Gardens of Versailles

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We decided to visit Versailles, the royal palace in the suburb of Paris, 20 km away. We took the RER and arrived in the nice posh suburb.

Once we reached the doors of Versailles, we realized we were in trouble. The lineup was so long I couldn’t even find where it started. I asked how long it would take us to get tickets: at least 90 minutes. And to actually get into the Palace, we had to queue another 90 minutes. Feng walked around a bit as we tried to assess how to make the best out of the situation. I looked up at the Palace and I saw people on top of each other by the open windows. No way I’m queuing at least 3 hours for a rush visit.

Meanwhile, Feng discovered visiting the gardens was cheaper and there were only about four people in line for that. Deal.

We were not disappointed, the gardens were huge and beautiful. I wish most of the fountains had worked though, and I wish the French were better organized. Granted, this is high-season but we had no problem getting in London’s major attractions for instance, and they were as busy. And please, please, set up more than one toilet in Versailles. I mean, this is ridiculous…

You can follow our French trip here on Flickr: France (2010).

Versailles Maze

Gold Fountain

Doors of Versailles

Park of Versailles

By the Water

Fountain Show

Greek Inspiration


Fleur de Lys

Golden Doors

Taking a Break

The Palace

Looking towards the Garden

The Palace


About Author

French woman in English Canada. World citizen, new mom, traveler, translator, writer and photographer. Looking for comrades to start a new revolution.


  1. I booked my tickets online before visiting otherwise I’d be stuck in the lines as well! We didn’t visit the garden though because they were having a water show, which you have to pay extra to see it! It’d be really interesting to see the sculptures but maybe next time 🙂

  2. Je suis allée à Versailles plusieurs fois, mais en hiver, et il n’y avait pas trop de monde. Tu sais, c’est tellement grand que plus tard c’est difficile de se rapeller. Par exemple maintenant je mélange des chambres que j’ai vues au palais Hermitage à St Peterbourg avec celles de Versailles (mais aussi je suis “senior” alors c’est mon excuse!)

  3. You definitely made the correct choice to not go into the chateau when it’s super crowded. It’s very, very unpleasant to be shoved around by everyone and it makes all the rooms seem very small and cramped. The gardens are so lovely! I’ve only been there in late fall and winter, so it’s nice to see everything in bloom.

  4. The same thing happened to me and friend when we visited Versailles. We saw that line and said “no way!” But the gardens definitely don’t disappoint, especially since you don’t have to wait to get in. Love your pics, brought back memories.

  5. That is a gorgeous and magnificent garden! The best of all is not too many people in it, looks so peaceful. Indeed it does need more than just one toilet! 🙂

  6. @Poem – Yes, the water show at night is expensive. But during the day, the gardens are 7 euro. I should have bought the tickets online too! But because we never queued for long in London, I thought it would be the same in Paris.

    @Vagabonde – Je dois visiter l’intérieur une fois… la prochaine peut-être ! je serai mieux organisée cette fois.

    @aline – That the local train liking Paris to the suburb. It’s an in-between long distance high-speed trains and the subway basically.

    @Soleil – Yes, I felt sorry for the people stuck inside Versailles! I could see them by the windows (all opened because it was like 40C) and it looked painful.

    @khengsiong – You should!

    @kyh – Next time I’ll go in!

    @Yogi – Looking back, it was a good option.

    @Linguist-in-Waiting – Was it? I would have queued 30 minutes but no more and it was so hot that day I just didn’t want to waste time.

    @Tanya – Ah, so I’m not the only one who was surprised by the French queue! The Gardens were lovely, I wasn’t disappointed.

    @micki – Tell me about it! You should have seen the toilet line-up… ridiculous! French are not always organized 😆

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