It’s a great idea to go to Paris for the day – (we don’t get time to go often enough!) It’s really easy.
For a day’s sightseeing, think about an early start – the 07.17 from Argentan arrives in Paris at 09.16. Or go for lunch: the 10.19 arrives in Paris at 12.05. Or for dinner and maybe stay over a night: the 16.23 will get you there by 18.05.
You can find the train timetable for Argentan – our local station- to Paris Montparnasse at http://www.voyages-sncf.com/#.
The train times are on average about every 1 .5 to 2 hours. The journey time is about 2 hours- more or less. (Go for DIRECT trains – do not go via Le MANS where you have to change trains)
You can choose to look at the site in English if you want and select horaires seuls if you only want to look at timetables rather than buy a ticket as well. You want to type in ARGENTAN & PARIS MONTPARNASSE 3 VAUGIRARD (75) and look for direct trains. (The timetable will give you options to go via Le Mans – which you don’t want to do!) You can also buy tickets online and collect them at the station with the credit card – although you can easily buy them at the station before you travel.
Not much difference between first and second class – but first class is quieter.
At MONTPARNASSE station you arrive at the VAUGIRARD section: which are platforms 25-28.
For a memorable meal with a view ( and there are even some child friendly options !) take a look at the Fodors recommendations: http://bit.ly/1GgNikm
Another good tool is http://www.ratp.fr/ the Paris equivalent of the London www.tfl.gov.uk site. It will give you good idea of how long it will take to get to places in and around Paris. Again you can also read it in English. There are downloadable Paris maps etc
ON THE WAY BACK remember to leave enough time to walk back to the Vaugirard platforms (about 5-10 minutes from the main concourse) You walk to the end of the main concourse and then walk along the last platform (24) until you reach these. NB there are only vending machines at Vaugirard. If you want coffee or food, buy at the main concourse as takeaway.
DRIVING: For those who prefer to drive, keep in mind that there are some attractions to the west of Paris, on the way: for example Versailles ( 2.5 hour drive)