Aaaaand I'm back.
After a week-long hiatus in Paris and Munich (and beyond) with friends and family, I've got a little catching up to do. The tablet doesn't lend itself to easy blogging, even with the keyboard, so I typically wait until I get back to edit my photos and type up my posts. Due to my OCD and my extreme need to always be early, or at least on time, this is stressful. But here goes.
Last Tuesday night I took the train up to Paris with B's cousin and her friend, and on Wednesday, we went to Versailles. I didn't know much about it, other than it was a big palace and had large gardens.
The first thing we found out about it was that it was CROWDED. Some people might not be bothered by this. I'm not one of those people. I was trying to take a picture and got shoved aside by a little bitty Chinese lady who was shorter than I am (and for those of you who don't know me personally, I'm 5'0"). If you ever feel the urge to visit a very large palace with 300,000 of your closest friends, Versailles is a great place to start.
Aside from the crowds, though, it really is a very lovely palace. We got the free audio guides and they were a great addition to get more information. All the rooms were beautiful, although it's hard to get good pictures indoors. Here are a few of my favorites.
The gardens were the truly spectacular part of this chateau, partly because they were less crowded and partly because they were just so pretty. My favorite part was the Queen's Hamlet. It reminds me for the world of the 16th century farm at Chenonceau. Even the tiny towns and workers' quarters at these huge chateaux are still really nice. I could have wandered around the gardens there forever, if the weather hadn't been quite so schizophrenic.
The bottom line is, we had a great time and Versailles is certainly worth visiting if you find yourself in France, but be prepared for the crowds. And go on a nice day so you can spend more time wandering the gardens and less time elbowing fellow tourists to see the furniture and art displays in the chateau.
After Versailles we made our way back to Paris and climbed up to Montmartre. It's a ton of uphill streets and stairs, but the view is beyond worth it.
After avoiding the sketchy street vendors selling selfie sticks and Heinekens out of a bucket, we made our way to Les Refuges des Fondues for dinner. I think I've sufficiently covered that. All in all, it was a perfect day in Paris. And of course, I had several more days in Paris, so stay tuned...