Palace Of Versailles Overview

The Palace of Versailles is the former residence of the French monarchs and is famous for its architectural grandeur and its political significance in French history. King Louis XIII built a chateau in Versailles to serve as a hunting lodge in the early 1600s. Later King Louis XIV commissioned this extravagant Palace which took 40 years to complete. Today, this magnificent work is a UNESCO World Heritage site and is one of the most visited attractions in Paris

The palace of Versailles happens to be a lavish complex and a former residence of the royal kingdom outside the city of Paris. The palace of Versailles is located at a distance of 10 Km from the city centre of Paris. The structure has deep connections with the political history of Paris as it represents an age in the history of French's rise as a power and fashion centre in the world.

This place has also deep connections with the French Revolution as it happened to be one of the largest urban centres in France. Enhanced by exploring Europe trip, The palace of Versailles in the initial days was primarily used as a hunting lodge where the royal family used to spend the night if they were not able to return to Paris. With time nearby lands were bought and the construction of other expansions began under the reign of Louis XII.

With a blend of various architectural designs, this palace had been constructed in a futuristic style with most of the imported raw materials. Palace of Versailles casts its magical spell on the visitors by its halls of mirrors fashioned with 357 mirrors bought from Venice, the royal garden ornamented with statues and flowery plants, and the royal chapel that was a torchbearer of many European church designs.

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• The Palace of Versailles is one of the largest and most extravagant palaces in Europe.
• The Hall of Mirrors with over 300 segments of mirrors and crystal chandeliers is one of the best rooms in the Palace
• The beautiful Gardens of the Palace designed by Andre le Jotre with more than 221 sculptures, is one of the largest outdoor museums of sculptures in the world.
• The Queen's Hamlet is a model village following Normandy style which Marie Antoinette used as a respite from Palace etiquette and for her informal social gatherings.
• The Palace has some of the most fascinating collections of paintings and sculptures that depict the French history of that era.
• The Gardens of the Palace is one of the most spectacular gardens in the world with hundreds of thousands of flowers and trees, 55 water bodies, 600 fountains and 372 statues.Suggested Read: Best Things To Do In VersaillesCheckout & Book Now : Seine River Cruise

How To Reach

1. By Metro: The Palace of Versailles can be reached by the metro trains connecting every single part of the city. You can take the RER C train which will directly take you to the Le Château de Versailles.

2. By Bus: You can also reach the Palace of Versailles by the local bus service. It takes about 35 mins to reach the palace from the Paris city centre.

3. By Bike/Car: If you are familiar with the routes of Paris, then it would be better to drive down to the palace in your private or rental vehicle. You will have the liberty to stopover in between them to make the most out of the city tours as well. 

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Best Time To Visit

The best time to visit the Palace of Versailles in France is in the course of the spring season that lasts from the month of March to the month of May and again in the course of the autumn season which lasts from the month of September to the month of November.

It is the best time to visit to come over to the Palace of Versailles and spend time witnessing its artistic marvels and architectural marvels as the prices of accommodation happen to be a bit less compared to the rest of the year. This is also the time when you will find very less number of tourists.

1. Winter Season

The winter season lasts for a couple of months making the surrounding cold and wet with continuous snowfall. It can also be a good time to come over to France and visit a number of other tourist attractions.

2. Summer season

The Palace of Versailles receives a huge number of tourists in the summer season and you will not be able to spend good time at the palace because of its crowded surroundings. It is also very hot and expensive to stay in.

The best time to visit the Palace of Versailles in a day would be in the afternoon hours. The Palace is usually crowded in the morning hours and it would not be a good time to explore the museum. Come In the afternoon hours to create and capture memoirs. 

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Other Essential Information

Location: The famous Palace of Versailles is located at Place d'Armes, 78000 Versailles, France. 

Price: There is no entry fee for pedestrians at the Palace of Versailles. However, if you are coming in a vehicle, then you would need to pay €3 for a motorcycle, €6 for a car, and €30 for a bus. In addition, if you are opting for a guided tour of the palace, then you would also need to pay €7 for adults.

Timings: The Palace of Versailles remains open from 9 AM in the morning to 5:30 PM in the evening on all days except Monday. Monday is the weekly holiday and all maintenance and cleaning work are scheduled on the same day. 

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Secrets from The Palace of Versailles

Here are some secrets about the Palace of Versailles that will surprise you:

1. The Palace of Versailles happened to be a hunting lodge for the royal family

Louis XIII bought a piece of land and constructed a chateau on it as he loved hunting. He used to stay in the hunting lodge at the nighttime if he had insufficient time to return to Paris or Saint Germain en Laye for darkness.

