travel: versailles, france

After a fun, relaxing Friday & Saturday, a friend from my French university, Lena, and I decided to make the most out of our Sunday and trek to the Château de Versailles!

Just a little more than a half an hour outside the city, we took the famed RER (a commuter-type train in Paris) and soon found ourselves in the charming city of Versailles. In full discolure, I didn’t realize that Versailles was an actual, functioning city and not just the estate of ancient French royalty. So I was quite surprised to see a bustling little town with cute little restaurants and buildings that coordinated with the obscenely large palace that puts in on the map!

Advice: if you’re studying in France, bring your student visa to get in for free; also, the RER is de-zoned on the weekends, so if you if you have a Navigo pass for zones 1 & 2 (like me), it’ll get you there free!

We left in the late morning and arrived around 11AM, which we decided was a fitting time to pass directly to the immense gardens and sit by the lake for a small picnic. (Note: If you’re as scared of swans as I am, keep your distance from the water’s edge – they are NOT afraid to swim right up and stare you down until you give them food!)

Cue the photos:

View overlooking the gardens & lake
We just kept wondering how they maintained this back in the day…
Eating brioche by the water
None of the fountains were working…but they were still beautiful
One of the only areas with actual flowers
The stunning orangier
Lena’s GoPro was so much fun!
Posing at the Collade
Imitating the statues just never gets old
Hide & seek in the gardens?

After filling our stomachs with the brioche that Lena so graciously brought and wandering through the gardens a bit, we passed back through to the palace and took our place in line to see the famous Versailles.

We lucked out on the best weather!
The most beautiful golden gate
Chapel within Versailles
So. Many. People.
Just look at that detail!
Trying to capture the amazing ceilings
Galerie des Glaces/Hall of Mirrors
Marie Antoinette’s chamber – yes please!
Mirror selfie in the Hall of Mirrors – I had to do it

Holy cannoli. The amount of gold – my favorite color – in that single building is more than I could have ever dreamed. The ceiling height, attention to detail, paintings and number of incredible artifacts that we passed was unimaginable. Even though I developed at least five new blisters & may have sprained my ankle from all of the walking on cobble-stone/uneven surfaces, I wouldn’t trade it for anything. This may be my new favorite place…especially Marie Antoinette’s bedroom – there’s a very good chance I will take some design advice from her in the future.


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  1. I think I'm the only one who didn't LOVE Versailles…the gardens, yes, but the inside of the château gave me a headache from all the gold!

    Chloe | Wanderlust in the Midwest

  2. Beautiful photos! I really want to go!

  3. So beautiful! I never got to go to Versailles when I was in Paris. I've regretted it ever since and you're photos are doing nothing to help that! Looks like you had a great time!

  4. Versailles is SO beautiful! You took a lot of great pictures!

  5. Stunning, what an experience to be in France.

  6. I can totally understand that, you have to really love the style to enjoy the château – especially with all those long lines & crowded spaces! By the way, when is your arrival in France girly?

  7. Oh no, sounds like a legitimate reason to book a return trip soon! 😉

  8. Wow, what a beautiful location! I'd love to visit Versailles one day!

  9. Amazing pictures! I hope to make it there one day! !

  10. Awesome photos – looks like a great time!!!

  11. I've never been to Paris! Would love to go! Your pictures are amazing! Are you using a fisheye lens on some of them or a program to edit them? I love the fisheye look!

  12. SO beautiful. I hope to make it there some day!

  13. Love it! Really reminds me of Saint-Petersburg, too. I used to not like the palaces and all of the gold much before but now I grew to appreciate that style more. There is something intriguing in that era, like a never ending party!

  14. Too bad the fountains weren't looking. Those gardens are beautiful and kinda remind me of Alice in Wonderland!

  15. I definitely have a lot of "pinch-me" moments here!

  16. It's a bucket list item, for sure!

  17. Thanks! The fisheye look was actually from my friend's GoPro (Hero 3, I believe) – it was so perfect for capturing the views that a regular camera can't

  18. Ah, I have always wanted to visit Saint Petersburg! I agree though, the extravagance takes some getting used to. I love that you said never-ending party, the whole time I was reminded of the mansion from the Great Gatsby – a definite nonstop celebration!

  19. I know, it was a bit of a bummer! But nonetheless, it was breathtaking, and I agree, especially with the swirls in the grass & funny topiaries!

  20. Wow, the photos are breathtaking! So beautiful. I would love to go there one day. And the hide and seek photo in the gardens cracks me up! 🙂

  21. Thank you – it's definitely something to put on your bucket list!
    The gardens felt so formal with the sprawling landscape and baroque music playing…we definitely weren't as serious!! Hahah

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