Why You Should Visit The Champagne Region From Paris
The first reason to visit the Champagne region is obviously to taste Champagne. Even though its fairly common to refer to all sorts of sparkling as Champagne, its fundamentally wrong.
Only sparkling wine that comes from the Champagne region, made from regional grapes and ages in the miles-long underground cave system, can legally be called Champagne. By visiting the Champagne, youre basically at the source of everything that is good.
Wait, you are more into wine? Take a day trip to Bordeaux instead!
But the Champagne is also historically a very interesting destination. The biggest city of the new Grand Est region, Reims, had already been a major city in the Roman Empire. Some ruins got preserved until today!
Reims also has one of the most important cathedrals in France! Between the 12th and the 19th century, most french kings got crowned there. Located relatively close to the German border, many battlegrounds of WWI were located in the Champagne region and can be visited today.
And to get back to the fun stuff: you can taste champagne!
Champagne is a sparkling wine made from Chardonnay, Pinot noir or Pinot Meunier grapes. Even though the term Champagne is for many a generic label for any kind of sparkling wine, legally ONLY those coming from the region can be called Champagne.
What you can expect in Reims
a beautiful cathedral
the Palais du Tau
Roman ruins, for example, the Mars Gate
Visiting The Les Grandes Marques
If visiting Reims with an organized tour is not really your cup of tea, you can certainly visit the headquarters and cellars of the big Champagne Houses, Les Grandes Marques, on your own.
The big houses are offering guided visits that you simply can sign up for online. Below I put together a list of the most popular ones. Just keep in mind that they are not necessarily in the center of Reims and you need to organize your own transportation. There are busses and trams circulating in Reims, or you just get a taxi.
Or you walk from the center to Veuve Clicquot, its around 40min on foot.
Stop For Lunch In Charming Pernay
Onto the next stop, and the charming town of Epernay. This pretty town is at the heart of the champagne industry, home to some of the most famous producers. You’ll have free time to explore here, and we recommend a stroll down Avenue de Champagneto grab lunch in one of many restaurants that line the street.
The price of lunch is not included in the cost of this tour.
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Paris To Epernay By Car
Time: 1,5 hours
This is a good option for a day trip from Paris to Champagne and the option that allows you to stop and enjoy the landscapes of Champagne whenever you want.
This is an easy, 141-kilometer scenic drive, but finding a parking place in Epernay can be challenging.
The downside of driving to Champagne from Paris is that car + champagne wine was never a good combination. Get a taste of champagne during lunch and buy your favorite bottles for when you are back at your hotel in Paris.
Dont you have a car? Use DiscoverCars.com to find the best deals. The site covers the major and local brands and makes a price comparison for you. This helps to ensure that you get a great price
A Custom Itinerary Makes Paris To Champagne A Breeze
A day trip to sample the effervescent loveliness of Champagne makes sense for so many reasons. Its close by and easily accessible. The towns are very walkable. There are so many great places to see, the food is as varied and delicious as the wines, and the generally-cooler weather can provide a nice break from city heat in summer.
With a custom-designed itinerary, all the details down to the last bubble are taken care of: any needed transportation, train and tour tickets, tasting reservations, dinner reservations so once you know what you want to experience, Ill take care of the rest, and all you have to do is show up and raise your glass. À votre santé!
SAVE TIME. AVOID FRUSTRATIONS. EXPERIENCE A BETTER VACATION.
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Things To Know Before Going On A Champagne Tour
I recently went on a Champagne tour and to be honest, I wish I had educated myself before I went.
I know beer so well but I really didnât know too much about Champagne
Here are some tips I can give for your day on a Champagne Tour from Paris that will help prepare and educate you for the trip:
â Learn the history of the region. I really canât stress this enough. The 20th century World Wars actually had a major impact in the region and on the beverage.
The Champagne houses didnât really speak much about this, but when my group asked, they gave some insight and it was more fascinating than I could have imagined. Many of the cellars housed families during the wars.
â Try to know a bit about Champagne. Obviously, you want to learn more on the tour itself, but it helps to not be as dumb as I was on the tour because it left me too embarrassed to ask the questions I wanted to ask and I went searching for them on Google later.
â Dress appropriately. Most people on my tour were dressed up fairly nicely. This is my version of dressing nicely and exactly what I wore to my Champagne tour the day before:
Needless to say, I was able to make it work but I didnât don a huge hat for Instagram for the tour or any of that like the other people in my group. Wear something nice, but comfortable.
You will be in Champagne cellars, so also ensure you have something that will keep you warm as they are a bit cool.
