We realized that we couldn't just walk around the gardens at Monet's house forever and we eventually would need to eat, we set off to explore Giverny. Giverny has been a haven for artist, both French and American, for more than a century. It's a quiet little hamlet wedged between a hillside and the Seine surrounded by the Norman courntyside. Pretty much everyone who lives there seems to have a green thumb.
There's lots of quaint shops, galleries and cafes to check out and there seemed to be a plethora of adorable B&Bs if you cared to stay.
There's a simple old church at the end of town where Monet is buried.
We did find a few mapped trails in the area. We hiked around the meadows and hills while the clouds started to roll in. Having a few sunny hours in Normandy is pretty sweet, but you have to prepare yourself for the inevitable rainstorm. I guess that might be the price you pay to live in a place where the gardens are almost tropically lush.
It's not quite so mountainous to do a convincing Sound of Music reenactment, but I could try.
Another place to stop is the Musee des Impressionismes.
They had lovely color-coordinated gardens to explore. The museum itself was a well-organized walk through of the history of impressionist paintings and drawing and rotating exhibits. It was small- it probably took less than an hour to see everything- but well curated and doled out interesting bits of information.
We considered ourselves lucky that it started to rain as we were on the train platform to go home. The past couple weeks have started to actually feel downright summery here in Northern France. It's still a good idea to wear a sweater when you go out as it is far from broiling, but the sun has been appearing a bit more than it rains. It's a nice change as I was getting awfully tired of living under a waterspout.