Auvers-sur-Oise – The Van Gogh Trail
If you are in Paris and looking for a fabulous day trip outside of the bustling capital, I highly recommend a visit to the charming French village of Auvers-sur-Oise. Auvers today is literally an open-air museum for Van Gogh lovers. You can walk from site to site and see the real Van Gogh landscapes where he lived, loved, painted, died and is buried.
Auvers-sur-Oise and the Impressionists
Auvers-sur-Oise is a small charming town located only thirty kilometres from Paris. This picturesque town was a magnet to artists and especially to the Impressionists. Famous painters who resided here include Paul Cézanne, Charles-François Daubigny, Camille Pissarro, Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot and Vincent Van Gogh. Many of Van Gogh’s landscapes are from Auvers.
When he arrives in Auvers, Van Gogh writes a letter to his brother Theo and describes this village by saying:
“…it’s gravely beautiful, it’s the heart of the countryside, distinctive and picturesque.”
Auvers is particularly famous as it was the last place that Van Gogh resided before his death on 29 July 1890. He only lived in Auvers for 70 days but was extremely prolific during his time here. Some of the most iconic Van Gogh landscapes are from Auvers.
Van Gogh painted more than 80 paintings while he was in Auvers-sur-Oise. That means he painted more than ONE painting a day!!! Incredible!
Auvers is decidedly very beautiful. So much so that I think it’ll be more advantageous to work than not to work” – Vincent van Gogh
If you are a Van Gogh fan and you are in Paris, a day trip to Auvers-sur-Oise is a MUST!
Just make sure you get a map from the tourist information, put on comfortable walking shoes and conquer the small town by foot to see all the real Van Gogh landscapes…. it is a wonderful day!
Van Gogh’s Landscapes by foot
- Walk through town and visit Dr. Gachet’s house, which is now a museum. You’ll see the rooms where Dr. Gachet treated Van Gogh with homeopathic remedies. You can also see the gardens where they both painted together.
- Van Gogh boarded in Auvers in the Auberge Ravoux. There is a small shop on the first floor and Van Gogh’s tiny and miserable room is on the second floor. On the ground floor there is a quaint restaurant, restored to resemble how it looked at the time of Van Gogh. Also the menus has also been devised to the foods that were served at the time of Van Gogh. The food is really delicious if you feel like a good meal.
- Another must is the famous church Notre-Dame-de-l’Assomption, immortalised by Vincent Van Gogh. This painting itself is now on display in the fantastic Musée d’Orsay. It is also one of the most iconic of all Van Gogh’s landscapes
- Then take a stroll in the nearby wheat field where he painted and also shot himself on July 27, 1890
- Near the wheat field is the Auvers cemetery where Vincent Van Gogh and his loyal & beloved brother Theo are buried. The graves are simple and without grandeur. Hopefully Vincent Van Gogh now rests in peace after such a turbulent life.
How to get to Auvers from Paris
Take a train from Gare du Nord to Auvers. Midweek, you need to change trains in Persan Beaumont. The entire journey only takes just a little over an hour. If you go on the weekend, there is a direct train from Gare du Nord to Auvers.
For organized tours from Paris, press here for some great options
Enjoy the Van Gogh’s landscapes!!