The Royal Chapel

Versailles – Palace of the Sun King

Tiếng Việt

Château de Versailles – France’s most iconic and extravagant palace – does not need an introduction. With nearly six million visitors each year, its fame is hard to overlook. The grandiose estate was built in the mid-17th century for Louis XIV – the Ruler of the French Empire.


About 22 kilometres south-west of central Paris, you will find yourself at the opulent gate of the Château de Versailles. France’s most famous king, Louis XIV, claimed as Le Roi Soleil (the Sun King), ordered to built the baroque château to demonstrate the absolute power of the French monarchy, which was at the height of its glory at that time. From 1682 up until the French Revolution in 1789, Versailles became the kingdom’s political capital and the seat of the royal court.

Château de Versailles
Château de Versailles

Spreading over 63,000 m², the gigantic château contains about 2300 luxuriously decorated rooms and it required about 30,000 workers to complete. Most noteworthy chambers are the King’s State Apartments, the Royal Chapel, the Royal Opera House and the opulence reaches its peak in the Hall of Mirror (expected to see a lot of people there!).

The Royal Chapel
The Royal Chapel

The palace is surrounded by vast gardens covering some 800 hectares of land. Praised as the art of symmetry, the manicured gardens is the masterpiece of landscape artist Andre Lé Nôtre in which terraces, flowerbeds, statues, tree-lined paths, ponds and fountains are geometrically aligned.

Jardin du château de Versailles
Jardin du château de Versailles

A trip to Versailles might be incomplete without a visit to the Estate of Trianon. In an attempt to gain some brief respite from the rigid etiquette of the court, the kings of Versailles built themselves more intimate spaces close to the main palace. The Estate of Trianon is the home of the Grand Trianon, the Petit Trianon and the Queen’s Hamlet. The estate is also called Domaine de Marie Antoinette because it is most closely associated with Queen Marie Antonette. Having trouble with adapting to life in court, the Queen retreated to Petite Trianon which she received as a gift from King Louis XVI. The estate was then become her own kingdom.

Temple de l'Amour at the Estate of Trianon
Temple de l’Amour at the Estate of Trianon

Practical Information

  • Versailles is easily accessible from Paris by public transport. RER B – Station:  Versailles Château – Rive Gauche.
  • A visit to Versailles requires patience. The crowd will reach its peak at noon resulting hours of waiting. Having a pre-purchase ticket only help you skip the queue at the ticket booth but it does not grant you immediate access to the palace.
  • Monday is closed. Tuesday, Sunday, as well as holidays, are the busiest days.
  • Some chambers, for example, the Royal Chapel, the Private Apartments of the Kings are only accessible when you join a guided tour. The tour takes around 90 minutes and costs 7€.
  • The estate of Trianon is located in the north-west of the palace garden. Just head straight to the Grand Canal, then turn right at Allée de la Reine. There are many signposts en route, thus it is not difficult to find.

Versailles – Biểu tượng của sự xa hoa

Nằm cách trung tâm Paris khoảng 22 km về phía Tây Nam, Versailles chắc hẳn nằm trong lịch trình của nhiều du khách khi đến thăm Paris. Hàng năm, gần sáu triệu du khách trên toàn thế giới đã đến đây để chiêm ngưỡng vẻ đẹp xa hoa và lộng lẫy của cung điện nổi tiếng nhất nước Pháp này.

Cung điện Versailles được bắt đầu xây dựng vào khoảng giữa thế kỉ 17 dưới triều đại của Vua Louis XIV với mục đích thể hiện quyền lực của triều đình phong kiến Pháp lúc bấy giờ. Vào thời kì đó, nước Pháp vô cùng hùng mạnh và Vua Louis XIV dường như sở hữu quyền lực tuyệt đối và vô hạn. Ông ta gọi mình là Le Roi Soleil (Vua Mặt Trời) và cho xây dựng một cung điện xứng đáng với tầm cỡ của ông.

Versailles 2
Château de Versailles

Cung điện Versailles rộng hơn 63.000 m², bao gồm khoảng 2300 phòng được trang trí xa hoa với những bích họa, những cột đá cẩm thạch hay tượng điêu khắc cầu kì. Khoảng 30.000 công nhân và nghệ nhân đã tham gia vào công trình thế kỉ này. Một số phòng nổi bật như: nhà nguyện hoàng gia, phòng ngủ của Vua và nổi tiếng nhất có lẽ là Hall of Mirror (tạm dịch là hành lang kính).

Versailles 4
The Royal Chapel

Cung điện Versailles được bao bọc bởi một khu vuờn rộng gần 800 héc-ta đẹp như một bức tranh, với những thảm hoa, những hàng cây đối xứng và những thảm cỏ trải dài đến tận chân trời. Điểm vào đó là những hồ nước và khoảng 400 tượng điêu khắc nằm rải rác khắp vườn. Khu vườn là tác phẩm của nghệ nhân làm vườn André Le Nôtre và nó được đánh giá là khu vườn baroque lớn nhất và đẹp nhất thế giới.

