The Champagne region of France with its rolling hills and vineyards is worth the visit if you have a few extra days to spend in France. Less than 100 miles east of Paris, the easiest way is to take the TGV from Paris to Reims and then rent a car to drive through the picturesque road through the vineyards, called "Montagne de Reims".
Here are few ideas to spend few days around Reims and Epernay, the 2 main cities where you will find most of the well-known Champagne House.
Visit the sacred town of Reims, known for its role in consecrating the kings of France as well as its importance to the Champagne region’s sparkling wines. After a tour of the city’s famous Gothic cathedral, where most of the King of France got sacred, starting with the famous Clovis, then take a tour at the Cellars of Maison Pommery (one of the most beautiful to visit)
Then drive through the region in direction of Epernay and stop in different villages like Chamery, Sermiers, Rilly-la-montagne, Verzy (look for a special forest called "Faux de Verzy"), Ambonnay, Avenay-Val d'or (cute village), Louvois, etc...I highly recommend a Michelin map to help you find the little roads through the woods and vineyards. So beautiful from May to September...
Stop overnight at Epernay, the main entrepôt for the region’s sparkling wines. Here, you’ll visit the prestigious wine cellars of Moet & Chandon or Champagne Mercier (which have 18km of underground caves you visit in a little train) for another tasting session. Stroll down the "Avenue de Champagne" to look at all the fancy houses of Champagne
If you stay at the hotel Royal Champagne : Go to Hautvillers, a cute village overlooking Epernay where Champagne was created in the 16es by a monk. From there go to the forest for a hike (beautiful national park). Ask for La Briqueterie or les Rinsillons.
In Epernay, there is a new restaurant on Place De la Republique, called La Banque
- Les Crayeres (Relais et Chateaux in Reims next to Pommery Champagne House)
- Royal Champagne (Relais et Chateaux between Reims and Epernay with a very nice view and next to a great forest where you can hike)
- La Villa Eugene (located in Epernay). Less expensive but very nice. Well located on Avenue de Champagne in Epernay next to all the famous Champagne house.
I grew up in Epernay, 2 mn from Moet & Chandon and I still remember the fumes while I was walking to school...