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Sunday, 12 January 2014

Claude Monet

The estate of Claude Monet

Situated in Giverny, near Paris lies the Claude Monet house and garden. A large property beautifully landscaped with the famous lily pond and an abundance of flowers. It is a wonderful experience to walk the garden paths and take in the beauty and aroma of the many varieties of plants in bloom.

The large house is open to the public and wonderfully decorated. Each room has its own colour scheme. The kitchen is tiled in blue and white and the dining room is yellow. The living room is a calming light blue. Photography is not permitted in the house, but you may take pictures from Monet's bedroom window which offers great views of the garden. Everything inside the house was owned by Monet and is considered part of the museum. Touching or handling things is not permitted. There is a large gift shop where you can by prints of the many pantings by the artist as well as calendars and touristy memorabilia.

Claude Monet had his own personal bedroom but it is connected via the bathrooms to the bedroom of his wife Alice. The artists bedroom has a collection of paintings by other painters of his time, including Manet, C├ęsanne and Renoir. There is also a large collection of Japanese woodblock prints displayed in various areas if the house. Monet drew inspiration from them. Monet was one if the few artists who became famous and wealthy in his own time.

Strolling through the garden is a photographers dream, the pond with its Japanese bridge and lilies is probably the most photographed. And all the flowers scream for close-ups.

The best times to visit Monet's house in Giverny is spring and autumn. But anytime from May to September is good. The plants all bloom at different times, so there is always something to see and smell.

A holiday to France should definitely include a visit to this beautiful estate.