How To Get To Champagne From Paris
You have several options for traveling from Paris to Champagne. You can take the high-speed train TGV, a bus, rent a car or book a tour. As you probably will try quite some alcohol, I strongly advise against renting a car though. Your best bet is either taking a train or booking a tour from Paris.
The most convenient and efficient way to visit Reims is to book a champagne day trip from Paris. It might be a bit more expensive than organizing the trip on your own, but you can be sure not to miss any highlight. Just lean back and your guide will figure out the rest.
Our Tip: check out this tour its the tour that received the amazing reviews and is one of the best Champagne tours from Paris on getyourguide.com. It includes a visit of Épernay, Hautvillers , a vineyard tour, lunch and of course lots of Champagne..
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Consider Taking A Guided Tour
We managed to visit the Champagne region on our own, doing a lot of research beforehand. We pulled it off, but not without some hiccups . At the end of the day when we were exhausted from getting lost, we wished we would have signed up with a guided tour.
There are plenty online and Im sure they are all much easier and less stressful than doing it on your own! This Champagne tour and this day trip are the closest to what we did, visiting both Reims and Épernay. Or this one is just Reims while this tour is just Épernay .
Champagne is such a contrast from Paris. Its definitely worth dedicating a day to explore the countryside and taste Frances most famous drink. While parts of our day trip to Champagne was hectic, it was a sparkling end to an amazing trip through Spain and France.
Disclaimer: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links and I may receive a commission from them. Thank you for supporting the companies that support Whiskied Wanderlust.
Champagne Cellars In The Town Vineyards Outside Of Town
The town of Epernay is where all the major champagne brands have their cellars and houses. The Avenue De Champagne runs through the town and is lined with dozens of huge and beautiful houses. Each house houses the companys champagne in their underground cellars, as well as a house to showcase their product by offering tours, and just because they are cool enough to have an old estate.
The Vineyards themselves are located outside of the town. For example, Moet and Chandon produces and bottles all their wines at their estate in Epernay, but the grapes are grown outside of the town. I was envisioning sipping champagne with views of the vineyards and the rolling French countryside like my time in Stellenbosch, South Africa, but Epernay and Reims will not offer this. Youll need to get out to the countryside yourself.
This is part of the reason I chose Epernay. While looking at a map, I could see that Epernay was right near the countryside whereas Reims is a bit further out. Logically, I just figured it would be easier to get to the countryside from Epernay than Reims
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Mot & Chandon And Dom Perignon
Moët & Chandon have the largest cellars in Champagne with 28 kilometers of tunnels that hold 100 million bottles of Champagne. They are by far the the worlds largest and most famous producers of Champagne. At Moët & Chandon 2 tasting options are possible : if you book the CLASSIC option you will receive one glass of Champagne and if you book the SUPERIOR option you will receive two glasses of two different Champagne. No matter the tour option you choose for Moët & Chandon, the rest of the tour is strictly identical. Youll be asked which tour option you want during the online booking process. The SUPERIOR option is only available between April and October.
On your way back into Paris well make a special stop so that you can pay your respects to Dom Perignon, the father of Champagne. Dom Perignons grave is in a small hillside village with gorgeous views overlooking the Marne river and the vineyards around it. There your guide will explain the legend of the humble monk who perfected the Champagne making process.
Day Trip To The Champagne Region Plus Reims From Paris
Reims is a part of the Champagne Region, but not all day tours will take you there. Stroll through the old town and shop for local specialities before heading to your wine tasting.If youre interested in visiting a historic city on your excursion to the Champagne Region, this type of tour is a great choice.
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Reims By Train Start Your Champagne Day Trip From Paris
If you decide to organize your own transportation and take the train from Paris to Champagne, youll be happy to know that Reims is one of the easiest destinations for a day trip by train from Paris. Paris and Reims are connected by TGV, the French high-speed train. It takes only 45 minutes from Gare de lEst.
If you are traveling by train, and wish to visit Reims and Épernay, I advise booking a tour from Reims though. The train from Reims to Épernay does take only around 40 minutes and its theoretically doable to visit both locations independently. However, if you have any champagne tasting tours scheduled, youll be very much running from A to B. Check out this all-in-one tour from Paris that includes both cities . You also can visit a champagne house in Reims on your own account in the morning and an organized tour to Épernay in the afternoon. This tour is the most popular one.
Champagne Region: Day Trips And Tours From Paris
The Champagne Region is primarily known for its world-class wines but offers various day trip activities. Drive through the breathtaking French countryside and learn about the process of making authentic champagne in the local vineyards. Of course, a wine tasting is a must-do on your jaunt to the Champagne Region and an excursion here is ideal for wine enthusiasts and connoisseurs.
