21st to 28th MAY 2018

8 days, 7 nights

3 nights in Paris, 4 nights in Maisons-Laffitte

Led By – Norman Peterken, Carol Mantle & Anne Cattle

DAY 1 Monday 21st May


Bus transfer to Valencia Airport.

Flight to Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport.

Bus transfer to Citadines Montmartre for a 3 night stay on a room only basis.

After checking in, the rest of the day is free for you to explore Paris independently. Lounge around the Canal Saint Martin, climb the Eiffel Tower, walk around Notre Dame cathedral, walk around the Arc de Triomphe, visit the Marais quarter, walk around the Luxembourg Gardens, climb up to the Sacré Coeur or walk along the Champs-Élysées.



Citadines Montmartre is located in a residential area near Place de Clichy at the foot of the Butte Montmartre. It offers furnished studio apartments just a 10-minute metro ride from the Champs Elysées. Overlooked by Montmartre, the district is known for its vines, alleyways and steps leading up to the Sacré-Coeur basilica. The apartments are equipped with a kitchen area. Breakfast is not included because it is more sensible to make use of the kitchen area or a local café.


Day 2 Tuesday 22nd May




We will have a bus transfer to the terminus of the Batobus service. From there, we will cruise along the River Seine to the Musee D’Orsay.

A full day pass on the batobus service is included.





Musee D’Orsay houses art works from the 19th and 20th centuries. It has an unrivaled collection of Impressionist masterpieces, Art Nouveau and Symbolism, and a hallway with magnificent sculptures. They provide a broad panorama of French and European art from 1848 to 1914.

Entrance and your choice of 6 different audioguides are included.

The rest of the day is free for independent sightseeing.


DAY 3 Wednesday 23rd May


B91N50 Monet gallery in Musee de l'Orangerie Paris. Image shot 02/2009. Exact date unknown.
Monet gallery in Musee de l’Orangerie Paris

We will have a bus transfer to the Orangerie Museum, located in the former greenhouse of the Tuileries Garden. In impressively-sized rooms, this museum presents a series of large “Water Lilies” paintings which are masterpieces by Monet. The basement houses the Jean Walter and Paul Guillaume collections which are dedicated to the great names of the 20th century including Renoir, Cezanne, Matisse, Picasso, Soutine, Utrillo. Entrance and audioguide are included. The rest of the day is free for independent sightseeing.


Day 4 Thursday 24th May




In Marly le Roi Museum, discover the other older palace of Louis 14th, one that has disappeared. A breathtaking and intimate place where his court came to revel. The collections tell the story of the domain and its evolution during the reign of Louis 15th and Louis 16th. A part of the trail is devoted to the famous “Machine of Marly”, 8th marvel of the world, made to bring water to the fountains of Marly and Versailles.







A visit to Paris is not complete without a visit to the Palace of Versailles. This impressive estate, originally a hunting lodge built for Louis 13th, was converted by his son Louis 14th into a symbol of absolute monarchy: boasting extravagant facades, elaborate furnishings and the magnificent 2,000 acres Garden of Versailles.









See the fabulous Hall of Mirrors, scene of the signing of the 1919 peace treaty at the end of World War One, and the sumptuous royal suites with their original decoration dating from 1662.







Surrounding the palace are the formal gardens, an immense park filled with fountains and statues dating from the reign of Louis 14th, the aptly named “Sun King”. In addition, there are the Grand Trianon, Petit Trianon and Marie Antoinette’s Estate.

In addition to entry and headphones for the guided tour of the palace, we have included transport on the ‘toy train’ to access the different parts of the gardens.



We contine to Maisons-Laffitte to check in at the Cerise Maisons-Laffitte for a 4 night stay on a bed and breakfast basis. This classic apartment hotel in a modern building is 4 minutes’ walk from the River Seine and 8 minutes’ walk from Maisons-Laffitte RER train station from where it is a 20 minute journey to Central Paris. Chic studios come with kitchenettes, free WiFi and flat-screen TVs.


Day 5 Friday 25th May






Giverny is situated on the river Epte, a tributary to the Seine river. This is a chance to visit the charming house and spectacular gardens that inspired the famous French painter Claude Monet.









It was there that he lived for 43 years, from 1883 to 1926. As one of the great innovators of the French Impressionist period, some of his best known masterpieces were painted in the English garden surrounding his house together with the water lilies on the pond.

This tour includes a visit to Monet’s studio, the house, gardens, and the water garden with the famous Japanese bridge.






We cross the river to visit the picturesque town of Vernon. It is valued for the presence of its peaceful river, its lime-tree lined avenues, its ancient streets and half-timbered houses.




On our return journey, we will visit the beautiful village of La Roche Guyon. In La Roche Guyon, standing against the chalk cliff since the Middle Ages, dominating a loop of the Seine river, its surprising castle has always intrigued visitors. From the medieval keep to the 18th century stables, from the first cave dwellings to the vegetable garden of the “Lumieres”, from the reception rooms to the casemates fitted out by Rommel, the castle is a lesson in architecture.



