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A visit to Monet's garden in Giverny

Updated: May 6

Claude Monet is considered the most famous Impressionist painter. In Giverny you can visit his colorful house and his wonderful garden. Here he painted the famous water lilies.

Claude Monet painter impressionism Giverny France water lily pond bridge

Now in spring, Monet's garden is an incredible splendor: tulips, irises, forget-me-nots, lilacs, crown imperials and fruit trees are all in full bloom. You don't have to be a painter to be amazed by the colors here.

Getting up early is worth it!

If you get up early, you can enjoy the grounds and the house without the crowds. From 10 a.m. onwards, you have to queue up as visitors from all over the world flock to the garden. Everyone wants a photo on the famous bridge over the lily pond.

The painter is considered the figurehead of Impressionism . This is also due to the fact that he lived a long life and travelled a lot - over time he was able to develop his style further and make a name for himself.

Monet's famous water lily paintings, which he painted in his garden in Giverny towards the end of his life, are considered his masterpiece.

Klick on the first picture to start the photo story

Colorful house, flowers in Monet's garden

His great-grandson Philippe Piguet says that he used to fish in this pond. After Monet's death, his great-aunt Blanche Hoschedé Monet lived alone in the big house with the even bigger garden. Whereas a whole horde of gardeners used to look after the property, she now had only one person.

The garden soon became overgrown. Over the next 50 years, the garden fell into disrepair and was not cared for again until the Fondation Claude Monet took it over. Philippe says that after the house had been renovated, he asked his mother if it had really been so colorful, and she replied:

“All the rooms were so colorful.”

Lunch at the Ancien Hôtel Baudy

Close by is the Baudy restaurant, which also used to serve as an inn.

The Impressionists' style was not initially successful in France. People did not understand modernism. The Americans were different: they and art dealers who had become rich with cotton and coffee, such as Olivier Senn and Paul Durand-Ruel, made the Impressionists famous.

Giverny is still the quiet, rural village where Claude Monet settled in 1883 when American painters discovered him with enthusiasm. In the spring of 1887, several overseas artists turned to Madame Baudy's small café/grocery store in search of accommodation. She did not rent rooms, but there was no hotel in the village. She decided to convert her grocery store into a hotel.

A stroke of luck for today's visitors too. After visiting the gardens and museum, you can relax over lunch in the cozy restaurant inside or in the wonderful beer garden outside.

Art also in Rouen

Sometimes you need to look at the outside mirror to see what values are inside, says Florence Calamé-Levert, curator at the Musée des Beaux-Arts in Rouen, where many impressionist paintings hang. It was only after the artists had attracted so much attention abroad that they were recognized in France from the 1880s onwards.

In my next blog post I will take a painting course on the coast of Normandy.

You can find more travel ideas for France here.


The 150th anniversary will be celebrated with its own festival. Exhibitions and events will take place in many cities and museums. All information at

Wibke Helfrich Monet's garden and house Giverny, France

The House and Gardens of Claude Monet - Giverny are open every day from March 29, 2024 to November 1, 2024 from 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Last admission at 5:30 p.m.

My tip: either be there at 9:30 or arrive around five. Apparently 4:00 in the afternoon is a good time on the weekend.

The exhibition "Impressionism and the sea" is taking place at the Museum of Impressionism in Giverny until June 30th.

getting there

The railway was an important means of transport for the Impressionists. The train journey from Heidelberg to Paris takes less than 4 hours.

The train from Paris to Vernon/Giverny takes one hour.

To get to Monet's garden, you can either take the bus or rent a bike and cycle the 6 km along a bike path along the Seine. For example, at:

Ancien Hôtel Baudy Giverny Beer Garden


On the heights of Giverny, on the edge of forests and orchards, lies the old manor house La Réserve with five wonderful, nostalgic rooms, all with a view of the garden and a cottage. Double room with breakfast from €240.

The Hôtel Littéraire Gustave Flaubert is located in a quiet courtyard in the old town of Rouen. All rooms are individually decorated with quotes from Gustave Flaubert, who was born here. Double rooms from €130.


L'ancien Hôtel Baudy in Giverny was created from a greengrocer's shop when the first Americans came to the village to follow in the footsteps of Claude Monet. The restaurant with beer garden is a work of art in itself. Make a reservation.

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