Up until recently, I’d been to Versailles at least three times and maybe as many as five. The chateau is impressive in its extravagance but the manicured garden was always my favorite part. Here’s a shot I took in October 2006.
Marring the pristine beauty of the space is all the other people and the earth-movers used to swap out the plants.
Now here’s a little triptych I took just the other day.
I’d never seen this side of the property, the so-called English gardens, because they’re quite a ways away from the main chateau and aren’t an easy walking distance… but if you ride your bike, you can enjoy Versailles away from the crowds and pretend that you’re a European princess and that all that you see before you is yours.
Or, you know, you can just eat a really good sandwich that you picked up at Boulangerie Julien, located at 60 rue de la Paroisse in Versailles (the town) just off the market square and enjoy the unimpeded view.
If you have a bike, it’s an easy ride to Versailles from Paris. You can also take a bike on the RER (lock it to the center pole at the end of the car) during off-peak hours and on weekends. There are also bike tour companies that’ll lead you around the area.