Thursday, July 13, 2017

Morning at Versailles (Paris #2)

After a late night, we had an early morning as we headed to the Palace of Versailles. Our hotel was in the 18th Arrondissement, northeast of the city center, and Versailles is west of Paris, so Google maps predicted that it would take us a little over an hour to get out to the Palace. We thought we'd booked a ticket for 9am, so we left the hotel at 7:30 in the morning. Ew. 

One of the metros we were supposed to connect to simply wasn't running, so we had to wait a long time, and then there was no food at the metro station, so we skipped breakfast, much to the dismay of our empty stomachs. When we got to the Versailles station, it was just after 9. I was worried that I'd need to buy a new ticket since mine said 9am, but it turned out that the tickets are general admission and aren't for a certain time. Nine o'clock is simply the time the Palace opens. I'd still try to be there as early as possible, since the line is quite long.

This is the line for ticket holders. If you don't have a ticket, you have to go to an office to the right of this to get one (there was almost no line there) and then go stand in this line. Despite the length of the line, we were only waiting in it for about ten minutes. Once you get to the front, they scan your ticket and then you go through security. Not too long later, you're through! I was surprised at how quickly all of this moved with so many people in line. My ticket was for the Palace and Gardens. Jaime didn't have to buy a ticket because if you're under 26 and a resident of the EU, entrance is free to this and many other Paris attractions. 

We enjoyed exploring the Palace of Versailles. It surprised me that audio guides were handed out for free, so as we walked through the opulent rooms, we heard all about them and some of the things that happened there. 

The Hall of Mirrors. 

After touring the Palace, we walked around the palace gardens. I believe that entrance into these is free, if you only wanted to walk around there and see just the outside of Versailles, but I didn't know that before we went and had pre-purchased my ticket online. 

There was a Laduree macaron shop at Versailles, and since we hadn't eaten, we purchased a box of eight. You may not remember this, but our last meal was lunch the day before. This place is a Paris institution, and quite expensive, but it was on our list of places we wanted to try, so we forked over the money. I guess since this was technically dinner the night before and breakfast that day, it evened out, cost-wise. 

We walked over to Marie Antoinette's Palace (Petit Trianon) located maybe a mile from the Palace of Versailles (Google says 2.7km), only to discover that it didn't open for another 30 minutes. The hours of this smaller palace are different from the main palace and we saw that it was open that day, but hadn't checked our watches for the time. It felt a lot later than it was! We didn't really want to wait for it, so we walked right back to Versailles. Here's the outside though!

My dad gave me a Selfie stick when he was here, so we used that for some pictures of us!

The gardens had these tall hedges that reminded us of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

We walked back to the train station and purchased tickets to return to Paris, but had enough time before the train came so we could take some pictures.

Another skinny traffic light man!

We packed the rest of the day with things in Paris, so that our last day could be a little more relaxed, so I'll write about the rest of this day in Paris in another post! 

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