Awakening To Versailles

Bonjour mes amis,

It’s the way we visit Versailles which counts. Most people either walk around themselves following the endless throng of tourists with or without audio attached to ears and some take a guided tour following experts in the field of French History and the movements of the Kings and Queens of France before and after The Revolution.And that’s all good.

Inside, you will see the State Rooms and the Hall of Mirrors where The Treaty of Versailles was signed after WWI, and don’t forget the over the top Baroque designed Grand Apartments of Louis XVI and especially the floral queen Marie Antoinette with her hidden door beside the bed (perhaps for lovers or escaping the revolutionary mob?).

Such a lavishly decorated room with gilding and frills,  my only regret was that I could not get my hands on a small sample of Maria Antoinette’s curtain fabric for my quilts!

As I was saying, walking around is fine for the inside of the palace but when you want to see as much of the wonderful green Palace surrounds as possible, going by foot has its limitations. So, this is what I’m suggesting….

A tiny fraction see Versaille Gardens in a unique way like I did- in an elegant horse drawn carriage, with the wind in your ears and the sound of clod hopping hooves (without the  crackling whip) underneath!

“A horse is a horse of course, of course” but this kind of drama would  befit a King or Queen ( I was reminded of Marie Antoinette’s sleigh rides in winter) and my french awakening ran riot as we paced the four corners of Versailles Gardens pulled by a majestic, heavy cream coloured horse.

Visit the Queen’s Hamlet and Temple of Love this way. The carriage ride adds to the romance of it all and being up that little bit higher, there are no tourist heads impinging your view- a photographer’s dream!

Take a look and picture yourself in one of these beauties. Isn’t it just magnificent?

The Royal Stables and Academy of Equestrian Arts can be visited as well this way. Book into the fantastic dressage session for a unique display of superb Lusitanian horses from Portugal.  Louis XIV favoured this breed of horses way back then and he was so proud of his six hundred or so horses.

Check out the official site of versailles at http://www.chateauversailles.fr/homepage

for all the information you need plus interactive map and where you can buy your entry ticket online to save the queues.

Remember though, that the Palace of Versailles is CLOSED on a Monday all year round but the Garden is open every day (except on a Monday in LOW season November to March).

Versailles is absolutely spectacular so I urge you to go. It’s  only a half hour train trip from Gare St Lazare, Paris.

You won’t be disappointed!

Au Revoir,

Best Wishes, Therese Waddell

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One Response to “Awakening To Versailles”

  1. […] Getting around this garden by horse drawn carriage can be loads of fun. Take a look here:  https://myfrenchawakening.wordpress.com/2010/01/14/awakening-to-versailles/ […]

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