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Palace of Versailles

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The famous Palace of Versailles (Château de Versailles) is one of the most popular attractions in France. After all, the Baroque splendor of the palace is unparalleled. Luxurious halls and the spectacular gardens with mighty fountains are an absolute highlight of any trip to Paris.

Every year, several million people flock to the opulent Palace of Versailles, so tickets should be booked in advance to avoid queues.
Klaus KainzBy Klaus Kainz
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Tickets

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Paris: Versailles Palace and Gardens Full Access Ticket
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Versailles: Palace of Versailles Timed Entry Ticket
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Tours of the gardens

Discover the secrets of the Gardens of Versailles Palace on a guided tour.
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Versailles: Skip-the-Line Tour of Palace with Gardens Access
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From Paris: Versailles Palace Guided Tour & Gardens Access
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Versailles: Guided Versailles Palace Tour and Gardens Access
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Guided Tour of the Palace of Versailles & Gardens with Round-Trip Transfers from Paris
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Tours of the palace

Learn more about the history of the French nobility and the 17th-century stately palace.
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Versailles: Skip-the-Line Tour of Palace with Gardens Access
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Versailles: Palace of Versailles Skip-the-Line Guided Tour
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Skip-the-Line Versailles Palace Tour by Train from Paris
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Palace of Versailles Skip-the-Line Tickets & Round-Trip Transfers from Paris
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More Tickets & Tours

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Versailles Palace Skip-the-Line Entrance and Breakfast
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Versailles Palace and Gardens Tour by Train from Paris with Skip-the-Line
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Paris: Gardens of Versailles Walking Tour & Palace Entry
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From Paris: Versailles Palace Ticket with Audio Guide
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10 tips for visiting the Palace of Versailles

Palace of Versailles | Flickr: Anna & Michal CC BY 2.0
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Plan your trip in advanceThere are over 2,300 rooms in the Palace of Versailles. So, you won't be able to see everything during your visit. Think in advance about which areas interest you the most. The royal apartments in the Grand Trianon are particularly impressive and are adorned with motifs from Greek and Roman mythology. In the Hercules and Diana Hall, mighty marble statues stand under elaborately designed ceilings. The famous Hall of Mirrors in Versailles was also one of the state rooms: banquets and colorful evenings, as well as the signing of the Treaty of Versailles in 1919, took place here. The chapel, which depicts the Trinity on its ceiling, is also one of the highlights. You can find more details about the sights further down on our website.
Palace of Versailles | Flickr: Anna & Michal CC BY 2.0
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Visit the gardensThe park and garden areas are open longer than the interior rooms of the palace. Make use of the time accordingly. After all, baroque garden art has rarely been as impressive as in Versailles. The construction of the fountains allows for a variety of water games and the fountains are adorned with sculptures that are modeled after Greek gods and mythical creatures. In addition to the fountains, the gardens of Versailles also offer many other attractions, including statues, sculptures, and flower beds, which express the elegance of baroque garden art.
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Even more attractions with the Paris Museum PassIf you are visiting multiple museums in Paris, it is worth considering a Paris Museum Pass: It includes the ticket for Versailles and Trianon as well as over 50 other museums in Paris. The only exception is the gardens on days when the musical fountain shows or other events take place in the musical gardens - tickets for these must be purchased separately.
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Free entry to the Palace of VersaillesAs a teenager or as an EU citizen under 26 years old, you can enter this fairytale palace complex for free. But be careful! Despite free admission, tickets must be booked online.
Palace of Versailles | Unsplash: Louis Paulin
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Dining and picnicking at the palaceInside the palace itself, there are many restaurants and cafés.Angelina and Ore offer breakfast and lunch. In the evenings, Ore turns into Ducasse au Château de Versailles, led by Michelin-starred chef Alain Ducasse. The Brasserie de la Girandole is located in the center of the gardens and offers a terrace or the option to take food away. At the border of the garden and the park, the restaurant La Petite Venise serves Italian cuisine. The kiosk La Flottille offers sandwiches, salads, and drinks. Those who prefer to bring their own food can enjoy a free picnic in the park between the palace and Trianon.
Palace of Versailles Sculpture and Fountain | G CHP - CC BY-SA 2.5
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Travel by train, bus, bike or boatThe huge palace complex of Versailles contains a lot of space, over 3 square miles to be exact, and accordingly much room to move through. For an extra charge, you can explore Versailles with a small train or with boats on the Grand Canal. Those who want to get to the attractions faster can even rent a bike. For people with motor disabilities, there are also shuttle buses and small golf carts.
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Visit the fountain showsDuring the musical fountains show (Grandes Eaux Musicales), the fountains are choreographed to classical music. On some evenings, the show takes place in the dark, making the fountains even more magical. Tickets for the shows must be booked separately, but times vary. Check the homepage for when the next shows take place.
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Participate in group toursThe Palace of Versailles can be quite overwhelming. As a result, public and private guided tours are available with guides who are knowledgeable about the palace's history. However, the fixed prices for these tours are not exactly cheap. Accordingly, your group should ideally be as large as possible so that each person pays as little as possible – the maximum group size is 25 people.
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Explore the palace with the appAlternatively to the guided tours, there is also a free app for the palace available on iOS and Android. The virtual guide includes information about the attractions in French, English, Spanish, Italian, German, Polish, Russian, Ukrainian, Portuguese, Korean, Mandarin, and Japanese. Just grab your smartphone and explore Versailles on your own!
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Virtual Tours of the PalaceNot yet convinced whether Versailles offers the attractions you're looking for? Several virtual tours under this link can help, where you can easily explore the exhibitions from home using your browser.
Versailles Fountains | Unsplash: Rafael Garcin

