There are so many incredible places to visit in Paris, and you're not the only one who knows it. In high season, you'll definitely have company lining up at the Eiffel Tower , Notre-Dame , or the Louvre. As such, this became an important pilgrimage site and a sort of necropolis for France, containing the remains of all but three of the kings who reigned from the 10th century through Anti-monarchy Revolutionaries tossed those bones into a mass grave outside the church in , although they were later gathered into an ossuary in the crypt.
In the late s, King Charles V expanded a former royal hunting lodge dating to the midth century by added a massive defensive donjon, the tallest in Europe at 52 meters ft.
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Nobles spent bouts of time here over the centuries, including Louis XIV during his childhood, yet it was denied the refurbishments given to other castles. After visiting the castle, you can spend the afternoon in the sprawling Vincennes Woods nearby. The vast park has a large network of paths, a lake where you can rent boats, a botanical garden, the Parc Floral de Paris which hosts open-air jazz , and classical music concerts in summer. The castle is right outside the station.
Alternatively, the RER A station of the same name is a few blocks away. France has some exquisite medieval abbeys, and this outstanding one happens to be located a short jaunt from Paris. Saint Louis King Louis IX founded the abbey in but left his equally pious mother in charge of the construction of this simple yet graceful Cistercian monastery. It had strong ties to the monarchy until the Revolution, after which it was turned into a cotton mill, then a theater popular with Parisian socialites from to Luckily, it was classified as a national monument and saved from destruction in Getting There: Open daily hours and details here.
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The abbey is about an hour's journey from Paris' Gare du Nord, where you take a suburban train to Viarmes line H in the direction of Luzarches. The Abbey is 5 km 3 mi from the station and can be reached via shuttle buses available during peak season or a minute taxi ride.
That tradition is revived every December in the form of a lively Christmas market. Getting There: It takes 80 minutes by train from Paris-Est to Provins ; buy your ticket at the yellow machines, which have an English-language option.
The town is accessible by foot from the station. The TGV high-speed train has brought dozens of cities closer to Paris. Best known abroad from its sports car race held every June, Le Mans has a lot more to offer than revving motors. Check the schedule on the SNCF site in advance; otherwise you may be stuck on the slow two-hour train.
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