The chateau was again subjected to further expansion with the purchase of new land close to it and which paved the path for Louis XIV to convert the hunting lodge into a wonderful palace. The same palace was also in use as the government offices of the French government and also as courtrooms.

2. The essence from the garden of the Palace of Versailles made visitors fall ill

The gardens at the palace happen to be one of the largest and most spectacular lush green gardens in the world. It is jam-packed with more than 372 statues, 20 miles of water pipes, and 600 fountains which all together cast a magical charm.

Being home to a large variety of plants, the smell from some of the trees were too overpowering in the 17th century that made a number of guests fall ill.

3. Mirrors were stolen from Venice to construct the hall of mirrors

The construction of the hall of mirrors in the Palace of Versailles started in the year 1678 and to make it one of the most remarkable parts of the palace, more than 357 mirrors were used. At that point in time, Venice had the monopoly of making mirrors.

France was however successful in persuading the mirror makers to come over to this place and create some special mirrors for the palace. Venetian government at that point of time that imposed strict rules on the movement of its artisans. If any violation of the law was found, then the death penalty was given. 

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Traveller tips before visiting the Palace of Versailles

  • Audio guides are available for visitors and can be picked up from either the entrance to the Mesdames or the entrance to the Gallery of Castles. 
  • The use of camera flash or mobile phone is prohibited inside the Museum. 
  • To avoid crowds, get to the Palace early or in the late evenings after the tour buses leave. 
  • Best days to visit would be Wednesday and Friday. It will be less crowded during this time. 
  • Book your tickets in advance as this will save you plenty of time.  
  • There are restaurants inside the Palace grounds where you can eat but you can also carry a packed lunch. However, you can eat your packed food only in the Park. 
  • Restrooms and baby changing rooms facilities for visitors are available in the Palace. 
  • Bicycles and golf carts are available for rent to tour the expansive gardens and park

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Day Wise Timings
Open Today
Normal Timings:
Normal Timings:
09:00 AM to 05:30 PM
Normal Timings:
09:00 AM to 05:30 PM
Normal Timings:
09:00 AM to 05:30 PM
Normal Timings:
09:00 AM to 05:30 PM
Normal Timings:
09:00 AM to 05:30 PM
Normal Timings:
09:00 AM to 05:30 PM
Point of Interest for Palace Of Versailles
Grand Trianon

Grand Trianon

The Grand Trianon is a gorgeous palace built in neoclassical style. It was added by King Louis XIV for his mistress, Madame de Montespan. The highlight of the Palace is the pink languedoc marble, elegant terraces and beautiful colonnade arcades. The palace is surrounded by a beautifully manicured French garden with orange blossoms and shrubbery.

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Place d'Armes and the Gate of Honor

Place d'Armes and the Gate of Honor

The Gate of Honor is the main entrance to the Palace of Versailles. On the north it is surrounded by the sculptures that depict the victories of France over the Empire and on the South it has the sculptures depicting the French victory over Spain.

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The Gallery of Battles

The Gallery of Battles

Gardens of Versailles

Gardens of Versailles

The Gardens of the Palace of Versailles has been designed by renowned landscape architect Andre le Notre. The designs follow a typical French formal garden with well trimmed shrubbery and beautiful lawns in geometric patterns. There are several ornamental pools with statues, flower beds and a produce garden with orange, lemon and pomegranate trees.

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The Hall of Mirrors

The Hall of Mirrors

The dazzling Hall of Mirrors is the most famous room in the Palace of Versailles and its Baroque style has been designed by famous French architect Jules Hardoin-Manzart. The Hall is 73 meters long and features large ornamental mirrors which sparkles when the sunlight enters from the windows. There are crystal chandeliers, intricate paintings on the ceiling and beautiful sculptures adorning the room

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Royal Opera of Versailles

Royal Opera of Versailles

The Royal Opera of Versailles is one of the most beautiful structures of its kind featuring neoclassical colonnades, lavishly decorated interiors, gilded bronze finish, mirrors and crystal chandeliers. The Royal Opera House plays host to numerous events throughout the year including ballet, theater, opera and concerts.

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Petit Trianon

Petit Trianon

The Petit Trianon was built as a retreat for Louis XV and his mistress. Later, Louis XVI presented the estate to his wife Marie Antoinette. The Petit Trianon features a beautiful English Garden, winding pathways, a meandering stream, waterfalls and a grotto. The main attraction here is the Temple de l'Amour, a beautiful decorative structure resembling a Greek temple. 

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The Empire Rooms

The Empire Rooms

The 13 Empire Rooms are dedicated to Napoleon Bonaparte by King Louis-Philippe who was trying to garner the support of his people as well as the Bonapartian supporters. There are two massive paintings - The Coronation of Napoleon and The Distribution of the Eagle Standard- that adorn the main Empire room adjoining the royal apartments.

