Postcard 24.6: Palace of Versailles, France

IMG_3718_1024

Our last full day in Paris started with a day trip to Versailles — just outside of Paris — to visit the Palace of Versailles and ended with a quiet evening wandering Montmartre.

Palace of Versailles

Built in the 1600s, the historic and monumental chateau was the center of royalty, starting as Louis XIII’s hunting lodge before his son Louis XIV expanded it and moved the court and government of France to Versailles. Since then, each of the three French kings lived there until the French Revolution.

When you visit the palace, the grandiose and decorative architecture with its beaming golden gate to welcome the public is just an indication of what kind of people lived there: royalty, of course.

IMG_3650_1024
Crowds flood the front entrance of the Palace of Versailles.
IMG_3653_1024
The exterior of the Palace of Versailles.
IMG_3654_1024
The golden gate of the palace represents the richness and elegance of the palace.

Unfortunately, we were a bit pressed for time and the area was flooded with huge crowds, so we didn’t get a chance to really explore and delve into the background of the place. But I can say it is certainly a must-see if you’re in Paris.

IMG_3652_1024
Our guides, Jonathan and Agatha, summon the tour group before entering the palace.

After a long wait to get into the palace — we had to wait for individual groups to fully make their ways into the building before we could proceed — we inched our way in, sandwiched between other human beings.

If I couldn’t look left or right due to a face in my way, I could still look up at the ceiling, which presented me with quite a surprise: The ceiling was decorated with exquisite artwork depicting what looked like Heaven — angels, gods and goddesses floated amid a blue sky that seemed to stretch beyond the ceiling itself.

IMG_3658_1024
Rooms in the palace are covered in artwork from ceilings and all walls.

We then continued shuffling into the King’s State Apartment. This section of the palace includes seven rooms, each filled with intricate golden designs, lavish artwork and other ornate decorations.

IMG_3665_1024
This full length statue of Louis XIV, the centerpiece of the room, is glorified as a Roman emperor.
IMG_3667_1024
Another Louis XIV sculpture in the Diana Room.
IMG_3668_1024
Paintings in the War Room of the King’s State Apartments. The War Room glorifies the military victories leading to the Peace of Nijmegen. 
IMG_3673_1024
Inside the Palace of Versailles are elegant chandeliers to not only add light to the rooms, but to also add an air of nobility and luxury.
IMG_3682_1024
The Mercury Room is characterized by bold, red walls and furniture.

Perhaps the most impressive room of them all was the famed Hall of Mirrors. Despite the crowds, the room makes for fabulous photo opportunities, showcasing a wall with multiple mirrors opposite windows looking out to the Gardens of Versailles as well as sparkling chandeliers hanging from ceilings plastered with even more beautiful paintings.

IMG_3688_1024
The Palace of Versailles is, perhaps, most noted for the grand Hall of Mirrors.
IMG_3690_1024
Elegant chandeliers hang from the ceiling in the Hall of Mirrors.
IMG_3691_1024
The windows in the Hall of Mirrors look out to the vast Garden of Versailles.

We also made our way to the King’s and Queen’s bedchambers. Though the rooms were gorgeous, the beds looked quite uncomfortable, if you ask me! How a king and queen could really get a good night’s rest every night remains a mystery to me.

IMG_3695_1024
The king’s bed
IMG_3699_1024
The queen’s bed
IMG_3701_1024
More intricate designs decorate the queen’s bedchamber

We then headed outside to the Gardens of Versailles, a sight to behold. If you exit the palace from the back and stand at the top of the stairs, you’ll see the parterres of grass — carefully designed to focus on curves and symmetry — surrounding pretty fountains, and it seems to go on as far as the eye can see.

IMG_3722_1024
The Garden of Versailles is, in my opinion, a landscape architecture masterpiece.
IMG_3720_1024
The view from the Palace of Versailles shows the garden stretching out as far as the eye can see.

I can only imagine what it would be like to be the king or queen standing here and watching a fireworks show light up the night sky.

We perused the garden for a while, soaking in the beauty and magnanimity of it all before ending our time at the Palace of Versailles.

IMG_3716_1024
Statues embellish the fountains at the garden.
IMG_3723_1024
Me enjoying the beauty of this remarkable place.
IMG_3718_1024
The palace from the garden perspective.

4 thoughts on “Postcard 24.6: Palace of Versailles, France

    1. Thank you! Yes, although it gets really crowded, I highly recommend visiting this place if you’re in Paris. 🙂

  1. Hi Mel, So beautiful and opulent…..no wonder the poor common people revolted. It’s always a wonder to me that all of these beautiful buildings were built without the technology we have today. Our ancestors were a lot smarter than we think. I’m so glad you were able to see all these wonders and to experience being in all these wonderful places most of us just read about. Great blog!

    It’s been hectic here these past few weeks. I finally decided to buy a new bed and it was delivered this past Thursday. In the mean time, I wanted to get my room ready for the bed so Denise was here helping me move my old bed to clean under it and I had to wash all the new bedding I bought for the new bed. Several people told me about the Sleep Number bed, so I bit the bullet and got it. I’m very happy with the bed….it’s so comfortable and I don’t have all the aches and pains when I get up in the morning. I didn’t realize my old bed was so bad. Anyway, take care and looking forward to your Korea blog. Hugs, Aunty Pat

    1. Great to hear about the new bed! Comfort is key when it comes to those things. Glad the aches and pains went away. Hope you’re able to sleep better too. 🙂 Korea blogs to come soon!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s