First step: Vernon
At the gates of Nouvelle Normandie and Île-de-France, and surrounding the Seine, is the city of Vernon and its centuries of history.
On the left bank, you’ll find the most developed part of the city. Soak up the excitement of the historic centre (especially on market days!). Wander the streets and admire its timber frame houses. The right bank is by no means any less worthy of a visit, since you can photograph the city’s emblematic centrepiece, something which remains deeply rooted in the hearts of the city’s people. The Old Mill stands on an old medieval bridge over the Seine, very close to the Parc des Tourelles and its small castle; a perfect spot for a few minutes rest…or even a few hours!
The Seine, a source of inspiration
The Seine and the city of Vernon have been and remain a great source of inspiration for many impressionist and post-impressionist artists, including Claude Monet, who lived just a few kilometres away, in Giverny, for more than forty years. Some works by these artists are now on display at the Vernon Museum.
Take to the water!
From Vernon, you can also do your fill of outdoor activities! At the water sports centre, you can practice canoeing, sailing or even go for a walk along the Seine with the Ladybird or Oyster Bar.
Is cycling more your thing?
Get on your bike and take the road towards Giverny or Les Andelys. All on the Seine cycle route. Nestled between the river and hills, the ride is really worth the detour!
On the road to Les Andelys…
…in the hamlet of “Ma Campagne” you may be able to see the former home of the painter Pierre Bonnard. Nicknamed “My Caravan”, this modest house offered him a magnificent view of its lush garden and the Seine river, which he painted regularly. Continuing towards Les Andelys, you’ll pass the villages of Pressagny-l’Orgueilleux, Notre-Dame-de-l’Isle and Port-Mort, which will charm you with their history and heritage.
Did you know?
Blanche de Castille (the niece of Richard The Lionheart, and mother of Saint-Louis) was married in the Saint-Martin church in Port-Mort!
On the other bank,
the villages of La Chapelle-Longueville (Saint-Just, Saint-Pierre-d’Autils) have just as much charm thanks to their old stones and narrow streets. The “Les coteaux de la Chapelle-Longueville” cycling route will allow you to visit them in person and enjoy the exquisite panorama across the river from its balconies.
Unmissable: Les Andelys
Your journey along the Seine will take you to the town of Andelys, via Bouafles and Vézillon. Take the time to appreciate the unique beauty of “Petit-Andely”, its small shops, galleries, and towpath. You can’t leave without “climbing up” to Château-Gaillard, the famous fortress of Les Andelys. The medieval bastion of Richard the Lionheart proudly dominates the city and there are plenty of views over the Seine.
things to see in Les Andelys
Don’t hesitate to contact Dominique at Liberté Seine to organise a private cruise, departing from Les Andelys or Muids. A passionate captain, he will unveil all the secrets of the Seine.
Great climbing spots
Our descent down the river will end with the loop that starts from Les Andelys and leads to Vatteville. The limestone slopes of Thuit and La Roquette are recognised among seasoned climbing enthusiasts.
Are you just out for a walk? Be careful and avoid approaching the cliff.