What’s Even Cooler Than Paris – Near Paris? (not a trick question)

by Marc Valentine

Chateau De Versailles

Chateau De Versailles

When we first visited Paris back in 2010 it was cold… and wet… and miserable.

You don’t have to be a genius to realise that we didn’t have an incredible time in Paris on that particular visit…

…it’s hard to fall in love with a city when you’re wrapped up in a scarf & beanie and constantly huddling under the cover of an umbrella.

The saving grace of our maiden voyage to Paris – was our amazing day trip out to Chateau De Versailles.


Hall of mirrors

Hall of mirrors Chateau De Versailles

Roughly an hour train ride outside of Paris… Chateau De Versailles (pronounced De-vers-hi) has a firmly entrenched position on my “all time favourite places to visit” list. in fact it sits right up at the pointy end near the top.

I think I’l try to visit De Versailles every time I’m fortunate enough to find myself in nearby Paris.

So what’s so great about Chateua De Versailles?

I mean there are chateaux all over France, what makes this one so special?


Chateau De Versailles Gardens

Well, for starters…

  • it’s a UNESCO World Heritage Listed site
  • Marie Antoinette lived there
  • it was home to the French government at one point
  • the 2000 acres of grounds are absolutely stunning…

… and the Chateau is not so bad either.

The first time we visited Versailles we didn’t even make it inside the palace, we spent the entire day wandering around the incredible gardens.

Even on my second visit to the grounds I found myself pondering…

How on earth something of this size and grandeur could have possibly been crafted back in the 1600s?

How much did this place cost to build?

& where on earth did all the money come from?

(could people even be that rich in the 1600s? Did the French tap into an epic drug market no one else knew about?)


Palace De Versailles

Personally, for me… the gardens are the real gem in De Versailles crown, the chateau is nice, but there’s something captivating about those incredible grounds that I find deeply relaxing & makes me want to spend every moment I can there.

The gardens are laid out into numerous areas – each with it’s own attraction, whether it’s a beautiful water fountain, or some other spell binding centrepiece, each garden has it’s own unique attraction.


Tea pot at versailles

Sneak a peak inside the house where Marie Antoinette lived before she lost her head (a 15-20 min walk from the main palace)

Take a rowboat out on the lake… or just find a quiet spot to chill out & enjoy a picnic lunch.

If you have a day spare & your’e looking for places to visit near Paris – I can’t recommend De Versailles enough.

The place is massive. You pretty much need an entire day if you want to see and enjoy it properly.

Learn more about Chateau De Versailles

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