A Heaven of Peacefulness

July 21, 2020

The pandemic is clearly a disaster for tourism, but it has some positive effects. At Giverny, the few visitors of 2020 can enjoy Monet’s gardens in a way that had long been forgotten.

Last year had been a new record year with 715 000 visitors coming from all over the world. During the last decade, the painter’s little paradise had won a reputation of being over crowded. If not every day, it was often the case.

This was in the past, up to 2019. The corona changed it all, reducing the number of visitors drastically to a mere 15% of the previous years visits.

Visitors must wear a mask, sure. They must also buy advance tickets on line. A very limited amount of tickets are for sale. And not a single group over 5 people is accepted.

As a result, touring Monet’s gardens and house has never been that comfortable, with nobody to shrub shoulders with. It is all one way to ensure physical distancing. On the way back after walking around the pond, staff help people over the road to the flower garden. Visitors enter the house by the studio, which is great.

When, by any chance, I give a guided tour in the gardens, this year it is always a private tour. It is easy to find a spot where to stay and talk. We take our time. No rush. The gardens are gorgeous.

I’ve been there a dozen of times this year. Instead of around 200 the previous ones, when the gardens opened in March and admitted all the visitors willing to enter.

Each time was a feast. And at the same time it broke my heart, because I can’t live anymore from this job I love.

Monet’s gardens open June 8

May 28, 2020

Roses are at their peak at Giverny

At last the date is known: Fondation Monet will open again to visitors within ten days, on Monday June 8 at 9.30 am. Previous purchase of tickets online will be mandatory, and possible from May 29 on. Access will be denied to people without tickets or not wearing a face mask.
Entry will be through the former ‘group entrance’ in Ruelle Leroy. Visitors will have to follow a one way path and keep off from other people (at least 1 meter away). All this sounds only natural and logical due to the pandemic. Good news, guided tours are allowed! Hope to see you soon at Giverny!

This Special 2020 Spring

April 26, 2020

While everybody is staying at home, Monet’s garden glows.

The gardeners are the only ones to enjoy the beauty of the tulips.

The weather has been exceptional this month. Since the first self-isolation day on March 17, it has rained only once at Giverny. At night.

The gardeners must water, for flowers wouldn’t stand it that long in the drought. They work as usual, standing apart. A strange mood floats in the air, made of quietness, disappointment and worries. They miss the visitors, they feel concerned by health issues and by the future.

The Foundation Monet won’t accept groups in 2020. When reopening will be allowed, it will be for individuals only. If we look to the bright side of life, we can forecast there won’t be any crowds in Monet’s gardens and house this year, which will make the tour even nicer.

Giverny still closed

April 1, 2020

The season’s opening is traditionally April 1st at Giverny, but this year the gardens created by Monet will stay closed, at least until May 1st. Is it necessary to explain why?

There are very few cases of coronavirus in the area, but the rule is the same everywhere in France : we must stay at home.

If the pandemic peak is over by May 1st, it will be in time to see the beauty of the wisteria covered footbridge designed by Monet.

Stay safe and take good care!

Im Monet’s Bedroom

February 21, 2020

Claude Monet was a huge fan of Paul Cézanne. When the master of Giverny eventually became successful and rich, he started collecting eagerly the most beautiful works of his less renowned yet 10 year older friend.
Copies of these masterpieces are now exhibited in Monet’s bedroom at Giverny. The originals were either sold by Monet’s son, or now belong to the collections of Musée Marmottan-Monet in Paris.