Eurotrip 2019 - Versailles and Paris
Having a car can make getting around on vacation less stressful in many ways. Yes, driving in unfamiliar places can be a bit scary, but getting to set your own schedule is great. The day we left Disneyland Paris, we let ourselves sleep in, and we decided to stop by Versailles before heading into Paris. Getting to Versailles wouldn’t have been impossible if we didn’t have the car, but it would have been more time consuming, and we would have had to pay attention to train schedules and plan our day out much more meticulously. While driving in Europe might not be for everyone, if you’re not in big cities, it’s so, so convenient.
Versailles makes me understand why French “peasants” weren’t super thrilled with the aristocracy. I can’t imagine living in squalor while the rich folks are plating their palaces with gold and adorning room after room with fancy marble, ornate furniture and velvet upholstered walls.
We were hoping the heat was going to keep people away, but it was a verrrrry busy day at the Palace of Versailles. It was gorgeous, and the hall of mirrors was something else, but walking through those rooms often felt like being in a herd of slow-moving cattle. We didn’t spend much time at all in the gardens because of the heat, but I’d imagine a cooler day with fewer people would be very fun.
After Versailles, we headed into Paris, and we did ditch our car there. When in big cities with good public transportation, we don’t see the point of a car, especially if you’re only there for a couple days and you won’t be venturing too far.
After dropping off the car, we checked into our hotel which had air conditioning THANK GOD. We got to Paris on their hottest day in recorded history - 108 degrees! Had we had a longer stay, we probably would have just stayed in, but because we only had 2 nights, we decided to brave it and go out in the heat, and first I took Nathaniel fabric shopping with me.
A couple years ago I made a skirt out of beautiful linen with the Moulin Rouge printed on it, and, the dork that I am, I needed a picture of me in my skirt in front of the Moulin Rouge. I even brought a beret with me! I also dragged Nathaniel fabric shopping and we had a delicious dinner, and headed back to the hotel.
The next day we visited Atelier de Lumieres, where they currently have an immersive Van Gogh exhibit, which I highly recommend going to if you can make it before the end of 2019. I took lots of pictures and video, but they truly don’t do the experience justice.
We also went into Sainte-Chapelle. I was bummed that I wasn’t going to get to see the Rose Windows in Notre Dame, but St. Chappelle isn’t far and is basically 100% stained glass, so I was happy to get to see that. We did walk around Notre Dame and I’m very impressed by all the restoration happening. I also found a small painting to take home in one of the stands by the Seine.
We spent some time looking at the restoration of Notre Dame. It’s pretty impressive and actually quite interesting to look at. I’m sure it will be as good as new (or old?) in less time than we could imagine, and I look forward to visiting again sometime to see it.
That night I dragged Nathaniel back to the Eiffel Tower at night because I wanted to see the twinkly lights, and I wanted more pictures in my handmade silk dress.
The next morning we caught a train to London. It was not nearly enough time in Paris, but I guess I’ll just have to go back soon 😉