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What Is The Typical Itinerary Of A Day Tour To The Champagne Region From Paris
Meet your tour group at 8 AM at a pickup location in the city center of Paris. The journey to the Champagne Region will be comfortable and quick in an air-conditioned minivan or bus.
Most day trips to the Champagne Region begin with a guided tour of a world-famous champagne house like Mumm or Moet & Chandon. Learn about the process of making champagne and how this region is different from others in France and around the world.
Of course, a champagne tasting is a must-do at this point.
Enjoy a local lunch either at a winery or in a nearby village before heading to the city of Reims. Here, you can marvel at the historic cathedral and enjoy some free time wandering through the narrow streets and alleys.
In the afternoon, you will have a chance to visit even more wineries, as well as the Reims Mountain Regional National Park. Finish off your day trip to the Champagne Region with yet another glass of wine before the journey back to Paris.
Champagne Tours From Paris To Epernay
Champagne tours from Paris to Epernay are the most comfortable way to visit the region, plus you can drink that verre de plus without being a danger on the road for anyone. Learn all about one of the most famous drinks in France and the whole world with a knowledgeable guide.
The classic tours from Paris to Epernay include a visit to the Abbey of Hautvillers and a tour of a champagne house with tastings.
Thischampagne small-group tour with an English-speaking guide always has excellent reviews and visits Epernay, Hautvillers, and the cellars of Moët & Chandon for wine tastings. This champagne tour from Paris also includes a visit to Reims Cathedral, where the French Kings were crowned
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Facts About Frances Champagne Region
The Champagne region of France, now known as Grand Est since 2016, is a historic region in the northeast of France that is known for the beverage of the same name, Champagne.
This bubbly white wine is recognized all over the world and has become synonymous with celebrations and events and luxury. Not to mention, it is one of the best places to visit in France.
The grapes that are most commonly grown in the Champagne region are Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Pinot Meunier. These grapes dominate certain areas of the region itself.
Franceâs Champagne region is broken up into five distinct wine-producing regions and they are Aube, CÃ´te des Blancs, CÃ´te de SÃ©zanne, Montagne de Reims, and VallÃ©e de la Marne. The two main commercial centers are Ãpernay and Reims.
There are a variety of Champagne tours you can take in the region but not all leave from Paris.
This guide is exclusively going to be Champagne tours from Paris. I will create another guide detailing ones that leave from Reims soon.
About Day Trip From Paris To Champagne
Take a day tour in a private or small group and discover the Champagne region. Visit world-famous champagne houses, such as Moët & Chandon or Taittinger. As part of this day trip, you will also have the opportunity to enjoy an authentic French lunch and taste several glasses of champagne while marveling at the scenic view of vineyards.
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The Region Has An Incredible Past So Dont Forget To Indulge In History Too
Because of its geographical position between many different countries, the region has seen a lot of history, particularly in the form of war. The Romans defeated the Huns in Champagne in 451 A.D., many battles of the Hundred Years War took place there, and it was bombed repeatedly during both World Wars. In fact, the caves of Veuve Clicquot were once used as a hospital during World War I and the remnants of a hospital cross are still visible on the cave walls. And Reims is actually the place where Eisenhower and the Allies received the German surrender on May 7, 1945.
Reims is also home to the Notre Dame de Rems Cathedral, where the coronation of every French king has taken place, and the Abbey of Saint Remi, the largest Romanesque pilgrimage church in northern France.
Welcome To Our Champagne Day Trip From Paris
Spend a full Champagne Day Trip from Paris drinking bubbles !
This will become your favorite activity during your stay in Paris. My Winedays offers all inclusive day tours from Paris in small groups . You will see and taste the best of Champagne!
From transportation to visits and lunch, your English speaking and wine expert guide will take care of everything, while you relax and enjoy the Champagne region!
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Visiting Hautvillers From Epernay
At the recommendation of the people working at the Epernay Information Center , they recommended I visit the town of Hautvillers to actually visit the vineyards and champagne taste with views. I was envisioning of going from vineyard to vineyard like when I was wine tasting in Stellenbosch, and Hautvillers is as good as its gonna get without my own car. From Epernay, I had the visitor center call a taxi to take me to Hautvillers . The cost was 15 euros one way.
Hautvillers was honestly more what I was envisioning when I decided to come here. Situated in the heart of the Reims Mountain vineyards, this quaint and rustic little village is the cradle of champagne making. It is here that the the monk Dom Perignon discovered the art of champagne wine-making. The main street of the town is aptly named Rue Dom Perignon and the Saint-Sindulphe abbey church still houses his tomb to this day.
We had lunch here at Le 36 restaurant. They had a champagne tasting menu of their own as well as tasty French cuisine with plenty of bread and cream sauces.