Paris, day 5 - Gardens and Bosquets of Versailles

Finally we got to our last full day in Paris. While green was busy with job-related stuff I decided to visit Versailles one more, but this time I wanted to see Versailles gardens, Trianon and Marie Antoinette's Estate. As we mentioned earlier, Gardens of Versailles are located in a Paris suburb, so it takes quite some time to get there. By the time I got there it was almost noon and the Court of the Ministers was crowded with people in lines!

Front yard
My attempt at showing the line. Start of the line is a bit to the right from the center and it goes all the way to the right where it turns around and goes back to the left, and then back to the right and so on for a few more times until it gets to the last segment along entire building of north alley of ministers (right in the center on this picture) and

it's going all the way along the golden gates to the main entrance on the left:

Front yard
In fact this is already a second line, for people with tickets. And of course there was a yet another line to get the tickets in the building of south alley of ministers, though I skipped part of it by using self-service ticket-selling machine that had a much-much shorter line!
I also tried to ask if I need to stand in the long line if I only want to get into the garden, but I was told that yes I must be in this line, because the bags must be checked and so on :( All of this took a considerable amount of time of course.

The Water Parterres
And finally we are inside, right behind the palace, this part is called Water Parterre.

The Water Parterres

The Water Parterres

I want to immediately note that this is where the mini-train to Trianon and Marie Antoinette's Estate departs from (distance is 1500m). The train has a few stops along the way and it moves in a counter-clockwise loop. It was my mistake not to take a look at the route, so when after walking in the garden for quite a while I got to the next stop (straight distance from point of departure ~1000m), it turned out that the stop is on the way back part of the route! And so I did not get to Trianon :(

But returning to the Versailles gardens.
Latona fountain and parterre

Latona fountain and parterre
Behind the Water Parterres we see Latona fountain and parterre.

Latona fountain and parterre
Latona fountain.

Latona fountain and parterre

Latona fountain and parterre

The Royal Walk
A view to the Royal Walk and the Grand Canal.

Latona fountain and parterre
Nice flower lawns were established by the sides, so I was a bit delayed here...

flower

flowers

Rose

flower

flowers

Latona fountain and parterre

flowers

flowers
The roses had a really nice sweet smell.

flowers

flowers

flowers

flowers

flowers

flowers

flowers

flowers

flowers

flowers

flowers

flowers

Gardens of Versailles with flowers, lawns, ponds and statues made by the project of Andre Le Notre in 1661 implement ideal model of a French formal garden. Total area of the gardens is 2224 acres.

statue

flowers
Palace view from the garden.

Achelous statue
Statue of  Achelous.

Trail to the ballroom

The Ballroom
And this is The Ballroom. In the past water used to flow by these steps made out of stones and seashells brought here from coasts of Africa and Madagascar. At the very top musicians used to seat.

The Ballroom
Green steps of the amphitheater were used as seats for the viewers. In the center there used to be a marble islet that was used for dancing.

The Ballroom

The Ballroom
Lead floor lamp covered with gold.

The Ballroom

The Ballroom

In the gardens

The Queen's grove
The Queen's Grove.

Girandole Grove

Girandole Grove
Girandole Grove.

Cat near cafe

Cat near cafe
Also nearby I saw a Versailles cat, he was wandering around a food court and meowing at people that had food.

Girandole Grove

Mirror fountain
Mirror fountain. A musical show is held here about every 10 minutes.

Mirror fountain

Mirror fountain

Mirror fountain

The King's garden
Behind the Mirror fountain is the King's garden.

flowers

The King's garden

The King's garden

The King's garden

The King's garden

The King's garden

The King's garden

Stone rose

The King's garden

The King's garden

The King's garden

Rose

The King's garden
Alley between gardens.

Trail to Chestnuts room
The Chestnuts Room.

Near Colonnade room
Entrance to the Colonnade Grove.

Colonnade room
Colonnade Grove itself. It consists of 32 marble columns and 31 fountains.

A sculpture in the center on a round base is Pluto kidnapping Proserpine.
Statues in the Colonnade room

Statues in the Colonnade room

Statues in the Colonnade room

Achilles Statue on Royal walk
Sculpture of Achilles in Skyros.

The Royal Walk
View at the Royal walk and the palace from the other side.

Fountain of Apollo's chariot

Fountain of Apollo's chariot
Fountain of Apollo's Chariot.

Fountain of Apollo's chariot
And the same fountain from the other side.

Ino and Melicertes Statue near Fountain of Apollo's chariot
Sculpture  of Ino and Melicertes.

Then we are moving from Southern part of the gardens to the North one.

A trail

Encelade grove
The Encelade Grove. It's created in 1675 and shows giant Encelade defeated by Olympus gods and sentenced to live under Etna mountain. He's half buried by a mountain rubbish, but still fights with the death.

Encelade grove
Height of the this fountain water-stream is 25 meters (82 ft) and it's considered to be the highest of all Gardens of Versailles fountains.

Encelade grove
These nice green "vases" were placed around. ;) BTW, my shoes radically changed their color to beige just as the base of this "vase".

Encelade grove

Encelade grove

Apollon statue near Grand Canal
Statue of Apollo.

Statues around Grand Canal

Somewhere around here I found out that the mini-train from here goes only back to the palace, and it was already getting somewhat late as I needed to return back to the hotel by 7pm, so I had no other choice by to return. Walking 1000 meters was too hard at that point, so I used the mini-train to get back to the palace, the cost was 3.60 euros.

North parterre
View at the Pyramid from the North Parterre.

North parterre
Statue in North Parterre.

By the end I have not even seen half of the Gardens of Versailles, and have not even got to the Trianon and Marie Antoinette's Estate. So I think if you want to see all of it at a comfortable pace, you need to plan for at least two full days from early morning for Versailles. And don't start at noon as we did in both cases.

After returning to the hotel I met green and we went for dinner with his coworkers. Dinner was at a nice quiet Frenc restaurant Chez Papa.
Veal's scallop on fried potatoes

Veal with mushroom sauce and fried potatoes for green.

Some dish in a pan
And this was a dish for me. Veal's scallop on fried potatoes with cured ham and mushroom sauce topped with Cantal cheese. The pot itself turned out to be Le Creuset that I like so much.

Apple pie with fire
For the dessert we had Tarte tarin flame with Armagnac and Chantilly cream.
Personally I liked this place a lot. The dishes were very tasty and were of the home or country style!

Hotel room
And this is our tiny hotel room. Not much bigger than those we usually had in Japan, but four times as expensive. :~

Hotel room

Hotel room

Hotel room

On the next day we only had half of it, so while green went to do job-related stuff I packed our suitcases and also bought some more postcards and visited a post office:

post stamp
This time at the post office instead of normal post stamps a self-service postal machine gave me these printed self-adhesive "stamps" ;)

And in the afternoon we went to the airport, jumped into a plane and flew back home.

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