Unfortunately, if you want to see the garden in bloom you will have to stomach the crowds. However, the earlier in the day you go, the better
Giverny is a commune in the north of France. It’s main claim to fame is that Monet once lived there. It is said that he noticed the picturesque village of Giverny while looking out a train window and decided right then to move there. In 1890 he bought a property and went about creating the magnificent gardens he would go on to paint.
He lived there until his death in 1926, in the house with the famous pink crushed brick façade. It has now become a museum open to the public after large-scale restoration work. The studio has been restored and the collection of precious Japanese prints has been returned to the rooms, hung as Monet himself intended.
What’s more, the gardens have been replanted as they were, and you must go in summer when the flowers are in bloom. You will recognise the scenes of some of his most famous paintings: the Japanese bridge over the pond, with water lilies, wisterias and azaleas, or the archways with climbing plants entwined around metal. The gardens are a masterpiece in their own right.
Elsewhere in Giverny, there is also the Museum of Impressionism which is dedicated to the history of the impressionist movement, of which Monet was a key proponent. For decades after his death, admiring artists would come to live and paint in Giverny as he did, giving rise to the Giverny art colony.
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