in the 15th century, it was a favorite royal residence.

Best Day Trips from Paris - Chateau de Cheverny
Don’t miss Chateau de Cheverny on your day trip from Paris to Loire Valley

Alternatively, visit Château de Cheverny. This castle will enchant you with its elegant décor. 17th-century furniture and Old Master paintings prove the sophisticated taste of its owners. The countless rooms of the chateau reflect a highly refined style, particularly the King’s Chamber, the Dining Room, and the Arms Room.

 📍 Full-day Loire Valley Castles trip from Paris: Join a 12-hour, small-group day tour to the grandiloquent Renaissance castles of Chenonceau, Chambord, and Amboise.

 📍 Full-day Loire Valley Castles tour from Paris: Take a day trip from Paris to visit the fairy-tale-like castles of the Loire Valley, Chambord, Blois, and Chenonceau.

6. Champagne Wine Tour: Seduce Your Palate with Exquisite Tastings

Best Day Trips from Paris - Hautvillers
Don’t miss Hautvillers on one of the most epic day trips from Paris for wine lovers

One of the best luxury day trips from Paris will take you to the world-renowned region of Champagne.

300 years ago, Dom Perignon pioneered the production methods, which made champagne the famous drink it is today. Spend your time on a day trip to the Benedictine Abbey in Hautvillers and explore the prominent winemaker’s workshop.

Visit the abbey and see where the wine-maker worked. Learn about the dangers of exploding wine bottles. The search to stop this phenomenon inspired many of Perignon’s innovations.

Pass by historic vineyards and villages. Enjoy the beautiful countryside while learning the region’s fascinating history. See how Champagne is made and meet local producers at some of the best Champagne houses.

Best Day Trips from Paris - Champagne Vineyards
The Champagne Vineyards are one of the coolest Paris day tours

Next, stop at a family-run winery. Discover how the family has been producing its sparkling champagne for three generations. After lunch, step into the cave of Moët et Chandon beneath the famous Avenue de Champagne. There, you’ll enjoy a tour and several tastings.

After a delectable lunch, including a digestive, you’ll continue with the tour. Finish this luxury day trip from Paris with another tasting before heading back to the French capital.

 📍 Luxury small-group Champagne tour: Enjoy 8 wine tastings, explore the Champagne region, and devour a delectable lunch on this luxury day trip from Paris.

7. Disneyland Paris: Provoke Your Inner Child

Best Day Trips from Paris - Disneyland
Disneyland is one of the top day trips from Paris for the whole family

Enter the fairytale land of Disney’s characters, excellent entertainment, and attractions for the whole family. Located close to Paris, Disneyland invites you to awaken your inner child and enjoy an unforgettable ride.

The Magical Kingdom of Disney offers endless fun in five magical lands. Experience your favorite stories from classic Disney films. Here’s where fairytales come true.

The thrills and rides at Disneyland Park, Paris come in all shapes and sizes. Big Thunder Mountain and Space Mountain Mission 2 offer a rush for grown-ups. The little ones can sail around the globe at It’s a Small World. Find extraordinary family fun in every corner of the Park, from the Pirates of the Caribbean to the Mad Hatter’s Tea Cups.

Don’t miss the main attraction, a meet and greet with the beloved Disney characters. On top of all the wonderful attractions and characters, there are tons of spectacular family parades and shows to enjoy all year round.

 📍 Day Pass, Flexible Day Pass, or Multi-Day Pass: Enjoy a magical time at Disneyland Park, or get a 2-park ticket to visit Walt Disney Studios Park as well.

 📍 Ticket and shuttle bus: Hop aboard the Disneyland Paris Express shuttle bus for a magical day out for the whole family. The tour includes transport and entrance tickets.

 📍 Ticket and train transfer: Add a new element of fun to your Paris visit and head to Disneyland Paris and/or Walt Disney Studios on a 1-day ticket. Travel by train.

FAQs About the Best Day Trips from Paris

Versailles Paris
Don’t skip roaming the gigantic gardens of Versailles Palace on your day trip from Paris, even on a rainy day

What is the most popular day trip from Paris?

The easiest and most popular day trip to Paris is to Versailles Palace. You can reach the UNESCO World Heritage site in about 30 min by train. Buy your skip-the-line ticket in advance to buzz through security or join a guided tour with included transportation to optimize your time.

Where else can I visit from Paris?

You can explore the French countryside and many of the big French cities on day trips from Paris. The most popular Paris tours include Versailles Palace, Giverny, Mount Saint Michel, Normandy, and Loire Valley. You can also travel to Amsterdam, Brussels, and London for a day, using high-speed trains.

Where can I take a train to from Paris?

You can take a train to Versailles Palace, Giverny, Disneyland Paris, and the Champagne region on a Paris day trip. You can also go to Amsterdam, Brussels, and London for a day, using high-speed trains.

Gare de Nord Paris Day Trips
You can take a high-speed train from Gare de Nord to go on a Paris day trip

Can I do a day trip to Amsterdam from Paris?

It’s possible to do a day trip from Paris to Amsterdam by train or plane. The train journey is between 3:19 and 3:30 hours in every direction. The flights take 1:10 to 1:25 hours but you need to include the airport transfers and waiting times as well.

Can I do a day trip to Brussels from Paris?

Yes, you can do a day trip from Paris to Brussels. By train, your travel time will be 1:22 hours (in each direction). By car or bus, you’ll need between 3:30 and 4:00 hours each way. And flights only take 55 min but calculate the airport transfers and security checks, too.

Can I do a day trip to London from Paris?

Yes, doing a day trip from Paris to London is possible. The train ride takes 2:30 hours on average. Flights are between 1:00 and 1:30 hours plus airport transfer times and waiting for boarding.

Explore France on the Best Day Trips From Paris

Champagne Region Luxury Day Trip from Paris
Visiting the Champagne region is one of the best luxury day trips from Paris

Although Paris offers a myriad of (unusual) things to do, leaving the French capital for a day trip or two should be on your travel list as well.

Whether you’re a history buff, interested in the opulent Renaissance architecture and the World War II battles, an art and champagne aficionado, or a Peter Pan searching for a thrill rollercoaster ride, these day trips from Paris will show you a different and amazing side of France.

So, tell me:

Which of the best tours from Paris inspired you the most?

Let me know in the comments below!


  1. Merry Jo Binkley says:

    This makes me want to book a trip! Great information. Thanks.

  2. jojo vito says:

    I love historical places. and the grand structures in your post simply ignites the traveler’s fire in me. So beautiful.

  3. Pingback: Top 10 things to do in Paris – My Sky List

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