Palace of Versailles – the spectacular buildings in detail

Versailles overwhelms guests with its Baroque extravagance spread over more than 3 square miles. Its fairytale-esque attractions are divided into three main areas: the palace, the Grand Trianon, and the garden. Tickets get more expensive depending on how much you want to visit. So consider in advance which area fascinates you the most.

Grand Trianon

The so-called Grand Trianon, also known as the pleasure palace, is a key part of the Palace of Versailles. The palace park was created as a retreat for the king and includes gardens, a chapel, a colonnade, and many apartments as well as family and recreation rooms of the former nobility. No expense was spared in the architecture, with each room showcasing spectacular interior design. Each space is richly decorated and furnished with valuable furniture and artwork. Visiting the Grand Trianon offers you a unique insight into the life of the old French nobility.

The Hall of Mirrors in the Palace

Among the most magnificent attractions in Versailles is the Palace's Hall of Mirrors. Over 73 m (230 ft) long, the grand hall contains 357 mirrors that capture the light and to brighten the room. In addition, numerous paintings can be found here, which tell of the political successes of old France. In the 17th century, it served as a reception hall for royal guests - that's why it had to leave a great impression. Following this are the War and Peace Rooms, which served as workspaces for the king and as a place for diplomacy. The rooms are not lacking in splendor; both are decorated with elaborate wall hangings and paintings.

The Fountains

The gardens of the Palace of Versailles have inspired gardens worldwide. The basic idea: to bring nature into symmetry, expressing the power of the owner over his property. In Versailles, this concept reached its peak through the landscape gardener André le Nôtre. Between 1662 and 1700, under his direction, the largest garden in Europe was created. The garden is full of intimate areas, but when viewed from the palace windows, it seems to extend beyond the horizon. Fountains and water features with mythical motifs are particularly spectacular during performances with musical accompaniment. In total, 221 sculptures and statues of gods and goddesses, nymphs, giants, and other beings can also be found within the facility.
Versailles | Unsplash: Louis Paulin

The Palace of the Sun King - the most important facts

Versailles Palace contains over 400 years of history. Its design, which makes it so famous today, is primarily credited to King Louis XIV. Known as the Sun King, this absolute ruler spared no expense and transformed his then residence into a lavish baroque building full of pomp.

