Day Three in Paris: Garden of Versailles

The Garden of Versailles is a train ride or 12 miles away from the city centre. It would take at least half a day for you to mildly experience most of it.. it is arguably the best gardens in the world, and I have seen nothing that is comparable to its immense natural spectacle of manicured sprawling gardens. If you have about three days in Paris, I would say it'll be a good addition to your traveling itinerary to head over and treat yourself some extraordinary sights. For those who are always on a lookout for 'ootd' backgrounds, jump shots, Instagram worthy backgrounds... you will never want to leave the Garden of Versailles. Every corner is your wonderland. With that, let's go: 

Itinerary for Day Three in Paris

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We took a RATP train from Gare Saint Lazare (different from Saint Lazare) to Versailles-Rive Droite ("Paris Saint-Lazare" line of Transilien L South). As this is a different train system from the usual metro lines, the RATP ticket is also more expensive at 4.20 Euros per adult. We took this route which ends up at Versailles-Rive Droite because our starting point is nearer to Gare Saint Lazare. 
Important notes for the travelers
- [SECOND ALTERNATIVE WAY] Please note that if your starting point is nearer to RER C, take RER C towards Versailles-Rive Gauche which takes you nearer to the Garden of Versailles than Versailles-Rive Droite. This map will help you understand more of this alternative way.
- This second transportation method is as advised by most traveling sites, forums and blogs.
- Trains leave on the dot punctually according to the clock at the station. Tickets are applicable to trains leaving for the same direction, so if you missed one, just wait for the next. They run at 15 minutes intervals.
- Shop for picnic food (and bring a picnic mat!) at the Monoprix at Gare Saint Lazare station.
- There is no food or drinks at Garden of Versailles, so prepare enough in your bag.

We managed to find a cheaper alternative on the way back which costs two of the usual metro tickets (bus + metro) which makes it (1.37*2) 2.74 Euros per adult. It worked out well as we got to experience both types of traveling methods. This is elaborated at the end.

We reached Versailles-Rive Droite station after slightly less than an hour. We were the only tourists around that very bright and sunny day. We pushed the turnstiles, and found ourselves flushed into the city of Versailles. We discovered that the city is more than just the gardens and the palace (chateau) itself, and our destination is quite some distance away. We began a 30-minutes walk (of what should have been 15 minutes) from the station towards the gardens. The streets were pretty confusing and the blocks were so far apart. Directions were asked, and we managed to converse with a kind and helpful local road-cleaner who pointed the right way despite language barriers.

Versailles is home to nearly 90,000 residents. The peace Treaty of Versailles, marking the ceasefire between Germany and Allied Powers, was signed and safeguarded in the Hall of Mirrors in the Palace of Versailles. For my sociology friends, you would be interested to know that this is the birthplace of postmodernist thinker, Jean Francois Lyotard.

It was extremely sunny that day and my eyes could hardly open. Sunglasses, hats, sunscreen, umbrellas - all checked. But for the sake of pictures... I'll brave the sun.

Despite the heat, there were many people at the gardens of Versailles. There was no escape - zero shade cover everywhere and a huge expanse of space before us to cover. The European summer weather is just as merciless as the year-round Equatorial heat! Perhaps we should have ducked into the palace of Versailles for a breather, but the appeal of the gardens drew us towards them more.

Important notes for the travelers
- Entrance fees to Palace of Versailles: 18 Euros for Adults- The rest of the ticket rates is complex. Read more here.
- Opening hours for Palace of Versailles: Everyday except Mondays, 12 - 5.30pm with last admission at 5pm (November 1 - March 31), Everyday except Mondays, 9am - 6.30pm with last admission at 6pm (April 1 - October 31) - Opening hours for Palace of Versailles: Everyday, 8am - 6pm (November 1 - March 31), Everyday, 8am - 8.30pm (April 1 - October 31)
- For more details, read more here.

- [SAVE THIS IN YOUR PHONE] This map of Garden of Versailles is very important to prevent yourself from getting lost.

Luckily, there are breezes once in a while. But even that was not stopping sweat from flowing down our backs like waterfalls. We needed a food break!

 There were no empty benches because all of them were occupied by someone... so thank goodness for this quiet stretch of lawn for us to rest our feet as we set our picnic mat on the grass. It was lovely to while away some time as the sun gets gentler with her rays on the land.

Roar. There is a sudden deluge of my photos here because the lighting was too good to miss! There are some jump shots.. but they are not very graceful (I might show you if you are my friend). My dance teachers will probably look at me in aghast at this horrible posture but the scenery just makes me feel like dancing so... moral of the story: not all spontaneity looks good. 

Bassin d'Apollo

We arrived at the Bassin d'Apollo after much walking - we got lost a little while trying to get our bearings. Charles Le Brun designed the centerpiece in the fountain to depict the Greek god Apollo rising from the sea in a four-horse chariot. The sight was so gorgeous. It felt like the gardens stretched all the way into the horizon - and beyond! Just around the corner we also discovered a precious stretch of forests which made for some awesome backdrop for photoshoots.

Despite spending a considerable amount of time at the Garden of Versailles, we did not manage to finish uncover all its secrets! I think there is a need to strategize properly and ration energy out if you intend to complete your experience at Versailles. Nonetheless, we enjoyed ourselves very much at this attraction and forged charming memories with the gardens.

For some important information on returning back to the Paris city centre, we took Bus 171 (accepts regular metro tickets) to metro station, Pont de Sevres (line 9) within Paris Zone 1-2. You can then take the metro line to wherever you wish to proceed from there. This method would require 2 regular metro tickets from Versailles to your destination within Paris, which is much cheaper than your return ticket by train. You should take Bus 171 from a bus stop right outside the Palace of Versailles - the bus stop is labelled Chateau de Versailles and has bus route information on this bus.
Itinerary for Day Three in Paris
1. Garden of Versailles


a travel and food blogger with a constant longing to be somewhere to makes her feel alive ☆ life's an adventure