How get to Normandy from Paris
Situated in the Northwest part of France and running along the Atlantic coastline, Normandy is arguably one of the most beautiful (and most-visited) regions in the country.
From the famous chalk cliffs of Etretat or the small-town charm of Honfleur to the impressive Mont Saint-Michel and the historic D-Day landing beaches, Normandy has long been a favorite escape for Parisians and visitors alike.
Whether you’re a nature lover, history buff, or Impressionism fan, there’s a little something for everyone in Normandy.
Here’s how to get to Normandy from Paris and make your journey simple.
Places of Interest in Normandy
Normandy is a huge region, so I’ve narrowed down some of the top places of interest here.
Probably one of the most popular destinations in France, the Mont-Saint-Michel island abbaye is a must-see in Normandy. The ancient village and monastery are a UNESCO world heritage site, but I won’t give away too much. You’ll have to discover this place for yourself!
The stunning chalk white cliffs of Etrétat have been immortalized for centuries by artists and painters (Monet did several paintings here) and still draw curious visitors today. The grassy plains above the cliffs make for an excellent scenic hike, and don’t forget to enjoy a picnic with a view.
Deauville is a seaside town situated on the Atlantic coast. Typically Norman, Deauville is full of charm. The casino, racetrack, film festival, and of course sandy beaches have been drawing affluent Parisians for centuries.
D-Day Landing Beaches
If you’re into history, you won’t want to miss visiting the historic D-Day beaches such as Utah Beach and Omaha Beach. You can also visit the World War II memorial and the American cemetery nearby.
Any Impressionism fans out there? If so, you won’t want to miss a visit to Claude Monet’s home and gardens at Giverny. You can tour the gardens, including the famous water lily pond. You can also visit the house and former artist studio, and maybe even find a little inspiration yourself.
Paris to Normandy via Train
So by far, the most popular way to get from Paris to Normandy is by train. There are dozens of trains each day for a whole list of destinations around Normandy. Generally, you can reserve tickets online via the SNCF website until the day of departure.
Most trains leaving from Paris center will put you in Normandy in 2-3 hours, so you’ll have plenty of time to enjoy. And try to snag a window seat if possible, the ride is usually quite scenic.
With affordable and efficient train service to places like Rouen, Deauville, Mont -Saint-Michel, and Etretat, it’s easy to head to Normandy for a day or weekend trip. Ticket prices generally range from €15-€40 one way, depending on the season and destination.
Paris to Normandy via Car
If you’re hoping for a scenic day trip, driving from Paris to Normandy is just the ticket. Not only is going to Normandy by car the easiest (and often quickest) way, but you’ll have more freedom to explore the region once you’ve arrived.
When traveling by car in France, you have two options: main highways with tolls, or smaller, local highways which are free.
The most popular and quickest route from Paris to Normandy is via the A13. Once on the A13, you can reach beaches at Deauville, Honfleur or Dieppe in just over two hours. Monet’s home and gardens at Giverny take just over an hour to reach, and you can drive to the Mont Saint-Michel in four hours. But keep in mind this is a toll road, and the amount you’ll have to pay correlates with the distance traveled.
If you don’t mind taking a little longer to reach your destination, the local highways are probably your best bet. And usually very picturesque too, compared to the toll roads.
Paris to Normandy via Bus
One easy and inexpensive way to travel from Paris to Normandy is via bus. This option takes a little longer than the train, but is generally a lot cheaper.
There are two main bus companies to choose from; Flixbus and BlaBlaBus (formerly Ouibus). Combined, the two companies offer dozens of journeys between Paris and Normandy daily. Generally the buses depart from Bercy, in the Paris city center and arrive in your destination’s central station.
Popular destinations in Normandy include La Havre, Deauville, Caen, and Etretat. All of these destinations are similar distances from Paris, and ticket prices usually don’t vary much from city to city. For example, you can take a bus to Caen round trip for under €10, and the journey is 3.5 hours each way.
Paris to Normandy via Bicycle
If you’re up for a little challenge, why not try biking from Paris to Normandy? The Véloscenic bike trail runs 442 kilometers from Notre-Dame in Paris all the way to the Mont Saint-Michel in Normandy.
The Véloscenic route follows carefully designated cycle paths for its entirety. Plus, you’ll pass through places of interest like Chartres and the stunning Chevreuse Valley. This route is suitable for cyclists of all levels, but most people take anywhere from 4-10 days to complete the Véloscenic.
And just because you’re biking doesn’t mean roughing it! There are also plenty of dining and accommodation options available along the way.
Well, now you know how to get from Paris to Normandy a few different ways. I hope you’ve enjoyed this article.
See you soon in Paris, or maybe Normandy!