The Origins of Versailles Palace

French King Louis XIII initially built a hunting lodge on the grounds of what would later become the Palace of Versailles. His successor, Sun King Louis XIV, expanded the complex lavishly and added impressive gardens, making it the archetype of a Baroque residential palace. The rooms for the king, queen, and crown prince were adorned with gilded ornaments and painted ceilings. Louis XIV also built the Grand Trianon as a pleasure palace for the royal family.

The Transitional Period

Since the reign of Louis XIV, all subsequent kings ruled from Versailles. Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette did not make any major changes to the palace, only adding a reconstruction of a small French village (Hameau). During the French Revolution in 1789, when the lower classes shattered the rule of the nobility, the royal couple remained in Versailles until October, but had to flee to Paris after thousands of people besieged the palace. Both were executed by guillotine in the following years, after the monarchy was overthrown.

Versailles after the end of the monarchy

After the abolition of the monarchy, the interior of the complex was auctioned off and the buildings were used for other purposes. Napoleon refused to use Versailles as his seat and only frequented the Grand Trianon for a few springtimes. Nevertheless, the symbolic significance of the Palace of Versailles remained after the French Revolution and during the Napoleonic Wars – especially in diplomacy. The Treaty of Versailles, which ended World War I, was signed here in 1919.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Versailles accessible for disabled persons?

The palace complex is fundamentally wheelchair-friendly with lifts and ramps. In an emergency, you can ask the staff for assistance. People with disabilities and one accompanying person each have free access. Read more.

How long does a visit to the Palace of Versailles take?

Between half a day and a full day should be planned for visiting the complex. An afternoon or morning is probably enough for the palace or the Trianon. If you want to see both or book a guided tour, a whole day is recommended. Read more.

Is there an audio guide?

Yes, audio guides are available for an additional charge. Read more.

Can I take my stroller?

Strollers are allowed in the gardens, but not inside the palace. Read more.

Do I have to walk the entire way?

No, shuttle buses run regularly between the palace and the Grand Trianon. Read more.

General information

opening hours

The Palace of Versailles is open daily from 9:00 AM to 6:30 PM from April to the end of October, and from 9:00 AM to 5:30 PM from November to the end of March. The Trianon is open from 12:00 PM to 6:30 PM from April to the end of October, and from 12:00 PM to 5:30 PM from November to the end of March. NOTE: The palace and Trianon are always closed on Mondays. The gardens are open daily from 8:00 AM to 8:30 PM from April to the end of October, and from 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM from November to the end of March. The park opens one hour earlier at 7:00 AM.

address

Versailles Palace
Place d'Armes
78000 Versailles
France

tickets

There are different tickets for the various sections of the Palace of Versailles. The Passport at €21.50 includes access to the entire palace complex. Access to the Trianon costs €12, and the palace costs €19.50. Shows must be booked separately. Fountain shows during the day cost €10.50, and €31 at night. These ticket prices are for adults. The audio guide has an additional cost of 5 €.There are also discounts and free admission for certain age groups.

how to get there

Versailles is easily accessible from Paris by public transportation: The RER line runs from the center of Paris to Versailles Château - Rive Gauche station, which is a 10-minute walk from the Versailles Palace. Otherwise, SNCF trains run from Gare Montparnasse to Versailles Chantiers or from Gare Saint Lazare to Versailles Rive Droite. Both stations are less than a 20-minute walk from the palace complex. From Tuesday to Sunday, there is also the Versailles Express with three time slots: outbound at 7:45 and return at 15:15, outbound at 9:45 and return at 15:15, or outbound at 13:30 and return at 18:00. Prices start at 24 € for online booking. On site, there are 2 parking lots, one in front of the palace and one in the park. Parking is free for disabled guests, otherwise it costs 3 € for a motorcycle, 6 € for a car, or 30 € for a bus.
Klaus Kainz
Written byKlaus KainzAs a studied historian, Klaus is not only interested in historical sights, but also in their fascinating backgrounds. For TicketLens, he gets to the heart of the most interesting information about attractions and travel destinations.
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