Versailles

Versailles Travel Guide

Versailles is a great day trip while you are visiting Paris.  Easily accessible by the regional lines from the city center; Versailles can be seen in a day and is the location of the grand Palace of Versailles.  While you can easily spend the entire day enjoying the Palace and surrounding gardens, there are some other sights to see in this quaint town.  Versailles offers some great French charm without the hustle and bustle of the city center in Paris.

The Clear Travel Versailles Travel Guide will help you see the top sights, save time, and save money on your trip!

The Basics
Top Things to do in Versailles
How to get Around in Versailles
Insider Tips
Clear Travel Summary

 

The Basics

Top Things to do in Versailles

Palace of Versailles

The stunning Palace of Versailles was the home of the Kings of France from 1661 to 1789.  The Palace is famous for it’s Hall of Mirrors, Royal Opera house, royal apartments, and chapels. Location on Google Maps.

How to get there:

  • Versailles is very easy to get to via the RER (regional train) lines that run from central Paris.  These lines are included in your Paris Visite transit pass if you get Zones 1-5.
  • RER: Yellow C line, Versailles Château Stop
  • RER: Yellow C, Purple U, or Auqa N Lines from the Versailles Chantiers Stop.

Ticket Information:

  • Included in your Paris Museum Pass.

Insider Tips:

  • The Paris Museum Pass allows you to skip the line waiting for tickets, just follow the sign for pass holders.  This will allow you to spend more time enjoying the Palace.
  • Recommend downloading an audio guide, or getting an audio pass at the museum.
  • The Hall of Mirrors is incredible, especially considering the period of time that it was built (mirrors were a very expensive luxury at the time.)  Take your time walking through the Hall.
Palace of Versailles Gardens

Vast green space with miles of immaculately maintained gardens behind the Palace of Versailles.  The gardens contain multiple fountains, a grand canal, and some interesting auxiliary buildings and mini palaces.  Location on Google Maps.

How to get there:

  • Versailles is very easy to get to via the RER (regional train) lines that run from central Paris.
  • RER: Yellow C line, Versailles Château Stop
  • RER: Yellow C, Purple U, or Auqa N Lines from the Versailles Chantiers Stop.

Ticket Information:

  • Included in the Paris Museum Pass.

Insider Tips:

  • The gardens can be closed in some days due to shows, concerts, and ‘musical water shows’ be sure to check the schedule on the official site to avoid going on the wrong day.  One of the times we went to the palace, we were unpleasantly surprised by this, and did not get to see the gardens until our next trip.  Here is the link to the official event schedule 
  • Plan to see the gardens on a nice day, and wear comfortable walking shoes, there are literally miles and miles of trails and walking paths in the gardens.
Galerie des Carrosses

Museum of ornate horse carriages.  This small museum is free, and would be a quick stop while you are seeing the Palace    Location on Google Maps.

How to get there:

  • Walking distance from the Palace of Versailles and the local RER train stations.

Ticket Information:

  • The Museum is free to enter.
Notre Dame de Versailles

Cathedral of choice for royal family events, the Notre Dame de Versailles is a short walk from the Palace and features classic 1600’s architecture.  Location on Google Maps.

How to get there:

  • Walking distance from the Palace of Versailles and the local RER train stations.

Ticket Information:

  • None needed
Enjoy a Quiet Side Street

Versailles is quieter than Paris, but offers incredible French charm without the hastle. There are multiple French restaurants or crêperies you can find by wandering around the backstreets of Versailles.  Leave some time in your day to wander, and grab a meal, or just enjoy some wine or a coffee at a cafe.

How to Get Around in Versailles

Central Paris To/From Versailles:

By Train:

  • Versailles is very easy to get to via the RER (regional train) lines that run from central Paris.  These lines are included in your Paris Visite transit pass if you get Zones 1-5.
  • RER: Yellow C line, Versailles Château Stop
  • RER: Yellow C, Purple U, or Auqa N Lines from the Versailles Chantiers Stop.  The trains going to the Chantiers stop are more frequent, and it is only a couple minutes more to walk to the Palace.
How to get around in Versailles:

Versailles is compact, but you will be walking a lot to enjoy the Palace and its gardens.  We recommend walking around Versailles, but be sure to wear good walking shoes that day.

Insider Tips for Versailles

  • If you are planning on visiting Versailles, and buying the Paris transit pass, make sure it includes Zones 1-5.  Including those zones will not only cover your airport transportation to Paris, but will also include your day trip to Versailles.
  • Wear good walking shoes that day.  The Palace and gardens are massive.
  • How do I avoid having everyone be rude to me while in France?  Politely ask in French if they speak English, before asking them your question… “Bonjour, parlez-vous anglais?” If you start like that you will usually get a “yes” and find the local you are talking to is quite friendly.  If you just walk up to them and start asking your question in English, assuming they do, watch them pretend they don’t understand what you’re saying.  Watch other tourists make this mistake and smile that you know better…

Clear Travel Summary

Versailles is a great day trip from central Paris and can be seen in a day.  The town is easily accessible by the regional trains and the Palace is included in the Paris Museum Pass.  The Palace and Gardens are seriously impressive and make Versailles a “must see” while you are in Paris.  If you want to be sure to see the Gardens in addition to the Palace, be sure to check the event schedule for the Garden closures.

In our opinion, Versailles is one of the most impressive palaces in all of Europe.  You can enjoy the Palace, wander the immaculate gardens, and enjoy some quiet French backstreets all in the same day.  Worth the trip!


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