When I was in France traveling with a friend on a three week trip, we spent a day at the Palace of Versailles. One day is not enough. It was barely enough to see the inside of the palace and we were rushed. We barely even touched the gardens. If you plan to visit, try to spend two days touring the palace and grounds.
Rich in history, the last known residents were King Louis XVI and Queen Marie Antoinette. In 1789 during the outbreak of the French Revolution, they were stripped of power and beheaded. Now the grounds are open for touring, used as an art exhibit and the French Parliament meet there when amending the French constitution.
I am not a historian, so I won’t pretend to be. There are many books, movies, articles, and really endless trails to learning about the Palace and the history of the royal families who lived there.
Tips for visiting:
- The Palace is not open on Monday’s, so plan ahead.
- Getting here can be a bit overwhelming if you don’t speak French. We took the train and navigated it ourselves and then walked maybe a quarter mile to the entrance. Other options include taking a taxi – which will be very pricey, joining a tour, or you can take a bus. We considered all those options and ended up taking the train.
- The gardens and Palace are massive. If you are visiting, come early and plan to be here all day. Two days if you can.
- Get here as early as you can and go inside the Palace first. We got here later than we expected and waited in line for about 2-3 hours to get in.
- There will be a lot of people there. Prepare yourself for the crowds.
- There are a lot of selfie sticks and iPad’s blocking virtually every photo opportunity – you will need to be patient and squeeze your way to the front.
- We dealt with a lot of very rude people jumping in front of our photos… ALL day. Make peace with this early on and don’t let it bother you.
Some photos to inspire you to visit this stunning Palace. They really spent their time with the detailing and workmanship centuries ago – it’s quite extraordinary.