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Versailles

Trip Planner Europe  /  France  /  Ile-de-France  /  Yvelines  /  Versailles

Royal Paradise

Renowned for its vast royal palace and gardens built by King Louis XIV, Versailles is also one of the wealthiest suburbs of Paris and home to a new cultural notability, such as a thriving artistic and musical scene. Consider taking a guided tour of the Château de Versailles that allows you to bypass the long lines at the public entrance to the palace and the grounds. Born out of the will of a king, the city in the Yvelines department of the Île-de-France region has a symmetrical grid of streets making Versailles a very modern European city by 17th-century standards; in fact, Washington D.C. builders used that style as a model.

A short walk into the town may be a welcome contrast to the hectic, tourist-filled château, with a handful of small, historic churches and local shops lining the main street. Most people do not regard this city for a hopping nightlife, but there is a little concentration of bars and restaurants at the junction of the Rue de la Paroisse and Rue du Maréchal Foch. For shopping other than scavenging for souvenirs, head to Boulevard de La Reine, Rue Chantiers, and Rue Mar Joffre, then head west for a look at an exciting assortment of historic buildings. Explore the family-friendly attractions of Versailles and add them to your vacation plans using our France travel itinerary maker.
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Where to stay in Versailles

Though you can visit the palace of Versailles on a day trip from Paris, travelers interested in exporing outside the château should consider staying in the town of Versailles, Rambouillet, or Fontainebleau. All three of these boast historical centers and a number of accommodations for visitors, from swanky hotels to short-term apartment rentals. You may want to avoid the other nearby towns, like Senlis, which don't offer any lodging in their old town centers. To put yourself within walking distance of the grand palace, pick a spot along the main avenue in the town of Versailles. When staying here, you can experience first-hand what city planners took into consideration when building this new capital.
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