I’ll admit… I had no idea about Rouen until my friend Kim invited me to join her on a day trip to visit one of her friends. I am so glad she brought me along because this city is a hidden gem within France.
Rouen is a small city located in the Normandy region of France, and only a two-hour train ride from the heart of Paris. I only had a day but I absolutely loved everything about it. Incredible gothic cathedrals, medieval styled buildings and so much history filled the streets. I was walking in a fairytale.
The first thing we did was eat!! As soon as we all met up we headed to Ginette for lunch, and this place was buzzing with locals and had so many tasty, yet healthy options to choose from. And if we’re being 100% honest, I really needed some healthier options after adapting to the Parisian diet of carbs.
I decided to get a new item on the menu, which was a dippy egg, ham, salad, and bread configuration. It was delicious, but maybe not the healthiest option I could have opted for. Oh well... we’re embracing the abroad bod.
After filling up we went on a walking tour around the city from our very own local. We took a stroll through the Vielle Ville or “old city” of Rouen right down the Rue du Gros-Horloge. I could not get over the medieval style of all the buildings, they were each so unique.
The vibe this street gives off really makes you see what it must have been like during the medieval times, with trading posts and old-fashioned clocks, it almost feels like your on a movie set.
At the end of the street we came across Gros-Horloge, an iconic clock from the 14th century!!!! It’s one of the oldest in France.
Next, we headed to the Cathédrale Notre-Dame, which we could spot from the train about 15 minutes out. It was spectacular then and standing right in front of it nothing changed. I was still in awe. Among the hundreds of churches within the city, this cathedral is a prized gothic masterpiece of Rouen.
Kim has been raving about these eclairs she had in Rouen when she visited back in high school and we returned back to Cafè Yuonne. Kim was right. They were amazing and unlike any normal eclair I've had. They had this crunchy exterior added which just put a twist on the traditional eclair. I wonder if they can ship to the US?
We chat and sat for a bit before heading back to the train station for our return to Paris.
Rouen, thanks for being lovely.