It was the fourth day of our European adventure when we decided to visit the illustrious home of Marie Antoinette, the Palace of Versailles. After being in awe of the sheer size of Château de Chantilly, I was definitely expecting Versailles to be as majestic. It did not disappoint!
We arrived just in time to beat the lunch crowd, and decided to eat at a random restaurant near the palace. Got lucky and found a nice bistro that offered a huge lunch portion for cheap. You definitely have to eat beforehand because you need all the calories you can get for walking! There are some food concessionaires at the palace grounds but it’s way overpriced.
After lunch, we made our way to the palace and got greeted by an extremely long line. It was the line to get in even if you have tickets already! We’re happy we bought tickets the night before because otherwise, we’d end up waiting in line twice. We encountered two girls who thought it was the line to buy tickets, and they ended up waiting for 20 minutes until they were turned away at the door. Quelle tragédie!
My sister and her husband have been to the palace of course, and I didn’t really plan any special route. I was content to explore aimlessly.
Warning: Photo-heavy post.
Here are my top five tips before your trip:
- GO EARLY. We made the choice to arrive later in the morning and regretted that immensely. There are just too many tour groups and not enough room to properly enjoy the space. The palace opens at 9 am so go at least 30 minutes before.
- BUY YOUR TICKETS IN ADVANCE. Since you’re already going early, might as well buy your tickets online. It’ll eliminate the need to line up twice.
- EAT A HEAVY BREAKFAST OR BRING YOUR OWN. Granted there are places to eat at in the palace grounds but why pay 15 euros for a sandwich when you can just bring your own? Note: You can’t actually bring it inside the palace. You have to check it in and then get it back to eat at the gardens where you can picnic.
- WEAR COMFORTABLE SHOES. The whole place is massive! You’ll be doing a lot of walking and not all of that will be on marble floors. Leave your five-inch heels at home, or at least bring another pair to change into after you’ve photographed your OOTD.
- VENTURE OUT OF THE PALACE. If you have time, don’t limit yourself to the palace and its grounds. Walk around Versailles. There’s an open market in Place du Marché Notre Dame where they sell artisan bread, cheese, spices, fresh produce and more!
I think you need two full days to see everything at the palace at a leisurely pace. I don’t think we managed to see everything in one day, and I would love to go back soon.
Tell me what I missed during my day at Versailles by leaving a comment below!