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The Queen's Hamlet

The Queen's Hamlet

The Queen's Hamlet is a fantasy model village which Marie Antoinette used as an escape from court politics and Palace formalities. There are rustic cottages with lavish interiors, farmhouses, vegetable gardens and a lake. The Queen used this hamlet for her informal social gatherings as well as a nature teaching ground for her children.

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Palace Of Versailles FAQs

Why is the Palace of Versailles famous?

The Palace of Versailles is famous for its architectural grandeur and its rich political history. It is a symbol of luxury, opulence and signifies the grand lifestyle that the French monarchs lived. Each section of the Palace has been designed and curated to perfection by renowned designers and architects of that time. 

Who built the Palace of Versailles?

The Palace of Versailles initially started as a hunting lodge for Louis XIII. He built a chateau and later bought more land to expand the grounds. However, it was Louis XIV who commissioned the Palace to Le Notre, the famous architect of that time. The entire project took 40 years to complete.

How old is the Palace of Versailles?

The Palace of Versailles is 388 years old. Louis XIII built the two storied chateau in 1634 which started off as his hunting lodge. Then from 1660 onwards Louis XIV started the construction of the Palace which took 40 years to complete.

Why visit the Palace of Versailles?

  • The Palace of Versailles throws light on the incredibly ostentatious lifestyle the French monarchs lived in the 1600 and 1700s.
  • The Palace is famous for being one of the largest and most beautiful palaces in Europe and it stands true to its word.
  • The former royal residence is a rich source of French history and a UNESCO World Heritage site located just 20 km from Paris.
  • The Palace has some of the most remarkable collections of paintings, sculptures and decorative art.
  • The Palace has several uniquely designed spaces such as The Hall of Mirrors, The War Gallery, The Queen's Hamlet, The Grand and Petit Trianon.

Are pushchairs allowed inside the palace?

No, pushchairs are not allowed inside the palace premises in order to keep all the exhibits protected from any kind of damage. Not only pushchairs, but even metal baby carriers, crutches, umbrellas, walking sticks and bulky luggage also are not allowed to take into the rooms of the exhibition halls. You would need to deposit all the things in the designated cloakroom at the entrance of the palace.

Are we allowed to take pictures inside the palace?

No, you are not allowed to capture photographs inside the premises of the palace. However, you can click pictures in the garden of the palace. In most places, usage of the flashlight is strictly prohibited and in some complete prohibition of photography is imposed. It is better to read all the rules and regulations before clicking pictures with your camera so that you don't get into sort of trouble later.

How much gold is in the Palace of Versailles?

As per the estimates, about 100,000 gold leaves have been crafted into the shape of fleur de Lys, marks of Apollo, crowns, cornucopias, and the famous cross capital Ls representing the sun king.

Can I bring bulky items into the palace?

No, you are not allowed to bring any kind of bulky item into the palace. If you have brought any bulky item, then you need to store it in the designated luggage storage area before getting an entry into the palace.

Why was the palace of Versailles built?

The palace was initially constructed as a hunting lodge. Hunting at that point of time happened to be one of the most prolific games that enticed all the royal kings to take part. King Louis VII bought the land and constructed a chateau and went for hunting trips. It was also used as a private retreat for the royal family.

How long did it take to build the Palace of Versailles?

The palace of Versailles was constructed in three different stages. The construction was started in the year 1623 and it was opened for public in the year 1634 with complete construction of less extravagant hunting lodge. The very first expansion took place from the year 1661 to the year 1678 and the second expansion was started from the year 1678 to the year 1715.

What are the three facts about the Palace of Versailles?

  • The Palace of Versailles was a massive undertaking. It has 2300 rooms, 2153 windows, 67 staircases, 1200 fireplaces and 1250 chimneys. The Palace is adorned with over 6000 paintings and more than 5000 carefully crafted and curated furniture. 
  • The Royal Opera House of Versailles was once the largest opera house in Europe with seating capacity of 700. Its speciality is the concept of faux marble where the interior is built of wood but made to look like marble.  
  • The French people hated the Palace of Versailles as the monarchs lived in luxury while the people starved. 

Palace Of Versailles Reviews

Jaimini Bhat
Reviewed: 20 Jan 2020
I had booked tickets from Thrillophilia. The overall experience was very good. Me and my family really liked the experience.
Aarya Agarwal
Reviewed: 08 Nov 2019
The pickup and drop service was really good. The guide was well informed and he gave us a hands-on tour of the entire place. The experience was very good. I would certainly like to recommend it to everyone.

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