Day 6 Saturday 26th May




Barbizon lies on the edge of Fontainebleau forest. It gave its name to the Barbizon school of painters. Jean-Francois Millet, Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot and Theodore Rousseau were the nucleus of an artistic movement that lasted from about 1830 to 1860. They revived the art of landscape painting, paving the way for the Impressionists who arrived in the forest 30 years later.






We will visit both Auberge Ganne, home of the Museum of the Barbizon School, for an audio-visual presentation and …..







…the Maison Atelier de Theadore Rousseau. Théodore Rousseau’s former home and studio houses the museum’s temporary exhibitions.






We continue to Fontainebleu Chateau. The Castle of Fontainebleau was built in the 12th century by King Francis the 1st, the king who brought Renaissance aesthetics to France. It introduced to France the Italian mannerist style in interior decoration and in patterned gardens, hence creating a style known as the “Fontainebleau style”. It was continuously inhabited by the kings until the Empire and Napoleon.






This castle can proudly claim to have been a sovereign residence for eight centuries. Capetiens, Valois, Bourbons, Bonaparte and Orleans, all members of French ruling dynasties, have lived within these walls. Kings and queens, emperors and empresses have all striven to make their own improvements to the castle built around the original keep. The estate quickly became a huge palace in which many historical events took place.

Entrance and a videoguide to the Grands Appartements are included so that you can look round at your own pace.







Our final visit is to Moret-sur-Loing, located at the edge of the Fontainebleau forest. It is an ancient medieval stronghold right at the frontier of the Ile de France and the Burgundy region. The town displays a rich and preserved architectural patrimony. With its river the “Loing” and its bucolic landscapes, Moret-sur-Loing inspired many impressionist painters of the region and was the home of Alfred Sisley, one of the leading Impressionists. Stroll in the narrow streets and admire the famous architectural styles of this historic town.




Day 7 Sunday 27th May





Pisarro, one of the leading Impressionists, made Pontoise his home. In the Pisarro museum, enjoy collections dedicated to the landscapers for whom there has been a steady acquisition policy since the Museum opened on the 150th anniversary of the birth of the master. These exhibitions feature works by Pissarro and his sons Lucien, Georges and Ludovic-Rodo









We then make a short journey to Château d’Auvers-sur-Oise. It was built in the seventeenth century, around 1635 by Zanobi Lioni, a wealthy Italian of the entourage of Marie de Medici. The palace then had a roof terrace in the Italian style, harmonious gardens inspired by the Villa d’Este in Tivoli, basins and fountains, two orangeries and a gazebo overlooking the village and the valley of the Oise. In 1756, the building underwent a complete transformation: the north face of Louis XIII style was maintained, but the south façade was rebuilt, and the whole flanked by two pavilions.




The Chateau d’Auvers offers a multimedia journey, ‘Voyage au Temps des Impressionistes’ where you can relive the bright, colourful era of Monet, Renoir, Pissarro, etc. You make your way through the different rooms of the chateau, all with reconstructed decor and atmospheres reminiscent of the Impressionists’ favourite themes. There are more than 500 paintings set to motion, visual and sound effects, popular music and songs of the time.






Auvers sur Oise was Van Gogh’s final home before his death in 1890. We will enjoy a short walk to visit some of the locations that Van Gogh painted and …





 Auberge Ravoux. It is known as the House of Van Gogh because the Dutch painter spent the last 70 days of his life as a lodger at the auberge. During his stay at Auvers, Van Gogh created more than 80 paintings and 64 sketches before shooting himself in the chest on 27 July 1890 and dying two days later on 29 July 1890. The auberge has been restored and is now a museum











The final visit of our trip will be to Chatou. It is located on an island in the Seine and was favoured by many of the leading Impressionists, including Monet. It is, however, most well known as the location of many paintings by Renoir.








We will visit Musee Fournaise where Renoir painted his famous Luncheon of the Boating Party. The museum maintains a collection on the history of the sites, and this prosperous era along the banks of the Seine in the second half of the 19th century. Paintings and artists’ mementoes, engravings and prints evoking the era of rowing, a collection of row boats, sail boats and steam boats: the joyous and carefree spirit of the Impressionist period is brought back to life.



Day 8 Monday 28th May

Bus transfer to Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport.

Flight to Valencia.

Bus transfer to Moraira.


All flights, hotel accommodation, transfers, all of the entrances to the art galleries and museums mentioned in the Trip description and a full days pass on the batobus service on the River Seine are included in the costs of the Trip.



The cost of the trip will be approximately 900 euros


The single room supplement will be approximately 350 euros

Prices are approximate because the prices quoted have been 2016 prices.

We have allowed for a 6% increase in prices.

The prices of the flights to and from Paris are an estimate.

The exact price cannot be determined until the flights are booked in June/July 2017.


To secure a place on this trip, please pay a deposit of €250 at the Travel Desk at the next general meeting.

If you are unable to get to a General Meeting please contact Carol Mantle.