The Richardsons Take Europe: Palais du Versailles

Of all of our excursions in Europe, the Palais du Versailles was second only to the Eiffel Tower. The majestic halls, high engraved ceilings, and most of all expansive gardens made it a little heaven on Earth. Here are some of my favorite pictorial moments from our trip there:

Versailles is a lovely city, with vibrant colors, unique architecture, and a touch of French modernism.

Yet and still, it maintains its classical air through the presence of many historical monuments, with the most famous of these being the Great Palace.

The Palace was built under the leadership of Louis XIV, born in 1638 under what initially seemed like unfortunate circumstances. Both him and his mother were shunned and treated as paupers when he was a boy, until he eventually took the throne, where he reigned jovially. He vowed to make the Palace a place of enjoyment and wonder for all to see, contrary to the experience of his youth.

Great courtyards, expansive gardens for miles, and illustrious architecture are just a few of the wealthy representations he orchestrated.  Come along on our journey through the estate!

In order to enter the courtyard of the château, we passed through a large gate, named the “Gate of Honour.” It was restored in 2009 to maintain its brilliance.

Once you checked in and passed the touristy attractions (gift store, etc) one of the first stops on the first floor was the royal chapel, where mass was held every morning.

The first floor included exhibits and waiting rooms, similar to these. Sidebar: I need this furniture for my house! 😊

Sculpture of the “Sun King.”

Painting of Marie Antoinette and her children.

The details in the Palace were exquisite!!

No wall was left without some form of artistry or embellishment. I LOVED it.

Here continued the view of the royal chapel where the morning mass took place (view from the second floor).

Directly on the second floor, is the famous Hall of Mirrors. Mirrors were very rare at that time, and to have so many in the great hall where Louis frequently entertained (nearly every night), was a symbol of great wealth and sophistication.

The majority of ceilings in the Palace showcased some form of the Royal family as an allegory to Greek/Roman Mythology. This particular scene is of Apollo, bringing up the day (sun) on a chariot drawn by white horses.

Elaborate art works, including sculptures of oneself and family members were a must for royal families of that time period. This is a bust of Louis XIV himself, by Bernini.

After leaving the King’s State Apartments and main royal chambers, we visited the Mesdame’s Apartments, for Louis’ daughters.

The bedchambers of one of Louis XIV’s daughters.

Outside in the royal courtyard. Look at those building details!!

And now, came my FAVORITE part; the gardens!!

The gardens seemed to go on forever, with a great pond in the distance where sailboats could be rented leisure.

Endless paths and mazes of trees! I felt as if I was in every one of my favorite BBC movies (wrong country, I know!).

Singing, “The trees are alive!!…..with the sound of music!!…”

To embody the feel of the great coliseum in Rome, Louis had this area built for guests to enjoy.

ovely place to stop and rest!

e of the many fountains in the gardens of the château.

scription of the Apollo Bath Cove.

e Bath Cove of the Apollo. The original sculptures were removed and replaced for restorative purposes, and replaced by more "weather-friendly" ones.

you are fortunate enough, plan your trip around a day when the Musical Fountain Show will take place. For an extra 10 or so Euros, it enhances the experience incredibly!

ort video clip of the fountains! 😊

Ending the day with a lovely walk through Jardin du Roi, my heart was full!!

…and what better day to have a romantic full-moonlit walk??

It was all entirely perfect!! The only thing I would change? My shoes! In an attempt to be cute, I wore non-padded soles, not knowing that I would walk over 8 miles that day.

However, I would endure every foot cramp again if it meant spending the day in such a beautiful place.

I hope you enjoyed this journey through pictures as much as I did. Happy Thursday!!