Versailles: should I go?

Old Jun 6th, 2014, 07:06 PM
  #21  
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That's for the all the replies! They make me feel more satisfied with the most recent turn of events. Namely, that fortunately (?) for me, my dad solved my problem for me by booking us all for a tour. Apparently, this tour takes 4 hours. Since we're leaving the apartment (we rented for the week) at 830 in the morning, I'm hoping I'll still have some time to do something in the city in the evening. As for Versailles, I'm going, and I fully intend to enjoy it.

Compromise, I suppose.

But really, thanks for all the input! I've really enjoyed reading all your thoughts about Versailles. While I'm definitely not huge on crowds, it is starting to sound like it's more worthwhile than I thought
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Old Jun 6th, 2014, 07:07 PM
  #22  
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Just in case that's not quite clear, a tour of Versailles. And that should be THANKS, not that's
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Old Jun 6th, 2014, 07:17 PM
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First time I visited Versailles it was during a winter storm and we trod carefully across ice covered cobblestones. Have been back in summer heat, in crisp autumn, for night time fireworks and musical tableaux on the grounds, even a midnight masked ball. Yeah, I think you should go. As noted, it's not really a day trip like, say, Normandy - it's a Paris suburb, really. Do get advance tickets to shorten the wait if going in high season.
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Old Jun 6th, 2014, 07:20 PM
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I will tell you what we did when our son's fiancée said she wanted to go to Versailles on our one week trip to Paris. I said I would not go--DS said--if she wants to go, we're going. I said fine. Let's play it by ear and you all can go later in the week. Came to be later in the week and in a "planning time" I mentioned "you all are going to Versailles in the next couple of days". When faced with that with what else everyone wanted to do they said "we don't have time!!!!" My suggestion is always to leave it as a possibility. Have the plans at hand for easy utilization.
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Old Jun 6th, 2014, 08:02 PM
  #25  
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My reaction was not unlike StCirq's or tuscanlifedit's: I found Versailles painfully and sadly ostentatious, and I wasn't overly fond of the long wait or crushing throngs of other visitors either. That said, I'm glad I saw it for the perspective that the palace itself, and the hameau, gave me. And I did like the gardens!

Do report back on your take on it!
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Old Jun 6th, 2014, 09:26 PM
  #26  
 
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I am glad you have decided to make the best of a decision already made for you. Your family must really want to go and I hope you will enjoy the experience. I have enjoyed my trips there and I hope you will, too.
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Old Jun 6th, 2014, 11:01 PM
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I didn't really care if I went or not but my husband and family wanted me to go and I am so glad that I did. We took a guided tour from Paris and it was wonderful. She got us in easily and quickly and was very knowledgeable. We loved it and were so very glad we did go on the tour. I think you will be pleasantly surprised.
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Old Jun 7th, 2014, 06:25 AM
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to me the palace itself and its sadine city tour is 2nd bananas just to seeing this sprawling place so famous in history and the vast gardens and grounds. Go on weekends - at least some in summer for Les Grandes Eaux Musicales - when classical music is piped in and the zillions of fancy water fountains (not for drinking) perform a zany dance to the tunes - makes the place special - but those who just take the claustrophobic tour may be disappointed if that is all they do - but most will still have loved having seen it, travail and all.

It's like going to Manhattan and saying the Statue of Liberty is too crowded - don't go there - or in Paris Notre-Dame, always a mob scene - don't go there, etc.

Certain things have to be seen or at least most ordinary travelers want to see the highlights of each city, like them or not. But I understand that is not everyone's cup of tea.
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Old Jun 7th, 2014, 06:27 AM
  #29  
 
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http://www.chateauversailles-spectac...fountains-show

From official site details about the Musical Fountains Show in the Versailles gardens.
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Old Jun 7th, 2014, 06:49 AM
  #30  
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Honestly, I'm sure I'll love it. When I had a choice I was hemming and hawing about it, but now that I know I'm going, I fully intend to enjoy it. I'm a pretty easy-going tourist, really

I'm going to ask my dad for details of what the tour actually includes. Maybe we can bring a picnic lunch and enjoy the grounds afterwards?
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Old Jun 7th, 2014, 06:50 AM
  #31  
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Oh, and PalenQ: he booked our tour for a Saturday morning. I didn't know about the musical fountains, that sounds lovely!
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Old Jun 7th, 2014, 08:02 AM
  #32  
 
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I want to take my Mom and my husband when we go next year. I went in 1990 on a school trip and didn't get to see much. Is there anyway to avoid the most crowded times in late October? Is there a day of the week that is less crowded? Is it preferable to avoid crowds by seeing the garden first then the palace?

Any tips appreciated.
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Old Jun 7th, 2014, 08:11 AM
  #33  
 
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Be first in line in the morning or wait until mid-afternoon.
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Old Jun 7th, 2014, 02:48 PM
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Prepay your tickets and get there on opening,,,,don't be ridiculous, this is a 'MUST see'...you are missing out!!!
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Old Jun 7th, 2014, 05:51 PM
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The best thing about "must see" places is they thin the crowds for the rest of us at the places we prefer.
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Old Jun 8th, 2014, 08:23 AM
  #36  
 
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Late getting on here. You could focus on the grounds and the Petit Trianon as opposed to the palace, although the hall of mirrors is exquisite.

An alternative may be Vaux le Vicomte. This chateua was the inspiration for Versailles as Louis XIV was not going to be outdone by Nicholas Fouquet, his finance minister.

During the summer they have candlelight visits on Sat nights....might be a less crowded alternative.
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Old Jun 8th, 2014, 08:50 AM
  #37  
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I guess I'll decide if I've been ridiculous or not after I actually go.

I definitely want to see the inside of the palace if I'm going. I'm sure it's just gorgeous. I would imagine the tour my dad booked will cover all the basics. If it doesn't cover the grounds, then we'll have to take a look at those after

Is Marie Antoinette's little faux village still around, too?
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Old Jun 8th, 2014, 09:13 AM
  #38  
 
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Is Marie Antoinette's little faux village still around, too?>

Just all rehabbed to its bucolic glory!

https://www.google.com/search?q=hame...w=1455&bih=978
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Old Jun 8th, 2014, 09:51 AM
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Great reading leading up to your trip would be Marie Antoinette by Antonia Fraser. Great info on why marie needed her hamlet to escape!
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Old Jun 8th, 2014, 01:16 PM
  #40  
 
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Go...it's really something worth doing for any Paris trip of that length.

...though, depending on your solidarity with the people, you might also feel a little bit of: Louis XVI and Marie A. deserved what they got.

SS
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