Versailles 3
Jardin du château de Versailles

Chuyến đi đến Versailles có lẽ sẽ không hoàn chỉnh nếu bạn bỏ qua khu dinh thự Trianon (hay còn gọi là điền trang Marrie-Antonette). Với mục đích nghỉ ngơi thư giãn sau những buổi thiết triều căng thẳng, các vua Louis đã cho xây dựng khu dinh thự này. Khu vực này nằm cách cung điện chính khoảng vài cây số về phía Tây Bắc, bao gồm cung điện Grand Trianon, Petit Trianon và khu điền trang của Hoàng Hậu. Hoàng Hậu Marie Antoinette đặc biệt thích dinh thự này vì bà đã quá chán ngán những nghi lễ hà khắc trong cung. Kể từ khi Vua Louis XVI tặng bà Petit Trianon, bà đã chuyển hẳn về đây và biến nơi đây thành vương quốc cho riêng mình.

Versailles 1
Temple de l’Amour at the Estate of Trianon

Một số thông tin cần biết

  • Đường đến Versailles khá dễ dàng và thuận tiện. Đón tàu RER B từ Paris đến trạm Versailles Château – Rive Gauche.
  • Mua vé trước online sẽ giúp bạn không phải xếp hàng ở quầy mua vé, nhưng bạn vẫn phải xếp hàng để vào cửa. Hàng sẽ dài nhất vào khoảng tầm trưa nên tốt nhất bạn nên đi sớm. Bạn cũng nên hạn chế đi vào thứ 3 hay chủ nhật vì sẽ rất đông. Thứ 2 thì cung điện đóng cửa.
  • Một số phòng đặc biệt như mật thất hay nhà nguyện hoàng gia chỉ có thể vào tham quan khi đi theo tour (7€, 90 phút).


    1. Len Kagami

      Yes, it was completely empty! Although the room is only accessible for guided tours, you can still take a glimpse of it. Just need a little patience 🙂

      1. Dippy-Dotty Girl

        I was wondering that I did not get to see it. I racked my brains and realised I had not booked a guided tour. Everywhere else in that place is bloody crowded except for the Petit Trianon.

    1. Len Kagami

      Absolutely! A typical example is the Sanssouci in Potsdam. It is said that the King of Prussia was inspired by Versailles, so he built a similar palace for himself with gardens, fountains, statues etc.

    1. Len Kagami

      I think you might consider visit the garden at night as well because there are water light shows and beautiful firework displays (on several days) during summer 🙂

  1. Bama

    My stay in Paris was far too short so I didn’t have enough time to visit the Versailles. Thanks for the practicalities, I need to pay attention to the busy days for the palace. By the way, I just came back from your home country. It was my second time to Vietnam and this time I went to Da Nang, Hue, Hoi An and My Son. Loved everything about these places!

    1. Len Kagami

      I am happy to hear that! How long was you there? Did you make a vacation there or doing some research for the Spice Odyssey? I know Hoi An used to be an important port, but I don’t know whether it has anything to do with trading spice or not. I visited Hoi An when I was a kid, so I could not remember any historic details 🙂 Well, can’t wait to see your pictures of those cities!

      1. Bama

        I was in the region for eight days. It was only for vacation though. I went to Saigon six years ago, and since then I had been dreaming to go back to Vietnam to see its Cham ruins and old cities. So this trip has nothing to do with the Spice Odyssey — not directly. There will be five more posts from the Spice Odyssey series, and after that I’ll start writing about places I went to in the past year — Japan, Vietnam, Hong Kong and some places in Indonesia.

  2. Pooja @lostinprettyeurope

    Thanks for the virtual tour of Versailles! 🙂 The one time I was in Paris, I didn’t go there because it was too far and it was too cold (December) hehe. It does look impressive though! What a beautiful day as well.

    1. Len Kagami

      You welcome, Pooja! It was indeed a beautiful day. But it had a side effect: the crowd 😦 We came at around 10:00 but there was already a long queue.

    1. Len Kagami

      Cool! What did they display there, like crowns, jewels, etc? 🙂 Thinking about it, I did not see such items at Versailles, just some sculptures, paintings and a golden carriage.

      1. bedlamanddaisies

        We did stroll around the gardens. The Queen’s hamlet was my biggest interest and we made the trek there. Unfortunately, her house is undergoing renovations, but the rest of the area was lovely!

  3. Megha's World

    Beautiful pictures as always Len. I was about to say it looks very similar to the palaces in Potsdam, Germany then I saw some reader mentioning it. The garden spans acres and they are marvelous.

    The palace in Vienna Schönbrunn Palace has the same sunny tinge to it.

    1. Len Kagami

      Thanks Megha! 🙂 You are right both gardens share similarities. If I remember correctly, the architects who designed Schönbrunn and Sansoucci were inspired by Versailles.

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