Versailles, Part One

The last time I visited Versailles was at least a good decade and a half ago, in the dead of winter, and I swore I would find a nicer day to return for a better look once my toes and fingers thawed out. So seven weeks ago I picked a Sunday and hoped that the calendar at the Versailles website was correct in estimating that day to be “somewhat not so crowded.” It was my only Sunday left that was free so I didn’t have much choice in the matter anyway. All I can say is that in the fifteen years of technological advancement, there is still no real way to measure how popular any historical landmark/attraction is around the world when you happen to want to visit it:

Well, sure, when you first get to the golden gates of Versailles, you are jumping around (like in my first photo) in excitement, amazed by the enormous structure in front of you…

and then suddenly, hundreds, no, thousands (maybe millions) of people appear from seemingly nowhere. So you get lots of these shots on your camera…

when you really want these:

As you can see, I resorted to shooting at corners and ceilings to avoid capturing the robust crowd…

As we do the sardine-walk/push from room to room, every chance I get I would look out the windows for some air…

I just have to survive the famous Hall of Mirrors…

the Battles Gallery…

the First Empire rooms (my favorite actually)…

and then the claustrophobia would go away. It is amazing to me that with so much foot traffic day after day this place can maintain its brilliance.

I wonder what their utility bills must be like every month? Or the gardening bills? At least the wear and tear is covered by the brisk commerce happening on the grounds:

Are you quite dizzy from the all the noise in my photos yet? I think it must be lunch time according to this clock with the symbol of the Sun King…

so I’ll leave you here at the end of Versailles, Part One. I think there are some steps in front of the Mesdames’ Apartments with my name on them for a baguette break…

But don’t look too closely–the patterns of the floor can make your head spin a little:

I’ll be waiting behind this door in the next post…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *