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Step back in time – the best French historic sites within two hours of Paris

Paris is a city of endless delights, but if you’ve already visited the capital several times, you may find yourself ready to venture beyond its limits. For those interested in history and culture, there are numerous top attractions located just a short drive from Paris – perfect for a history-themed road trip.

Whether you’re intrigued by medieval architecture, Impressionist paintings or tales of the Great War, there’s a site nearby to pique your interest. Rent a car in Paris today and head out on a time-travelling adventure to discover France’s rich history. With your own transport you can visit all the sites below at your own pace – and the best bit is they’re all located less than two hours from Paris.

Discover French history on a day out from Paris

Imagine yourself at the court of Louis XIV, the legendary Sun King, with a visit to the Chateau de Versailles – located just west of Paris, this ornate royal palace embodies the 18th-century French golden age. Or travel further back in time with an expedition to the awe-inspiring Cathedrale de Chartres, an exceptionally well-preserved example of French gothic architecture which has attracted pilgrims for centuries.

Europcar-Parc_du_Château_de_Versailles_-_Les_Jardins
Image by Gilles Messian – http://flickr.com/photos/9538836@N08/3568185898

Alternately, venture east of Paris to experience the tragedy and heroism of World War I at the Historial de la Grande Guerre, a fascinating mix of permanent and temporary exhibitions located on the site of the deadly Battle of the Somme. Or soak up the rich history. With your own transport you can visit all the sites below at your own pace – and the best bit is they’re all located less than three hours from Paris.

These are just some of the diverse sites waiting to be discovered just a short drive from Paris – check out our visual guide below to explore even more of France’s best historic attractions, all within easy reach of the capital.

 

Drive around Paris
Drive around Paris

 

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