First full day in Paris. My plans called for me to dedicate the first half of my day to visit the Palace of Versailles and that’s precisely what I did, though I did have a bit of a lie in. There was actually a Franprix grocery store directly across from my Airbnb, but I got back too late to manage to snag breakfast from there like I did in just about every other city I was in. So I resolved to having Oreos and instant coffee from my food pack.
My route to Versailles will involve getting from Saint-Placide to Saint-Michel – Notre Dame on the Line 4 metro, followed by a trip on the RER C to Gare de Versailles Château Rive Gauche. All in it’s about an hour’s trip. Now, the t+ ticket isn’t valid for the entire duration of this journey, because Versailles is in Zone 4 and the t+ only covers Zone 1 of the RER network. So, I had to use a €1.90 t+ for the Line 4 ride, followed by a separate €3.55 ticket to Versailles. Both of those are one-way tickets. I did consider the Mobilis, sort of a one-day unlimited pass, but I don’t think that it was valid on the RER and even if it did, paying so much more for just a single return trip out to one destination in Zone 4 is a no brainer.
I reached Versailles at around 11am, there was a bit of a walk from the RER station to the palace itself. But my god, the crowd is just mind boggling. Past the cursory security checks was a sea of people, part of the reasons why I passed on visiting the interior.
First impression was: Wow, whoever built this place sure liked the colour gold. The fences were gold, the gates were gold and from a few pictures that I’ve seen of the interior, there was bling everywhere. Though, it doesn’t mean that you’re out of things to see if you chose not to visit the interior! The gardens and exterior architecture was fascinating for me. I was particularly captivated by the landscaping, and the amount of effort they’ve put into it.
After lingering around the gardens for quite some time, it was time for me to seek out lunch. I did, however, manage to get a few snaps of the interior from some of the doors. It appears that the areas that I photographed was closed to the public.
What did I have for lunch? Of course, I resolved to sample McDonald’s in every country that I went! Nothing special though, just a Triple Cheeseburger with potatoes (wedges?) instead of the regular fries, and beer! Not something that you’ll see in Malaysia, I can assure you that much about the beer and the potatoes. A rather poor choice of food, I know. Damage to the wallet’s €7.50, thankfully the ketchup and sauce weren’t charged extra this time round, or did they already incorporate the cost into the overall bill?
It was also a poor choice of location on my end though. Part of the motivation for going to McDonald’s is that I just wanted a quick bite and get back into downtown Paris for more sightseeing, but only when I walked back to the Rive Gauche station did I realize that there was another McDonald’s right across the street from it.
Well… Maps said that the other one was the closest to me at that point of time. But I did get to see quite a number of things with that little detour: A painter out on the street with his canvas and easel, a clock with a background of flowers, a war memorial, roadside electric vehicle charging stations and some more.
Next station: Champ de Mars- Tour Eiffel!