I got up at the ungodly hour of 6 am to meet my lovely American friends for our journey to Versailles. Let this be a warning to all you would be Versailles visitors: Saturday + Versailles = many, many people. Not to mention that there will be a plethora of tour groups, rude people cutting ahead of you in line and lots of getting jostled about. This is not to say it isn’t worth the hassle because shiny things abound and the architecture ain’t too shabby.
I had the lovely audioguide to help me out with my trip and all I can say is holy loquacious Batman! More description than I ever could’ve wanted for the many, many antechambers the Dauphin had. Why so many waiting rooms? At least they weren’t filled with outdated magazines…
Sadly the opera house on the grounds was under construction. I had the good fortune of visiting it back in the early 90s with a friend of mine and it was gorgeous.
Top tips for Versailles in spring:
1) Get there early and be prepared for line ups on the weekend.
2) Make sure to bring an umbrella and jacket. Learn from my mistake as I brought neither (le weather forecast is always wrong!) It will make the trip much more pleasant if you’re warm and dry in the gardens.
3) Golf carts are available for rent, but it’s not almost free. I’d suggest walking instead, but make sure you have proper attire and comfy shoes.
4) Le sandwich at the take away counter will be more delicious than you can imagine due to low blood sugar, being pushed and shoved and wanting a few moments with more than 5 cm of personal space.
5) Suck in all the beauty and remember it will still be there next time if you miss something (but could be under construction!)