Liv and I were super bummed to find that we missed this year’s Fêtes Galantes (which is a fancy dress up event) at Versailles so I started researching castles nearby to visit. I decided it would be fun to play tourists and booked a day tour with Viator. We took a luxurious air conditioned coach to Château Vaux Le Comte and Fontainebleau. I was pleasantly surprised with the group we traveled with, mostly older folks but very friendly and lovely, not obnoxious tourists types. No-one even took pictures with an iPad!
Our first stop was the Château Vaux le Comte which is a baroque French château located in Mainly just southwest of Paris. The château was constructed from 1658 to 1661 for Nicolas Fouquet, Marquis de Belle Île, Viscount of Melun and Vaux, the superintendent of finances of Louis XIV. I read that this place was the inspiration for the palace of Versailles. Olivia was in heaven. She would wear her Marie Antoinette dress everyday if we let her. It was nice to visit a place that wasn’t packed with crowds and we were able to explore the château at our own pace.
This was the tree lined road to the château!
WOW! We walked up a narrow staircase to the tower.
This was a master bathroom from the 1600s!
The kitchen was in the basement to keep the food cool. Along with the Man in the Iron Mask.
We spent so much time in the chateau that we only had 45 minutes left to explore the huge gardens. We rented a golf cart and wow, it was so fun!
We made it back just in time to our coach and drove about a half an hour to château Fontainebleau. The earliest record of a fortified castle at Fontaineau dates to 1137. It became a favorite residence and hunting lodge of the Kings of France because of the abundant game and many springs in the surrounding forest. it took its name from one of the springs, the fountain de Bliaud, located now in the English garden, next to the wing of Louis XV.
I mean, I guess it’s alright.
To top off the opulence, there was a live piano concert playing in the enchanting musicians gallery.
As we were leaving we saw several wedding parties taking photos in front of the chateau. Tell me that sky is not painted.
She literally skipped all the way home.
3 thoughts on “Visiting French castles”
Bonjour! Love Liv’s pink Marie Antoinette’s dress. I have never heard of Château Vaux Le Comte, but it is on my list during next trip to Paris. I love Versailles, but this really was Versailles without the crowds. I am thinking of spending New Years in Paris. Can you share some epic experiences I should be looking into. Sante!
Salut! I highly recommend checking out the tours on Viator.com. I really like the itineraries they offer and guided tours if you are a history buff like us. Is this your first trip to Paris? I would choose Musee d’Orsay over the Louvre. If the weather is tolerable, take a cruise on the Seine. Check out the bird market near Notre Dame on Sunday morning. Grab a cup of hot chocolate from Angelina in the 2nd. Go to Sacre Coeur to see views of the city and take le petit train de Montmartre. If you check the Paris category on my blog, I have my favorite places in the city posted. Bon Voyage!!
Thanks for sharing. Love the pics. Beautiful