Palace of Versailles
Other than Louvre, Palace of Versailles is the most visited place in Paris. When i mean most visited i kid you not, loads and loads of coaches packed with Chinese visitors will pack these places. If you want to have a good tour in the area be the first few to be at the gate waiting for it to open. The advantages to be an early bird:
- You get to avoid the long queue
- Touring the place at a leisure/comfortable pace without having someone to hurry you
- Less noisy
- Toilets are spanking clean. Not that i’m very particular about cleanliness, the place can get very awful after the many tour groups
- The entire estate comprises of the Palace, gardens and Marie-Antoinette’s estate
Give yourself 4-5 hours to complete the entire estate.
You can get the details on how to get there in this page.
Gardens of Versailles
The gardens cover some 800 hectares of land and to maintain it is no easy feat. The construction of this gardens was under the instructions of Louis XIV. It was carefully managed under the King’s directions. Within the park, there are water fountains, grand canal and water garden.
Located at a corner of the estate is Marie-Antoinette’s. A getaway place for Queen Marie-Antoniette from the Palace. What’s interesting in this estate is the Queen’s Hamlet, a mockup village around an artificial lake.
Sainte-Chapelle was a royal chapel. It was constructed to house the relics of Christ which includes the famous Crown of Thorns. And it is prime example of a gothic architecture style. What’s stunting in this chapel is the row of tall stained glass windows. Magnificent!
If you’re visiting Sainte-Chapelle you might want to consider to swing by Conciergerie, located just next to the chapel. It was a royal prison. This building played an important part in the history of France.
If you want to understand the history of France and how the French revolution came about take a tour in Conciergerie it will provide you an overview of the sequence of events which led this country to behead their monarchy and became a republic.
This industrial looking building is both a public library and museum which has the largest collection of modern art in Europe.